Active methods to improve reliability in power electronics

Reliability of power electronics is a critical issue, as most of the electrical energy is processed by power electronics. Various stressors impact the safe operation of the systems, including harsh environments, temperature variations, humidity, vibration and radiation. Physics of failure analysis uses models that describe how failure mechanisms evolve over time and induce failures. Active methods help to increase the reliability during operation. These methods rely on intelligent control that help to avoid operation conditions that affect stress that lead to failures. This paper provides an overview on recent active methods to increase the reliability of power electronics and categorizes them according to their impact on reliability, invasiveness to system operation and open research opportunities. An industry perspective taken from a survey in the end of 2016 is included to rate how promising the different methods are considered.


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