Dynamics and Control of AC Drives

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Course Overview

Apply your fundamental knowledge of power conversion and AC machine theory to learn new skills that will make you more effective on the job.

This course will teach you:

  • The principles of modern AC drives, including PM, induction PM, and reluctance machines
  • The modes of interaction between ac motors and power conversion systems, including dynamic stability issues
  • How to control ac machines, including the principles of field orientation and direct torque control
  • How to model and simulate ac motor/drive systems
  • How to use modern control theory to design controllers that minimize or eliminate dynamic interactions in drive systems
  • The performance of sensorless control methods for ac drives
  • The causes and mitigation of drive-induced machine bearing currents and insulation stress
  • The operation and control of regenerative drives and converters

Who Should Attend?

Engineers involved in the design and development of AC drive systems or a design/development engineer incorporating AC motors and drives into other products and equipment.

Course Outline

Review of Basic Induction Motor Theory

  • Equivalent circuit model
  • Variable frequency operation
  • Non-sinusoidal excitation

Review of Synchronous Machine Theory

  • Physical structure and principle of operation
  • Equivalent circuit model
  • Torque angle and phasor diagram
  • Influence of saliency
  • Variable frequency operation
  • Permanent magnet machines

Converters for AC Drives

  • Functional requirements of converters
  • Types of converters in use today
  • Operating features
  • Performance capabilities

Adjustable Speed Drive Types

  • Power semiconductor types
  • Power converter classifications
  • Induction machine drive configurations—VSI, CSI, Static Scheribus
  • Synchronous machine drive configurations—VSI, CSI, Current Regulating

Induction Motor Model

  • Coupled circuit model of AC machines
  • d-q reference frame representation
  • Vector representation of machines
  • Effects of saliency

Vector Analysis of Induction Machines

  • Steady state equivalent circuits
  • Electrical transients at constant speed
  • Transient equivalent circuits

Current Regulation in Power Converters

  • Proportional and “P-I” Control Basics
  • Command Feedforward (CFF)
  • Disturbance Input Decoupling (DID)
  • Decoupling State Feedback (DSFbk)
  • Extension to VSI and AC Motor Current Control

Simulation of AC Machines and Drives

  • Flux linkage machine models
  • Survey of simulation programs
  • Simulation using MATLAB/SIMULINK
  • Converter modeling
  • Demonstration of converter-machine simulation

Complex Modeling for Control Design and Analysis

  • Vector and scalar models of machines
  • Synchronous vs. stationary frame vector models
  • Asymmetric root locations and frequency response functions
  • Controller design using vector models

Field Orientation (FO)–Induction Machines

  • Steady state induction machine FO
  • Dynamics of induction machine FO
  • Indirect controllers for induction machine FO
  • Direct controllers for induction machine FO

Field Weakening

  • Flux level selection
  • Inverter imposed voltage and current limits
  • Torque capability in field weakening
  • Control system implementation

Flux Observers and Direct Field Orientation (DFO)

  • Field orientation from a controls perspective
  • Industry standard indirect Field Orientation
  • Existing methods for DFO
  • Observer-based flux estimation
  • Observer-based DFO

Field Orientation Control of Synchronous Machines

  • Requirements for high-performance torque control
  • Self-synchronous control
  • Maximum torque-per-amp operation
  • Dynamic response characteristics
  • “Brushless” DC machines

Permanent Magnet Synchronous Machine Drives

  • Permanent magnet machine discussion
  • Vector control of permanent magnet synchronous machines
  • Flux weakening operation

Direct Torque Control

  • Stator flux and electromagnetic torque control
  • Implementation alternatives

Sensorless Control

  • Exciting and tracking saliencies
  • Observers and performance metrics
  • Implementation

Simulation of Field-Oriented Drives

  • Motor model
  • PWM/inverter model
  • Speed and current regulators
  • Slip gain calculation

Practical Aspects of Drive Control

  • Current feedback
  • Speed feedback
  • PWM

Inverter Effects–Bearing Currents

  • Short voltage rise times
  • Voltage reflection
  • Filters
  • Influence of motors and cables

Operation and Control of Regenerative Drives and Converters

  • Motivation for regeneration
  • Regenerative converters as front-ends of regenerative drives
  • Principle of operation
  • Phase-lock loop systems for synchronization with single and three-phase systems
  • DC Bus voltage control

Parameter Estimation and Adaptation

  • Basic estimation principles
  • Formulation of accurate methodology
  • Forming induction machine models
  • Selecting excitation models

Fault Protection for AC Drives

  • Asymmetrical systems
  • Fault model development
  • Fault signature identification


