Optimized Control Strategy for a Medium-Voltage DVR—Theoretical Investigations and Experimental Results


Most power quality problems in distribution systems are related to voltage sags. Therefore, different solutions have been examined to compensate these sags to avoid production losses at sensitive loads. Dynamic Voltage Restorers (DVRs) have been proposed to provide higher power quality. Currently, a system wide integration of DVRs is hampered because of their high cost, in particular, due to the expensive DC-link energy storage devices.The cost of these DC-link capacitors remains high because the DVR requires a minimum DC-link voltage to be able to operate and to compensate a sag. As a result, only a small fraction of the energy stored in the DC-link capacitor is used, which makes it impractical for DVRs to compensate relatively long voltage sags.

Present control strategies are only able to minimize the distortions at the load or to allow a better utilization of the storage system by minimizing the needed voltage amplitude. To avoid this drawback, an optimized control strategy is presented in this paper, which is able to reduce the needed injection voltage of the DVR and concurrently to mitigate the transient distortions at the load side.In the following paper, a brief introduction of the basic DVR principle will be given.  Next, three standard control strategies will be compared and an optimized control strategy is developed in this paper. Finally, experimental results using a medium-voltage 10-kV DVR setup will be shown to verify and prove the functionality of the presented control strategy in both symmetrical and asymmetrical voltage sag conditions.


  1. Asymmetrical voltage sag
  2. Dynamic voltage restorer (DVR)
  3. In-phase compensation
  4. Optimized compensation
  5. Pre-sag compensation



 Fig. 1. Basic concept of a DVR.


 Fig. 2. Measured voltages during a long, balanced sag.

Fig. 3. Measured voltages during a long, unbalanced sag.


 Voltage sags are a major problem in power systems due to the increased integration of sensitive loads. DVR systems are able to compensate these short voltage sags. The control and the design  of these systems are critical. Present control strategies are able either to minimize load distortions or the needed voltage amplitude. Both requirements are of utmost importance, especially the needed voltage amplitude for compensating a voltage sag leads to a strict limitation of the range of operation without oversizing the converter significantly.

In this paper, the basic concept of an optimized solution is presented. Based on a combination of the pre-sag and in-phase compensation methods, the proposed optimized DVR control strategy can react to a short voltage sag avoiding disturbances to the protected load. While for a long voltage sag, the proposed method is still able to generate the appropriate voltage without over modulation (or oversized DC-link capacitor) and with minimized load voltage transient distortions. Furthermore, medium voltage level experimental results are presented to verify the feasibility of this control strategy in both balanced and unbalanced voltage sag situations. Although, the effect of the control strategy has only been shown for long but shallow sags, similar results occur for deep sags or large phase jumps.

In this study, it was found that the required voltage amplitude of the DVR with the proposed optimized control strategy was reduced by 25%, compared to the pre-sag controller. In other words, the maximum compensation time is increased by approximately the same amount. Taking into consideration that a phase jump of 12 is not extremely high and that the advantages increases with larger phase jumps, an even higher gain is  possible in practical systems. Summarizing all advantages up, it can be stated that the compensation time of existing DVR systems under pre-sag control can be significantly improved when applying the proposed optimized strategy. In newly designed DVRs, the DC-link capacitance can be decreased without reducing the range of operation.


[1] M. Bollen, Understanding Power Quality Problems, Voltage Sags and Interruptions. New York: IEEE press, 1999.

[2] A. Kara, D. Amhof, P. Dähler, and H. Grüning, “Power supply quality improvement with a dynamic voltage restorer (DVR),” in Proc. Appl.Power Electron. Conf., 1998, no. 2, pp. 986–993.

[3] P. Dähler, M. Eichler, O. Gaupp, and G. Linhofer, “Power quality devices improve manufacturing process stability,” ABB Rev., vol. 1, pp.  62–68, 2001.

[4] W. E. Brumsickle, R. S. Schneider, G.A. Luckjiff, D. M. Divan, and M. F. McGranaghan, “Dynamic sag correctors: Cost effective industrial power line conditioning,” IEEE Trans. Ind. Appl., vol. 37, no. 1, pp. 212–217, Jan.–Feb. 2001.

[5] C. Meyer and R. De Doncker, “Solid-state circuit breaker based on active thyristor topologies,” IEEE Trans. Power Electron., vol. 21, no.2, pp. 450–458, Nov. 2006.

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