This thesis describes the creation of a small-scale Hybrid Power System (HPS) that maximizes energy from a wind turbine and photovoltaic array. Small-scale HPS are becoming an increasingly viable energy solution as fossil fuel prices rise and more electricity is needed in remote areas. Modern HPS typically employ wind speed sensors and three power stages to extract maximum power. Modern systems also use passive rectifiers to convert AC from the wind turbine to DC that is usable by power electronics. This passive system inefficiently wastes power and introduces damaging harmonic noise to the wind turbine. The HPS described in this thesis does not require external wind speed sensors, and has independent wind and solar Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT). It converts AC from the wind turbine to DC with a Vienna rectifier that can be controlled to improve efficiency, allow MPPT, and allow Power Factor Correction (PFC). PFC all but eliminates the harmonic noise that can damage the wind turbine. A prototype HPS was built and evaluated that combines the two renewable sources in such a way that only two power stages are necessary, the Vienna rectifier and a step-down converter. This thesis describes the prototype and reports the results obtained.
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Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Dissertations, Academic -- Engineering and Computer Science;Engineering and Computer Science -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Kerley, Ross, "Small-scale hybrid alternative energy maximizer for wind turbines and photovoltaic panels" (2011). HIM 1990-2015. 1227.