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Efficiency Enhancement of PWM Controlled Water Electrolysis Cells

Authors: S.K. Mazloomi, Nasri b. Sulaiman


By analyzing the sources of energy and power loss in PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) controlled drivers of water electrolysis cells, it is possible to reduce the power dissipation and enhance the efficiency of such hydrogen production units. A PWM controlled power driver is based on a semiconductor switching element where its power dissipation might be a remarkable fraction of the total power demand of an electrolysis system. Power dissipation in a semiconductor switching element is related to many different parameters which could be fitted into two main categories: switching losses and conduction losses. Conduction losses are directly related to the built, structure and capabilities of a switching device itself and indeed the conditions in which the element is handling the switching application such as voltage, current, temperature and of course the fabrication technology. On the other hand, switching losses have some other influencing variables other than the mentioned such as control system, switching method and power electronics circuitry of the PWM power driver. By analyzings the characteristics of recently developed power switching transistors from different families of Bipolar Junction Transistors (BJT), Metal Oxide Semiconductor Field Effect Transistors (MOSFET) and Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBT), some recommendations are made in this paper which are able to lead to achieve higher hydrogen production efficiency by utilizing PWM controlled water electrolysis cells.

Keywords: PWM, Power switch, Semiconductor switch, Waterelectrolysis

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

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