Faculty Candidate Seminar

Optimal Design and Control of Electromechanical Energy Converters via Field Reconstruction Method

Babak FahimiPh.D.University of Texas at Arlington

With nearly 60% of the electricity that is generated worldwide being consumed in electromechanical energy converters (EMEC), development of efficiency optimization for these actuators forms an integral part of any conservative energy policy. Furthermore, integration of EMEC’S in high impact applications such as automotive, energy harvesting, and biomedical apparatus necessitates fault resilience, self healing, and robustness. In particular, electrification of land, sea, and air vehicles demand high grade, fault tolerant, and compact solutions in the area of adjustable speed motor/generator drives.
In order to address these requirements development of time-efficient, yet precise numerical tools for analysis and synthesis of power electronic-driven EMEC deems necessary. The conventional practice in design of adjustable speed drives have been focused on a hierarchical paradigm in which various steps of optimal design have been conducted irrespective of the impact of the other steps of design. In this environment, boundary conditions in design are not flexible and iterations will be merely done within the scope of particular design stage (i.e. magnetic design, power electronic design, control design, etc.). The primary driving force in this design philosophy has been the computational cost/time and the absence of a computational tool that can allow an integrated design approach between various parts of the project.
Field Reconstruction Method (FRM) has demonstrated superior performance in replacing the time consuming and redundant FE analysis without any sacrifice in accuracy. Due to its impressive computational speed and integrative formulation, FRM has been successfully applied to several design, health monitoring, multi-physics, and real time control applications. In this seminar, fundamentals of the FRM as well as several examples of application of the FRM in optimal design and control of EMEC will be presented.

Babak Fahimi received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Texas A&M in 1999. He is the recipient of Richard M. Bass young power electronics investigator award from IEEE power electronics society in 2003, the Office of naval Research young investigator award in 2004, Ralph-Teetor educational award from SAE in 2008, and German academic exchange international fellowship in 1993-1995. He holds three US patents and has nine more pending. He was the technical program co-chair for 2005 international conference on electric machines and drives (IEMDC) and was the general chairman of the IEEE Vehicle Power and propulsion conference which was held in Arlington, TX during September 9-12, 2007. He was the general chairman of the IEEE Applied Power Electronics and Exposition (APEC) in 2010. Currently he is an associate professor in the department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Texas-Arlington where he has founded the research and educational program on renewable energy systems and vehicular technology. He is the co-author of over 180 scientific articles in his field of research. He is also a senior member of IEEE as well as a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE).

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