Alencon Systems LLC has launched its new line of high voltage DC:DC converters with a nifty acronym, the CUBE, to complement its existing line of galvanically isolated DC:DC optimizers, the SPOT and the BOSS. The CUBE, which stands for Combined Universal Buck/Boost Power Electronics, is a very compact centralized DC:DC optimizer that can support 1000 and 1500 volt DC:DC applications.
The CUBE is available in two modalities – the CUBE-PV for solar applications and the CUBE-ES for battery energy storage applications. Alencon says a differentiator of the CUBE is its level of power density, which is about five times higher than other non-isolated DC:DC converters in a similar power class. The CUBE achieves its power density via a silicon carbide-based powertrain.
For large-scale photovoltaic installations, the CUBE-PV can increase the energy yield of projects using larger central inverters. For such projects, the CUBE will increase the voltage to a central inverter and thus allow the inverter to operate at higher utilization. By doing so, large-scale photovoltaic power plants can be built with fewer power supplies and therefore at a significantly lower cost.
Additionally, by operating at a higher voltage and lower current, the CUBE-PV allows less copper to be used in the system balance. The CUBE-PV enables photovoltaic power plants to be “ready for storage” and can be an excellent tool for re-powering old photovoltaic generators.
For battery energy storage applications, the CUBE-ES is ideal for integrating batteries into solar + DC-coupled storage projects and for stepping up voltage from low voltage batteries to high voltage power conversion systems (PCS). Due to its high switching frequency, the CUBE provides very little additional fault current to a battery energy storage system.
“Adding the CUBE to Alencon’s product line is in line with our mission to become the premier supplier of high power, high voltage DC:DC optimizers for the alternative energy industry.”
For example, the CUBE-PV can be combined with the Alencon BOSS to create highly cost effective fixed voltage DC bus solar projects and storage projects.
The CUBE is currently patent pending with the United States Patent Office and built in the Philadelphia area factory of Alencon.
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