A Multilevel Inverter Structure based on Combination of Switched-Capacitors and DC Sources


This paper presents a switched-capacitor multilevel inverter (SCMLI) combined with multiple asymmetric DC sources. The main advantage of proposed inverter with similar cascaded MLIs is reducing the number of isolated DC sources and replacing them with capacitors. A self-balanced asymmetrical charging pattern is introduced in order to boost the voltage and create more voltage levels. Number of circuit components such as active switches, diodes, capacitors, drivers and DC sources reduces in proposed structure. This multi-stage hybrid MLI increases the total voltage of used DC sources by multiple charging of the capacitors stage by stage. A bipolar output voltage can be inherently achieved in this structure without using single phase H-bridge inverter which was used in traditional SCMLIs to generate negative voltage levels. This eliminates requirements of high voltage rating elements to achieve negative voltage levels. A 55-level step-up output voltage (27 positive levels, a zero level and 27 negative levels) are achieved by a 3-stage system which uses only 3 asymmetrical DC sources (with amplitude of 1Vin, 2Vin and 3Vin) and 7 capacitors (self-balanced as multiples of 1Vin). MATLAB/SIMULINK simulation results and experimental tests are given to validate the performance of proposed circuit.


  1. Multi-level inverter
  2. Switched-capacitor
  3. Bipolar converter
  4. Asymmetrical
  5. Self-balancing



Fig (1) Three stage structure of the proposed inverter



 Fig (2) Waveform of the output voltage in (a) 50Hz and pure resistive load (b the inset graphs of voltage and current

Fig (3) waveform of the output voltage in 50Hz with resistive-inductive load

Fig (4) Capacitor’s voltage in 50Hz (a) middle stage (b) last stage


In this paper, a multilevel inverter based on combination of multiple DC sources and switched-capacitors is presented. Unlike traditional converters which used H-bridge cell to produce negative voltage that the switches should withstand maximum output AC voltage, the suggested structure has the ability of generating bipolar voltage (positive, zero and negative), inherently. Operating principle of the proposed SCMLI in charging and discharging is carried out. Also, evaluation of reliability has been done and because of high number of redundancy, there has been many alternative switching states which help the proposed structure operate correctly even in fault conditions. For confirming the superiority than others, a comprehensive comparison in case of number of devices and efficiency is carried out and shows that the proposed topology has better performance than others. For validating the performance, simulation and experimental results are brought under introduced offline PWM control method.


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