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Erickson, Robert W Professor

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Research Areas research areas

Research

research overview

  • Dr. Erickson's research focuses on new approaches to control and convert electrical power with ultra-high efficiency, with application to renewable energy systems and other applications of electrical power. This research incorporates advances in magnetics technology and modeling with advances in power conversion circuitry to push the limits of achievable system efficiency. He has recently applied these results to demonstrate new building-integrated photovoltaic power systems that maximize energy harvest with complex building geometries, and also to demonstrate new power electronics architectures that substantially reduce the loss in electric vehicle drivetrains.

keywords

  • power electronics and control, power magnetics, electric vehicle power electronics, photovoltaic power systems, medical applications of power electronics

Publications

selected publications

Teaching

courses taught

  • ECEA 5700 - Power Electronics: Introduction to Power Electronics
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2019 / Spring 2020 / Summer 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    Introduces the basic concepts of switched-mode converter circuits for controlling and converting electrical power with high efficiency. Principles of converter circuit analysis are introduced and developed for finding steady-state voltages, current, and efficiency of power converters. Assignments include a dc-dc converter simulation, inverting dc-dc converter analysis, and modeling of an electric vehicle system and a USB power regulator.
  • ECEA 5701 - Power Electronics: Converter Circuits
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2020 / Summer 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    Introduces more advanced switched-mode converter concepts. Realization of power semiconductors in inverters or in converters having bidirectional power flow is explained. Power diodes, power MOSFETs, and IGBTs are explained, including their switching time origins. Equivalent circuit models are refined to include the effects of switching loss. Several well-known converter circuit topologies are explored, including those with transformer isolation.
  • ECEA 5702 - Power Electronics: Converter Control
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2020 / Summer 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    This course teaches feedback system design to control a switching converter. Equivalent circuit models derived in previous courses are extended to model small-signal ac variations. These models are then solved for important converter transfer functions and regulator system. Finally, the feedback loop is modeled and designed to meet requirements such as output regulation, bandwidth and transient response, and disturbance rejection.
  • ECEA 5703 - Power Electronics: Magnetics Design
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    Covers magnetic component analysis and design, including inductors and transformers in power electronic converters. First introduced are inductor and transformer physical principles, including concepts of inductance, core material saturation, inductors airgap and energy storage, reluctance and magnetic circuit modeling, transformer-equivalent circuits, magnetizing and leakage inductance. Multi-winding transformer model details are covered, plus optimizing inductors in switched-mode power converters.
  • ECEA 5715 - Power Electronics Capstone Project
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    A design project that applies the material of courses ECEA 5700, 5701, 5702, 5703, and 5705 to design and verify a bidirectional dc-dc converter and its controller, to interface a lithium-polymer battery to a USB-C device. Three milestones demonstrate: design and steady-state operation of converter power stage, averaged modeling and design of converter controller, and closed-loop transient response and regulation.
  • ECEN 2260 - Circuits as Systems
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Continues basic circuit analysis of ECEN 2250: Laplace transform techniques, transfer functions, frequency response, Bode diagrams, resonant circuits, Fourier series expansions, and convolution. Recommended corequisite: ECEN 2270.
  • ECEN 4517 - Power Electronics and Photovoltaic Power Systems Laboratory
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Spring 2020 / Spring 2021
    Focuses on analysis, modeling, design and testing of electrical energy processing systems in a practical laboratory setting. Studies power electronics converters for efficient utilization of available energy sources, including solar panels and utility. Experimental projects involve design, fabrication and testing of a solar power system. Same as ECEN 5517.
  • ECEN 4797 - Introduction to Power Electronics
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2018 / Fall 2020
    An introduction to switched-mode converters. Includes steady-state converter modeling and analysis, switch realization, discontinuous conduction mode and transformer-isolated converters. Ac modeling of converters using averaged methods, small-signal transfer functions, feedback loop design and transformer design. Same as ECEN 5797.
  • ECEN 5009 - Special Topics
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2020
    Examines a special topic in Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering. May be repeated up to 9 total credit hours.
  • ECEN 5517 - Power Electronics and Photovoltaic Power Systems Laboratory
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Spring 2020 / Spring 2021
    Focuses on analysis, modeling, design and testing of electrical energy processing systems in a practical laboratory setting. Studies power electronics converters for efficient utilization of available energy sources, including solar panels and utility. Experimental projects involve design, fabrication and testing of a solar power system. Same as ECEN 4517
  • ECEN 5797 - Introduction to Power Electronics
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2018 / Fall 2020
    An introduction to switched-mode converters. Includes steady-state converter modeling and analysis, switch realization, discontinuous conduction mode and transformer-isolated converters. Ac modeling of converters using averaged methods, small-signal transfer functions, feedback loop design and transformer design. Same as ECEN 4797.
  • ECEN 6950 - Master's Thesis
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2019 / Spring 2020
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