May 01, 2014

Mitsubishi Electric wins first order for SiC traction inverter

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ODAKYU Electric Railway, Japan, will be the launch customer for Mitsubishi Electric's new traction inverter with all-silicon carbide (SiC) power modules using SiC transistors and SiC diodes.

Mitsubishi Electric says this is the world's first order for its 3.3kV 1500A traction inverter for operation on lines electrified at 1.5kV dc. The inverters will be installed in a four-car series 1000 EMU belonging to Odakyu Electric Railway and following tests should enter service in December.

The train will be equipped with a two-level pulse-width-modulation inverter with regenerative braking, and will have four self-cooling 190kW traction motors with parallel control.

Mitsubishi Electric says the new system should reduce energy consumption compared with a conventional series 1000 train by up to 36% when the train is crowded or by 20% during normal occupancy, but these figures will be verified following test running. The system is also 80% smaller than a conventional traction system and weighs 80% less as there are fewer components.

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