Sensata Technologies Holding has been granted a patent for a bidirectional DC/DC converter system. The system includes a control system with outer and inner control loops, and a converter with multiple half-bridges connected to different ports. The control system compares command values for voltage, current, or power with actual values and adjusts the switching signal duty value accordingly. GlobalData’s report on Sensata Technologies Holding gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Sensata Technologies Holding, photovoltaic cell testing was a key innovation area identified from patents. Sensata Technologies Holding's grant share as of September 2023 was 57%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Dc/dc converter system with bidirectional voltage conversion

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Sensata Technologies Holding plc

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11757361B2) describes a DC/DC converter that includes multiple half-bridges connected together. The converter comprises four half-bridges, each consisting of two switches connected at a junction. The first and second half-bridges are connected together at a node, as are the third and fourth half-bridges. The junction of the switches in the first half-bridge is connected to the junction of the switches in the third half-bridge. Similarly, the junction of the switches in the second half-bridge is connected to the junction of the switches in the fourth half-bridge.

In one embodiment, the first and second half-bridges are connected in series between the first and second terminals of the first port, while the third and fourth half-bridges are connected in series between the first and second terminals of the second port. The converter can be used to connect an electrical energy source, such as a battery or a photovoltaic array, to a load or an energy storage device. The connections between the half-bridges and the external devices are made through the ports of the converter.

The converter also includes inductors and capacitors for improved performance. A first inductor is connected to the junction of the switches in the first half-bridge and the third half-bridge, while a second inductor is connected to the junction of the switches in the second half-bridge and the fourth half-bridge. Additionally, capacitors are connected between the terminals of the ports and the nodes of the half-bridges.

Another embodiment of the converter includes four half-bridges connected in series, with each half-bridge having three ports and a pair of switches. The pair of switches in each half-bridge is connected in series, and the junction between the switches is connected to a third port. The first pair of half-bridges is connected to a first external electrical device, while the second pair is connected to a second external electrical device. The third port of one half-bridge in the first pair is connected to the third port of one half-bridge in the second pair.

Overall, this patented DC/DC converter design offers a flexible and efficient solution for connecting electrical energy sources to loads or energy storage devices. The use of multiple half-bridges and the inclusion of inductors and capacitors contribute to improved performance and reliability.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.