Drive 3-phase appliance motors with integrated PFC inverter

October 28, 2013 // By Graham Prophet
International Rectifier has added to its IR’s iMOTION design platform which integrates digital, analogue and power technologies; the IRAM630-1562F intelligent power module (IPM) has in-built Power Factor Correction (PFC) ahead of its inverter stage. Use it to achieve smaller, energy-efficient appliance and light industrial motor drives, for applications including air conditioners and washing machines.

Introducing its latest iMOTION module, IR's Marco Palma places it in a 10-year development story that is now changing at an exponential pace. Although different markets see different adoption rates, the application that was served by the induction motor now turns by default to the brushless motor. Algorithms that a short time ago were treated with caution are now accepted, he says, and the biggest growth sector of all for this technology is variable speed designs for (for example) washing machines and airconditioners. Sensorless rotor angle estimation derived from motor current is key to this, he adds.

Palma was launching the IRAM630-1562F that combines IR's low loss, trench IGBTs with a three-phase, high-voltage gate drive IC and PFC input stage, integrating more than 30 components into an isolated package. Built-in over-temperature/over-current protection, along with an integrated under-voltage lockout function, and built-in temperature monitor provide for a high level of protection and fail-safe operation. Other integrated features include bootstrap diodes for the high-side drive function and single polarity power supply.

It offers 15A current rating at a case temperature of 25C; delivers up to 2 kW to a motor; has a PFC peak current of 30A; and occupies a n SIP2 package. The IPM’s open emitter configuration enables multi-shunt current feedback for a sophisticated vector control loop, in a V/Hz control loop, with no circuit layout restrictions. Over-temperature is detected internally and triggers a fault condition. IR says that EMI emissions are also minimised due to shorter connection routing, component layout and internal shielding. The module costs $9.25 (10,000).

International Rectifier; www.irf.com