Students complete hands-on activities to investigate the essential functionality and behavior of energy conversion systems from AC-DC, DC-DC, DC-AC, and AC-AC. Designed for NI ELVIS III.

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In this lab manual, students complete hands-on activities to investigate the essential functionality and behavior of energy conversion systems from AC-DC, DC-DC, DC-AC, and AC-AC. Further consideration is then given to some of the most common power systems that are found in everything from computers to modern electric cars and wind generators.

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Through completing these labs, students will learn to:

  1. Identify the role of Switch Mode Power Supplies, Rectifiers, Inverters, AC Generators, and Transformers in a larger power system. 
  2. Describe the design and function of Buck and Boost SMPS.
  3. Model the theoretical operation of idealized energy conversion devices.
  4. Analyze the real-world operation and efficiency of power systems.




Level University, First or Second Level
Topic Energy Systems
Style Laboratory, Project Based Learning
Prerequisite Skills
  • Introduction to Physics or equivalent
  • Circuits 1 or equivalent
  • Circuits 2 (Semiconductors) or equivalent
  • Basic LabVIEW Proficiency


DC Power

This lab focuses on the most common kind of DC-DC power conversion: the switched-mode power supply. Students will complete hands-on activities that focus on the conversion of DC power into either higher or lower potentials using the SMPS module. Both open loop and closed loop control of the resulting DC potentials are discussed.

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AC Power

This lab covers the parts of a power system that are purely AC. Students complete hands-on activities that cover the generation of AC power, and the conversion of AC power to other potentials using transformers.

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Converting Between AC and DC Power

This lab covers how energy is converted between AC and DC forms. Students will complete activities to produce DC power from AC power using a rectifier, and to produce AC power from DC power using an inverter.

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Power Systems

In this lab, the energy system components explored in the previous labs are combined to form more complex power systems. For both wind power generation and DC power supply applications, students complete activities to analyze the interactions of electrical components and efficiencies of the systems.

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Engineering laboratory solution for project-based learning that combines instrumentation and embedded design with a web-driven experience, delivering a greater understanding of engineering fundamentals and system design.

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Quanser Energy Systems Board for NI ELVIS III

Quanser Energy Systems Board for NI ELVIS III

Application board for NI ELVIS III which provides an experimental platform to introduce system-level concepts of power electronics and energy conversion.

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LabVIEW is systems engineering software for applications that require test, measurement, and control with rapid access to hardware and data insights.

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Detailed Requirements

Required Software

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  • NI ELVIS III Software Bundle (2018 or later)
    • LabVIEW (Requires license)
    • LabVIEW Real-Time Module (Requires license)
    • LabVIEW FPGA Module (Requires license)
    • NI ELVIS III Toolkit

Required Hardware

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