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Project with Toyota Motor Corporation: “An Inverter Loss Simulation for New Material Devices”

The power electronic inverter in a hybrid electric vehicle, such as the Toyota Prius, is a key component in the hybrid system, supplying power from the batteries to the motor to assist the engine during acceleration. This results in a smaller engine and reduced fuel consumption. However, inverters used in this application are currently limited by the power semiconductor devices used to control the power flow (IGBTs, PIN diodes), in particular the cooling requirements.

This project aims to address this issue, using a combination of advanced modelling techniques to evaluate device performance under real operating conditions. These include advanced compact device models, fast inverter simulation methods, and accurate multi-dimensional heatsink models to estimate the device temperature rise. This also allows new material technologies (e.g. silicon carbide) and packaging topologies to be assessed for automotive powertrain electronics applications.


 powertrain.jpeg  bonnet.jpeg
Toyota Prius Hybrid Car
Schemactiv Over of the Prius

The inverters are in the aluminium
case on the right

The power electronics inside the
inverter case