Reflections

"One idea changed everything"

Nils Bäckman heads up Eltek's R&D team in Stockholm, Sweden

His team got an assignment: Design a high-efficiency inverter for a telecom system. It was challenging. But then one of the team members had an idea that changed everything and paved the way for something new: The bidirectional Rectiverter.

Nils explains: "I remember so well when my colleague came up to me and said that he had an idea, and explained to me how we could do it. Shivers went down my spine. Could it work? My colleague went on holiday, and when he came back a few weeks later, we had a prototype up and running in the lab. That was a special moment."

This was the technology for a soft switched highly efficient bidirectional DC/DC converter. "Not only are we able to control the converter in reverse and forward mode, we can also switch instantaneously between the two modes of operation".

In the telecom community and elsewhere, inverter systems are both costly and complicated. In addition they require a separate rectifier system in order to charge the batteries and feed the DC-load. In an AC-UPS, an Automatic Transfer Switch is also required. The Rectiverter includes all of this into one box, in this case, the one and only Flatpack2 box.

"We have also developed a version of our Smartpack controller, and have all the building blocks for building flexible Rectiverter systems with both AC and DC output", says Nils.

However, building systems is not Nils and the other "fathers" of invention's focus. They are already far into projects that will push the technological borders of power conversion further.

Mar 03, 2016
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