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This book is intended to be an introductory text in power electronics, primarily for the undergraduate electrical engineering student. The text assumes that the student is familiar with general circuit analysis techniques usually taught at the sophomore level. The student should be acquainted with electronic devices such as diodes and transistors, but the emphasis of this text is on circuit topology and function rather than on devices. Understanding the voltage-current relationships for linear devices is the primary background required, and the concept of Fourier series is also important.
Most topics presented in this text are appropriate for junior- or senior-level undergraduate electrical engineering students. The text is designed to be used for a one-semester power electronics course, with appropriate topics selected or omitted by the instructor. The text is written for some flexibility in the order of the topics. It is recommended that Chap. 2 on power computations be covered at the beginning of the course in as much detail as the instructor deems necessary for the level of students.

Chapters 6 and 7 on dc-dc converters and dc power supplies may be taken before Chaps. 3, 4, and 5 on rectifiers and voltage controllers. The author covers chapters in the order 1, 2 (introduction; power computations), 6, 7 (dc-dc converters; dc power supplies), 8 (inverters), 3, 4, 5 (rectifiers and voltage controllers), followed by coverage of selected topics in 9 (resonant converters) and 10 (drive and snubber circuits and heat sinks). Some advanced material, such as the control section in Chapter 7, may be omitted in an introductory course.
The student should use all the software tools available for the solution to the equations that describe power electronics circuits. These range from calculators with built-in functions such as integration and root finding to more powerful computer software packages such as MATLAB®, Mathcad®, Maple™, Mathematica®, and others. Numerical techniques are often suggested in this text. It is up to the student to select and adapt all the readily available computer tools to the power electronics situation. Much of this text includes computer simulation using PSpice® as a supplement to analytical circuit solution techniques.

Some prior experience with PSpice is helpful but not necessary. Alternatively, instructors may choose to use a different simulation program such as PSIM® or NI Multisim™ software instead of PSpice. Computer simulation is never intended to replace understanding of fundamental principles. It is the author’s belief that using computer simulation for the instructional benefit of investigating the basic behavior of power electronics circuits adds a dimension to the student’s learning that is not possible from strictly manipulating equations. Observing voltage and current waveforms from a computer simulation accomplishes some of the same objectives as those of a laboratory experience.
In a computer simulation, all the circuit’s voltages and currents can be investigated, usually much more efficiently than in a hardware lab. Variations in circuit performance for a change in components or operating parameters can be accomplished more easily with a computer simulation than in a laboratory. PSpice circuits presented in this text do not necessarily represent the most elegant way to simulate circuits. Students are encouraged to use their engineering skills to improve the simulation circuits wherever possible. The website that accompanies this text can be found at www.mhhe .com/hart, and features Capture circuit files for PSpice simulation for students and instructors and a password-protected solutions manual and PowerPoint® lecture notes for instructors.