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Assessing the vulnerability of solar inverters to EMPs: Port testing, PCI modeling, and protection strategies

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113931 to 11

Renewable energy sources are becoming an ever-larger contributor to the power grid. These renewable energy sources depend upon the power electronic devices, specifically inverters, being essential for connecting Photovoltaic (PV) generation to the grid. However, the Electromagnetic Pulses (EMPs) caused by the high-altitude nuclear explosions can generate fast broad-band pulses with nanosecond rise time, potentially causing damage or destruction to electronic components. To assess the vulnerability of PV inverters to high-altitude EMPs, the port testing and Pulsed Current Injection (PCI) modeling schemes are proposed based on the port impedance analysis. Wide-band frequency measurements are achieved by fusing impedance results from three vector network analyzers. Then, a PCI model is used to simulate the induced response to EMP, with two typical immunity levels of EC5 and EC8 tested. The experiment successfully excites the induced voltage and current under EMP, where the voltage and current can reach 1500V/40A and 8000V/150Aunder EC5 andEC8, respectively. The port vulnerability analysis results demonstrate that only some ports can survive under EC5. To defend against the impact of EMP, three protection strategies are discussed.