The New High-Efficiency Hybrid Neutral-Point-Clamped Converter

Thiago B. Soeiro*, Johann W. Kolar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

87 Citations (Scopus)


This paper introduces a novel three-level voltage-source converter (VSC) as an alternative to known three-level topologies, including the conventional neutral-point-clamped converter (NPCC), many T-type VSCs, and active NPCC. It is shown that, operating in the low converter dc-link voltage range, this new solution not only can achieve higher efficiency than many typical three-level structures but also can overcome their drawback of asymmetrical semiconductor loss distribution for some operating conditions. Therefore, a remarkable increase of the converter output power capability and/or system reliability can be accomplished. The switching states and commutations of the converter, named here as hybrid NPCC (H-NPCC), are analyzed, and a loss-balancing scheme is introduced. Five- and seven-level H-NPCC topologies with loss-balancing features are also presented. Finally, a semiconductor-area-based comparison is used to further evaluate many three-level VSC systems. Interestingly, the total chip area of the proposed H-NPCC is already the lowest for low switching frequencies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number6244878
Pages (from-to)1919-1935
Number of pages17
JournalIEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Neutral-point-clamped converter (NPCC)
  • space vector modulation (SVM)
  • three-level voltage-source converters (VSCs)
  • n/a OA procedure


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