Efficiency of Capacitively Loaded Converters

Thomas Andersen, Lina Huang, Michael A. E. Andersen, Ole Cornelius Thomsen

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This paper explores the characteristic of capacitance versus voltage for dielectric electro active polymer (DEAP) actuator, 2kV polypropylene film capacitor as well as 3kV X7R multi layer ceramic capacitor (MLCC) at the beginning. An energy efficiency for capacitively loaded converters is introduced as a definition of efficiency. The calculated and measured efficiency curves for charging DEAP actuator, polypropylene film capacitor and X7R MLCC are provided and
compared. The attention has to be paid for the voltage dependent capacitive load, like X7R MLCC, when evaluating the charging efficiency of converter. Based on the capacitancevoltage curve, the correct capacitance should be chosen when calculating the stored energy; otherwise misleading optimistic
efficiency can always be obtained. Actually, when DEAP actuator is not available at the early developing stage, the voltage independent polypropylene film capacitor can be the equivalent capacitive load. Because of the voltage dependent characteristic, X7R MLCC cannot be used to replace the DEAP actuator. However, this type of capacitor can be used to substitute the capacitive actuator with voltage dependent property at the development phase.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 38th Annual Conference on IEEE Industrial Electronics Society
Publication date2012
ISBN (Print)978-1-4673-2420-5
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Event38th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society - École de technologie supérieure, Montreal, Canada
Duration: 25 Jun 201228 Jun 2012


Conference38th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society
LocationÉcole de technologie supérieure
Internet address


  • DEAP actuator
  • Capacitance voltage characteristic
  • Voltage independent capacitor
  • Voltage dependent capacitor
  • Energy efficiency


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