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Power Electronics for Renewable Energy Conversion

Faculty: Simone Buso, Paolo MattavelliLeopoldo Rossetto, Giorgio Spiazzi, Paolo Tenti


Renewable energy sources require adequate control and power processing to be safely connected to utility grid or even to be directly connected to local loads, e.g. when operating in islanding conditions. This motivates substantial research in power converters devoted to optimize the exploitation of the sources and to properly regulate the power delivery to loads and/or the utility grid. The Power Electronics Group at DEI is actively participating to this worldwide research effort.

Research goals

The purpose of the research program on renewable energy sources is to study devices, circuits and related control techniques for the exploitation of renewable energy sources, with particular emphasis on the photovoltaic and hydrogen proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technologies. The energy flowing from these sources needs to be properly converted before it is delivered to the typical users, the most important being the utility grid itself. The conversion processes can be effectively performed by switching power converters, whose ideal, target characteristics are: high conversion efficiency, minimal generation of electromagnetic noise, high reliability and maximum power density (minimum volume occupation for a given amount of processed power). The study of such switching converters involves both the development of novel topologies and the identification of suitable control strategies, allowing the achievement of the expected performance. 

Research areas

The areas covered by the research program are:

  • high step-up ratio dc-dc converters for fuel cells and ac power modules
  • dc-ac converter topologies and control strategies for power injection into the utility grid
  • maximum power point tracking algorithms for photovoltaic generators
  • anti-islannding algorthms
  • battery charging algorithms
  • dynamic modelling of photvoltaic generators and PEM fuel cells


  • G. Spiazzi, F. Sichirollo, F. A. Serrao Goncalves, "Efficiency Analysis of an Isolated High Voltage Gain Converter  Operating in Resonant and Non-Resonant Mode," IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Exposition (ECCE), North Carolina, 2012, pp. 3875-3881.
  • G. Spiazzi, S. Buso, F. Sichirollo, L. Corradini, "Small-Signal Modeling of the Interleaved Boost with Voltage Multiplier," IEEE Energy Conversion Congress and Exposition (ECCE), North Carolina, 2012, pp. 431-437.
  • F. S. Garcia, J. A. Pomilio, G. Spiazzi, "Comparison of Non-Insulated, High-Gain, High-Power, Step-Up DC-DC Converters," IEEE Applied Power Electronics Conf. (APEC), 2012. pp. 1343 - 1347.
  • F. S. Garcia, J. A. Pomilio, G. Spiazzi, "Modeling and Control Design of the Interleaved Double Dual Boost Converter," Transaction on Industrial Electronics, vol. PP, Issue 99, ISSN :  0278-0046, doi: 10.1109/TIE.2012.2203770.
  • G. Spiazzi, P. Mattavelli, A. Costabeber, "High Step-Up Ratio Flyback Converter With Active Clamp and Voltage Multiplier," IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics, vol. 26, p. 3205-3214, ISSN: 0885-8993, doi: 10.1109/TPEL.2011.2134871.
  • G. Spiazzi, P. Mattavelli, J. R. Gazoli, R. Magalhaes, G. Frattini, “Improved Integrated Boost-Flyback High Step-Up Converter,” IEEE International Conference on Industrial Technology (ICIT), Vina del Mar, Chile, 2010, pp. 1149-1154.
  • V.V.R. Scarpa, S. Buso, G. Spiazzi, “Low-Complexity MPPT Technique Exploiting the PV Module MPP Locus Characterization”, IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, Vol. 56, No. 5, May 2009, pp. 1531-1538.
  • G. Spiazzi, S. Buso, P. Mattavelli, “Analysis of MPPT algorithms for photovoltaic panels based on ripple correlation techniques in presence of parasitic components”, 10th Brazilian Power Electronics Conference, Bonito (MS), Brazil, September 27-October 1, 2009, pp. 88-95.