A Quadruple Active Bridge Converter for the Storage Integration on the More Electric Aircraft

The More Electric Aircraft concepts aims at increasing the penetration of electric systems on aircrafts. In this framework, the electrical power distribution system (EPDS) is of high importance. In order to improve the utilization of the generators and face the peak power demand without disconnecting the loads, different technologies of storage are employed. This paper proposes the use of a quadruple active bridge converter, already employed in other fields, to interface a fuel cell, a battery, and a supercapacitor bank to the dc bus of the EPDS. This objective can be achieved by employing multiple dc/dc converters, which allow an individual control of the energy sources and a good efficiency. Obtaining the same power control and efficiency with a multiport power converter constitutes a challenge that is worth taking to reduce cost, volume, and weight and increase the system reliability. A novel control based on proportional integral (PI) controllers in conjunction with a decoupling system and current feedforward allow shaping the power request to each port. This, however, leads to an asymmetrical loading of each port, which could decrease the efficiency. A laboratory prototype is used to confirm that this asymmetrical kind of operation, where each port processes a different amount of power, does not imply a marked reduction of efficiency.


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