SmartCtrl is a design software specifically designed for power electronics applications. This tutorial is intended to guide you, step by step, to design the digital control loop of a buck converter and simulate it with PSIM. This document is the second part of the document “Discrete Digital Control Loop Design”. In this document, a double loop control stage has been designed. To do so, part of
the design is already done in the tutorial “Discrete Digital Control Loop Design” has been used.
Open SmartCtrl and choose a DC-DC converter averaged current mode control. See Figure 1 and select a buck LCS_VMC topology.
Configure the inner loop with the following parameters:
a) Plant: select a buck LCS_VMC topology. See Figure 2.
b) Sensor: select a Hall effect sensor. See Figure 3.
c) Compensator: select a Type 2. See Figure 4.
d) Solution map: select fc=2kHz and PM=40 degrees. See Figure 5.
At this point, the inner control loop is fully defined.
Figure 1: SmartCtrl initial window
Figure 2: Plant parameters
Figure 3: Sensor parameters
Figure 4: Compensator parameters
Figure 5: Solution map point
It is used a Hall effect sensor as an antialiasing filter since the quantity that is sampled (current through the inductor) has a high ripple, when sampling under the Nyquist frequency (typically the switching frequency), an antialiasing filter should be used, or an adequate synchronization with the ripple waveform must be ensured.
In this case, the pole frequency of the Hall effect sensor is 10 kHz as can be seen in Figure 3.
After selecting plant, sensor, and regulator (modulator) parameters, the cross-over frequency fc and the phase margin PM desired for the inner control loop are selected using the graphical aid of the Solution Map.
This design procedure is quite similar to the one done in the tutorial “Discrete Digital Control Loop Design”, so the details have not been covered in full depth.
Configure the outer loop with the following parameters:
a) Sensor: select a voltage divider sensor. See Figure 6.
b) Compensator: select a PI. See Figure 7.
c) Solution map: select fc=1kHz and PM=100 degrees. See Figure 8.
At this point, the outer control loop is fully defined.
Note that the outer loop compensator does not include any information regarding the modulator as the modulator is included in the inner loop.
Figure 6: Outer loop sensor
Figure 7: Outer loop compensator
Figure 8: Outer loop solution map
At this point, the analog control loop has been calculated. Then, by clicking in the “Digital settings” icon, the dialog box asking for digital loop parameters (sampling frequency, bits number, and accumulated delay) appears. See Figure 9 and Figure 10.
Figure 9: Discretise tool in SmartCtrl
Note that different parameters can be used for the inner loop and the outer loop.
In this case, both loops have the same sampling frequency (equal to the switching frequency), the same number of bits (16), and the same accumulated delay. By checking the check-box “Calculate digital compensator” and clicking on the “OK” button, both inner and outer digital regulators are calculated.
Figure 10: Discretizing parameters for the inner and outer loop
The button “export to PSIM (schematic)” allows exporting the entire design to PSIM (see the document “Digital control loop design” for more detail. See Figure 11 and Figure 12. The exported schematic is shown in Figure 13.
Figure 11: SmartCtrl export to PSIM button
Figure 12: Exporting options
Figure 13: PSIM exported schematic
The result of the time domain simulation can be seen in Figure 14. It can be seen how the output voltage is exactly 14V which is the value specified in SmartCtrl.
Figure 14: Time-domain simulation result
In order to simulate the digital open-loop transfer function corresponding to the inner loop, more additional elements are added to the schematic. First, the outer loop is disabled, and then an adder, a sinusoidal voltage source, and an AC probe are added to perform the AC sweep and measure the current loop. See Figure 15 and Figure 16.
Figure 15: Inner open-loop gain measurement
Figure 16: Inner open-loop gain measurement result
Save the data with File -> save as -> PSIM_inner_loop_Ac_sweep.txt
In the SmartCtrl project select the inner loop (Figure 17) and click in File -> Import (see Figure 18).
Figure 17: Selecting the inner loop in SmartCtrl
Figure 18: Importing data wizard
In Figure 19 it has been compared open-loop gain of inner loop:
a) Analog system -> dark pink trace
b) Discretized system -> light pink trace
c) PSIM measured -> green trace
It can be seen how all of them are equal at cross-frequency and quite similar until
half of switching frequency.
Figure 19: SmartCtrl open-loop gain of inner loop comparison
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