Date of Award

December 2012

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Adel Nasiri

Committee Members

George Hanson, David Yu, Anoop Dhingra, Ethan Munson, Adel Nasiri


Wind energy has gained in popularity in recent years due to cost, security and environmental concerns associated with conventional energy sources like fossil fuels. However, the utilization of wind energy in power systems creates many technical and non-technical challenges that need to be addressed for successful integrations. The main technical issues related to wind energy are its uncertainty and variability and their impacts on stability, reliability and quality of the electric power. In systems with high wind energy penetrations, unlike conventional generations, sudden changes in active and/or reactive power demand cannot be supported by wind energy. This lack of demand support may create unwanted voltage and frequency variations in the grid. On the hand, the existing AC distributed wind farms have several drawbacks including complexity, higher cost, and lower efficiency.

In this dissertation, a medium voltage direct current (MVDC) distribution system for wind farms is investigated. The proposed system offers higher reliability, lower cost, higher efficiency and more importantly grid support. It also allows for easier integration of energy storage systems at DC level. Design, control, implementation, and testing of a three-level medium voltage inverter are presented. The inverter can provide active and reactive power support to the grid in case of frequency and voltage droops. Simulation and experimental results are presented to verify the viability of the proposed system and control techniques.