Available in 2022
Course code



10 units


3000 level

Course handbook


Power electronic circuits are an essential component of renewable and distributed energy sources including wind turbines, photovoltaic, marine energy systems and energy storage systems. This course covers the design and implementation of power electronic devices for off-grid and grid connected renewable energy systems. Power quality issues in renewable energy systems are investigated and some solutions are presented.



  • Semester 2 - 2022

Replacing course(s)

This course replaces the following course(s): ELEC3250. Students who have successfully completed ELEC3250 are not eligible to enrol in ELEC3251.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Explain the merits of switching electronic circuits over non-switched circuits in renewable energy power applications.

2. Analyse, design and construct switch mode power supply circuits, specifically the buck, boost and buck-boost converters.

3. Justify the concepts of zero voltage and zero current switching as used in switched mode power supply converters

4. Appraise the design implications of the relevant semiconductor physics issues that impinge on the practical use of power semiconductor devices.

5. Explain the main issues associated with the use of feedback control loops for switched mode power supplies.

6. Explain the operational principles of single and three phase PWM inverters.

7. Classify power quality issues in renewable energy systems; recommend the use of power electronic systems to alleviate power quality problems.

8. Explain the use of power converters in photovoltaic and wind turbine applications.

9. Evaluate and design off-grid and grid connected converter systems for renewables.

10. Recognise the national and international safety standards that are relevant to grid connected inverters for renewable applications.


The course content may include the following topics:

1. Fundamentals of switch mode device operation.

2. Switching electronic devices (Types, characteristics, limitations).

3. DC-DC converters – buck, boost, buck-boost.

4. Rectifiers and controlled rectifiers.

5. Introduction to power quality issues in renewable energy systems.

6. Inverters and PWM control.

7. Multilevel converters and applications.

8. Integration of multiple renewable energy sources.

Assumed knowledge

ELEC2320 Electrical and Electronic Circuits

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Assignment 1

Formal Examination: School Exam

Quiz: Mid Semester Quiz

Written Assignment: Assignment 2

Contact hours



Face to Face On Campus 4 hour(s) per Week for Full Term starting in week 1


Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.