DC Circuit Breaker Evolution, Design, and Analysis

Moradian, Mehdi
Lie, Tek Tjing
Gunawardane, Kosala
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While traditional AC mechanical circuit breakers can protect AC circuits, many other DC power distribution technologies, such as DC microgrids (MGs), yield superior disruption performance, e.g., faster and more reliable switching speeds. However, novel DC circuit breaker (DCCB) designs are challenging due to the need to quickly break high currents within milliseconds, caused by the high fault current rise in DC grids compared to AC grids. In DC grids, the circuit breaker must not provide any current crossing and must absorb surges, since the arc is not naturally extinguished by the system. Additionally, the DC breaker must mitigate the magnetic energy stored in the system inductance and withstand residual overvoltages after current interruption. These challenges require a fundamentally different topology for DCCBs, which are typically made using solid-state semiconductor technology, metal oxide varistors (MOVs), and ultra-fast switches. This study aims to provide a comprehensive review of the development, design, and performance of DCCBs and an analysis of internal topology, the energy absorption path, and subcircuits in solid-state (SS)-based DCCBs. The research explores various novel designs that introduce different structures for an energy dissipation solution. The classification of these designs is based on the fundamental principles of surge mitigation and a detailed analysis of the techniques employed in DCCBs. In addition, our framework offers an advantageous reference point for the future evolution of SS circuit breakers in numerous developing power delivery systems.

40 Engineering , 4008 Electrical Engineering , 4009 Electronics, Sensors and Digital Hardware , 7 Affordable and Clean Energy , 02 Physical Sciences , 09 Engineering , 33 Built environment and design , 40 Engineering , 51 Physical sciences
Energies, ISSN: 1996-1073 (Print); 1996-1073 (Online), MDPI AG, 16(17), 6130-6130. doi: 10.3390/en16176130
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