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Tuesday December 12th 2017
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Prius Inverter Evaluation

Have been evaluating the possible use of a Prius Inverter driven with a Microchip controller over the past several months.  

Removed the link capacitor to see the driver circuit and replaced it with a  smaller cap (blue) and hooked 36 volts across it.  Using the setup below,  hooked 12 volts between connector labels IGCT and GINV to power up the control logic and IGBT isolated drivers.  Determined a low input on the Motor phase control signals (MWU, MVU, MUU) turned on the upper IBGT and a high signal turned on the low side IGBT.   The control lines are pulled up to 12 volts.  The switch point going low is around 6.8 volts and going high is 8 volts.

Some initial testing with the microchip development board.

I removed the Boost converter components to make room for the future control circuits.

 

Cleaned out heat sink compound and put link cap back in.  Also put back the original harness to the inverter control board once I determined that I could alter one of the Prius Battery connectors and use it to bring out the connections I needed.

Made up harness to connect to the Microchip board, bottom of picture, and install inverter unit in car.

Using external current sensors that are centered at 2.5 volts which make it easier to interface to the microchip board. Planning to use the inverter’s built-in current sensor which are centerd at zero and go plus and minus voltage in the future. One of the recent issues was that the external current sensors were saturating at 200 amps messing up the current loops. In November charged up the batteries to try out higher current sensors. Was able to set higher control currents, but still have signifcant control issues just before coming to a stop and still requires too much magnetization current to move the car resulting in Prius inverter overcurrent trips. 

 

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