Year of erogation: 
Unit Coordinator: 
Disciplinary Sector: 
First semester
Year of study: 
Language of instruction: 

Italian (English if requested by foreign students in the frame of international mobility programs)

Learning outcomes of the course unit

1. Knowledge and understanding

- The student will address the design problems in the field of power electronics, both from the point of view of semiconductor power devices and power systems. To this end also complements about driver circuits for power transistors and dimensioning of passive components will be provided.

- The student will also obtain knowledge in thermo-mechanical and electromagnetic compatibility aspects, which are of primary importance today.

2. Applying knowledge and understanding

- The student will obtain both hardware and software laboratory skills, engaging in the design of power converters for renewable sources.

3. Soft skill

- The student, through the teamwork, will acquire skill on critical discussion, cooperation aimed at project, and project planning


Skills in circuits for the static energy conversion.

Course contents summary

- The first section of the course (about 15 hours) deals with the thermal aspects and reliability issues in power electronic devices and modules. This part is also preliminary for the laboratory activity (about 25 hours), which will be introduced soon and will continue, in parallel with lectures, until the end of the course. This activity will focus on the electro-thermo-magnetic and/or thermo-mechanical simulation of power devices and circuits and on the design of conversion systems from renewable energy sources.

- After that snubbers and drivers for active power electronic devices will be presented (about 10 hours)

- The following section (about 10 hours) is devoted to the selection and sizing of passive power components.

- The final section of the course (about 10 hours) presents the main design aspects of electromagnetic compatibility at the system level.

Course contents

- Thermal aspects in power electron devices and modules design (about 5 hours).
- Degradation mechanisms and reliability of power electron devices and modules (about 5 hours).
- Thermo-electro-mechanical simulation of power devices and modules (about 5 hours):
- Finite elements model (FEM) simulation;
- FE thermal and thermo-mechanical models.

- Non-idealities and design criteria for passive components (about 10 hours):
- capacitors;
- magnetic cores;
- inductors;
- transformers.
- Electromagnetic compatibility (about 10 hours):
- General description of EMC problems;
- Notices about EMC regulations;
- Models for radiated emissions and radiated and conducted susceptivity;
- Electrostatic discharge (ESD);
- Shielding.
- Drivers (5 hours):
- Drivers for SCR and GTO;
- Drivers for BJT;
- Drivers for MOSFET and IGBT.
- Snubbers (5 hours):
- Diode snubber;
- Snubber for BJT;
- Snubber for GTO;
- Snubber for SCR.
- Laboratory activity on electro-thermo-magnetic and/or thermo-mechanical simulation of power devices and circuits and on the design of conversion systems from renewable energy sources (about 25 hours).

Recommended readings

- For the active and passive devices section:
C. R. Paul, Electromagnetic Compatibility, Wiley, 1992.

- For the EMC section:
N. Mohan, T. M. Undeland, W. P. Robbins, Power Electronics: Converters, Applications, and Design, 3rd Ed., John Wiley, 2003.

Teaching methods

- Online lectures with projection of slides (PDF file provided to students in advance). The lectures will be recordered a supplied online following the schedule.

- CAD laboratory on:

1) Thermal and electromagnetic analysis of power devices and circuits

2) Design of power conversion systems from renewable energies
The activity in laboratory will include an introduction to the use of the software, guided by the teacher with the help of assistants, and a second part in which a project to carry out will be assigned to work groups of 2 students.

The laboratory activity will be held in presence when possible, or online, integrated by students reception.

Assessment methods and criteria

There will be no tests during the course.
The examination will be composed by an oral session (personal), in which the student must demonstrate that he have understood and learned the content of the lectures given in the classroom, and a written (team) report on the laboratory activity.
The score of the oral exam will available immediately after the oral examination.
The laboratory activity, after some introductory lessons, will consist in carrying out a project assigned to groups of 2-3 students.
The report on the laboratory activity can be delivered and discussed on a different date (after agreement with the teacher) from that of the oral examination.
The score on the laboratory activity will available immediately after the discussion of the report.
The score of the oral examination and the score obtained by the report on the laboratory activity will contribute with the same weight to the formation of the final score.

Other informations

The teaching materials and support to lectures is available on the Elly website