Power electronics education using Mathcad
Kennedy, Robert T.
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Advancement in technology and the resulting affects on curriculum content in an attempt to meet employer's needs requires careful consideration to avoid 'over pruning' essential basics. Developing delivery methodology that reduces the labour of the exercise yet does not mask the need for the student to have a critical understanding of the problem is a desirable compromise. Mathcad as a Power Electronics teaching aid and application to developing interactive design nomograms provides both students and designers with a possible solution. The ac-ac converter, one of the four main power processing converter topologies, is used to demonstrate the use of Mathcad to display system waveforms, provide device design data, develop system performance curves and to create interactive design nomograms. The importance of power quality and the essential requirement in many countries to comply with the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) regulations has recently been incorporated into the curriculum and is also supported by the methods described. The Power Electronic application in this paper is intended to introduce undergraduates to a software package used world wide in both Industry and Academia and to provide them with transferable skills to other applications and disciplines.