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Grid-Integrated Electric Drive Analysis for The Ohio State University

NREL performed thermal management analysis and simulations on a high-performance, high-speed drive—developed by The Ohio State University (OSU)—that is capable of integrating with electric grids.

Photo of a man operating laboratory equipment, specifically a boiling vessel with cooling loops.

The proposed work can be considered as a pilot study for the future generation of energy efficient, high power density, high-speed integrated medium/high-voltage drive systems.  If successful, the proposed project will significantly advance transformer-less drive technologies for a range of industries and motor applications.

For the thermal management analysis and simulations, NREL:

  • Developed 3-D, finite element analysis (FEA) thermal models for commercially available power modules to incorporate into the system design and to identify heat sink requirements
  • Performed analysis of commercially available air-cooled heat sinks
  • Prepared preliminary system thermal model and shared system-level impacts of heat sink, fan, and system layout design options
  • Developed computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models for analysis of alternative air-cooled, heat-sink designs and fans.

The research supported OSU's project milestone for the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO). Learn more about AMO.

Impact

If successful, OSU's electric drive will significantly advance transformer-less drive technologies for a range of industries and motor applications.

Capabilities

Learn more about NREL's power electronics and electric machines research capabilities.