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30 November, 2023

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Power switches are all-in-one

01 July, 2001

Power switches are all-in-one

The American Superconductor Corporation (ASC) has developed a power electronic "switch", designed to replace conventional power converters, inverters, controls and related components with a single integrated device. The PowerModule can be programmed to perform power switching, modulation and control functions in a wide range of applications including uninterruptible power supplies, flywheels and power quality systems.

The initial module is rated at 125kW, but ASC plans to offer versions from 50kW to 1MW by next March. "The modular design, which includes programmable controls and fibre optic communications, allows us to create power switches with ratings from 50kW to tens of megawatts at a low price point," says ASC chief executive Dr Greg Yurek.

The modules are based on a proprietary printed circuit board design that allows automated assembly of the switch components to produce a rugged, low-cost product. The technology has been proven in hundreds of 250kW modules used in commercial superconducting magnetic energy storage systems.

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