"Very thorough and complete coverage of the presented topics."
—Jason Johnson, Northrop-Grumman Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia

"AWESOME! Nice to get the latest info in a concise and well-explained format. Lots of good info."
—John Neely, Eaton Aerospace, Grand Rapids, Michigan

"Very good presentation; quite insightful."
—DeWayne Speer, Manager of Electrical Engineering, Helmerich & Payne IDC, Tulsa, Oklahoma

"Best course I've ever had over a nearly 30-year career. I wish I'd had these professors when I was in college. They are all exceptional."
—Allen Davidson, Sr. Project Engineer, Northrop-Grumman Shipbuilding, Newport News, Virginia


Vladimir Blasko

Vladimir Blasko works in the United Technologies Research Center directing the power electronics research unit. His primary areas of interest and expertise are AC drives, intelligent power management, power electronics, applied modern control theory, and technology and he has long industrial experience in research and development in power electronics and electrical drives. Vladimir previously worked at Otis Elevators and Rockwell Automation-Allen Bradley Company and holds a PhD in electrical engineering.

Thomas Jahns

Thomas M. Jahns is a Professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Previously with GE Corporate R&D and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Jahns has research interests in electric machines, drive system analysis and control, and power electronic modules.

Russel Kerkman

Dr. Kerkman is a Distinguished Engineering Fellow with Rockwell Automation. His career spans 32 years in power electronics and adjustable speed drives and his current interests include adaptive control applied to field-oriented induction machines, design of AC motors for adjustable speed applications, and EMI from PWM inverters. Dr. Kerkman received his BSEE, MSEE, and PhD degrees in electrical engineering from Purdue University.

Bulent Sarlioglu

Bulent Sarlioglu is a Jean van Bladel Associate Professor at University of Wisconsin–Madison, and Associate Director, Wisconsin Electric Machines and Power Electronics Consortium (WEMPEC). Dr. Sarlioglu spent more than ten years at Honeywell International Inc.’s aerospace division, most recently as a staff system engineer, earning Honeywell’s technical achievement award in 2003 and an outstanding engineer award in 2011.  Dr. Sarlioglu contributed to multiple programs where high-speed electric machines and drives are used mainly for aerospace and ground vehicle applications. Dr. Sarlioglu is the inventor or co-inventor of 20 US patents and many other international patents. He published more than 200 journal and conference papers with his students. His research areas are motors and drives including high-speed electric machines, novel electric machines, and application of wide bandgap devices to power electronics to increase efficiency and power density. He received the NSF CAREER Award in 2016 and the 4th Grand Nagamori Award from Nagamori Foundation, Japan in 2019. Dr. Sarlioglu became IEEE IAS Distinguished Lecturer in 2018.  He was the technical program co-chair for ECCE 2019 and was the general chair for ITEC 2018.  He is serving as a special session co-chair for ECCE 2020.



Michael Harke

Michael received his BS, MS and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 1997, 1999 and 2006, respectively. His research focused on control theory, electric machines and power electronics. During his studies, he worked with numerous companies including Whirlpool, Ford Motor Company, Schneider Electric, International Rectifier and Hamilton Sundstrand.

In 2006, Michael joined Hamilton Sundstrand in the Applied Research Department where he worked on motor control and power electronics for aerospace applications including motor drives and actuators. Between 2010 and 2013 he was with Danfoss Power Electronics where he focused on industrial motor control. He has since returned to Hamilton Sundstrand, now known as UTC Aerospace Systems. He is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Rome La Sapienza, teaching coursework on dynamic analysis and control of ac machines.

Michael is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers where he serves as the Past Chair of the Industrial Drives Committee and society representative to the Sensors Council AdCom for the Industry Applications Society. He was the Technical Program co-Chair for the IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Exposition 2013. He has published 25 papers in conferences and journals and has 8 patents.

Hao Huang

Dr. Hao Huang is the Retired Technology Chief of General Electric Aviation’s Electrical Power Division. Prior to retirement in 2020, he was responsible for providing technical direction, innovation strategies, and multi-generation product roadmaps for the GE aircraft electrical power division. He has been constantly leading and contributing innovations and inventions of aircraft electrical power technologies. Dr. Huang is a NAE Member, IEEE fellow, and SAE fellow. He received his Ph.D. Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, Colorado, USA in 1987. He has 33 years of experience in Aircraft Electrical Power Systems, Power Generations, Engine Starting, Power Electronics and Controls, and Electric Vehicle Drives. He has 80 US patents including several pending, and has published a number of papers. Dr. Hao Huang is the recipient of 2019 IEEE Transportation Technologies Award.

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Program Director

Bulent Sarlioglu

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