We would like to give our sincere thanks to the people who are directly or indirectly attached in completion of our project “ELECTRICAL ENRGY THROUGH SOUND” during the academic year 2009-2010.

We express our deep obligation to “Mr. FAHEEMULLAH, H.O.D. of ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING” for his kind initiation, invaluable guidance and keen interest throughout the project work, and preparation of this report. We are also grateful to “Mr. SHAHEBAN” Electrical Engineering Department for his worthy help in progressing the work. Last but not least we wish to express our sincere thanks to all our professors, friends and colleagues who helped us directly or indirectly in the completion of this project.


1 Construction

• • • • • • • •

2 Polarity 3 Safety 4 Electrical behavior of electrolytics 5 Capacitance 6 Variants 7 See also 8 External links References

This project is to construct a Sound Battery (generation of electrical energy by sound energy) and to study the current variation

by different sound frequencies in front of speaker working as microphone under Faraday’s Law. The main idea behind this project is that Now day’s there are so many vehicles running on the road’s with which there is a lot’s of noise pollution on the road’s. Government has made many rules to stop this but still it is same as before. We have try to solve this problem, but we also cannot get the solution for this. So finally we decided that if we cannot stop this noise pollution, we can take use of this noise pollution in our daily life by generating electricity with it. The project appears to be very simple (and it is ), but the important basic electronic operation are very profound. Virtually every electronic circuit in our house uses one or more of the concepts we are about to consider. In brief the circuit operation is as follows. Loud sounds received by the speaker generate AC voltage. The transformer steps these AC voltages up to a higher level so that may be more effective in causing a meter reading. The diode (bridge rectifier) changes the AC voltage into DC voltage which is required to drive the meter or LED (light emmiting diode). The meter uses the DC current to move the pointer (needle) of the meter so that we can see the effect of the generated electrical energy.


5. 3. this consists of some components which are :1.The project is basically used to generation of electrical energy by sound energy. Electrolytic capacitor Micro Volt Meter or LED SPEAKER . Speaker Transformer (step up) Diode (bridge rectifier) 4. 2.

it moves the air particles around it. To see how this works. creating a drop in pressure that pulls in on more surrounding air particles. which collide with the particles in front of them and so on. Those air particles in turn move the air particles around them. The term loudspeaker is used to refer to both the device itself. When the bell flexes away. This decreasing of pressure is called rarefaction. let's look at a simple vibrating object -. but air is the transmission medium when we listen to speakers). . is an electromechanical transducer which converts an electrical signal into sound. An object produces sound when it vibrates in air (sound can also travel through liquids and solids. which creates another drop in pressure that pulls in particles that are even farther out and so on. and a complete system consisting of one or more loudspeaker drivers (as the individual units are often called) in an enclosure. When it flexes out on one side. or speaker.rapidly. it pulls in on these surrounding air particles. you first need to understand how sound works. your brain interprets the vibrations as sound -that's how you hear.flexes in and out -. . Inside your ear is a very thin piece of skin called the eardrum. carrying the pulse of the vibration through the air as a traveling disturbance. the metal vibrates -. Rapid changes in air pressure are the most common thing to vibrate your eardrum.a bell. When something vibrates. Sound Basics To understand what and how speakers work. it pushes out on the surrounding air particles on that side. These air particles then collide with the particles in front of them.A loudspeaker. When you ring a bell. When your eardrum vibrates.

• A microphone works something like our ears. In the next section. and we register this sensation as a higher volume.This is the wave's amplitude. the amplifier sends it to the speaker. it vibrates the eardrum back and forth. It has a diaphragm that is vibrated by sound waves in an area. just like the ones originally picked up by the microphone. a vibrating object sends a wave of pressure fluctuation through the atmosphere. which re-interprets it into physical vibrations. which determines how loud the sound is. The signal from a microphone gets encoded on a tape or CD as an electrical signal. the pitch is lower. Differentiating Sound We hear different sounds from different vibrating objects because of variations in: Sound-wave frequency . Sound waves with greater amplitudes move our ear drums more.A higher wave frequency simply means that the air pressure fluctuates faster. Good speakers are optimized to produce extremely accurate fluctuations in air pressure. When there are fewer fluctuations in a period of time. When you play this signal back on your stereo. • Air-pressure level . When the fluctuation wave reaches your ear.In this way. we'll see how the speaker accomplishes this. Our brain interprets this motion as sound. Making Sound . We hear this as a higher pitch.

we saw that sound travels in waves of air pressure fluctuation. This vibrates the air in front of the speaker. We also learned that microphones translate sound waves into electrical signals. so does the direction of repulsion and attraction. and the negative pole of the electromagnet is repelled by the permanent magnet's negative pole. creating sound waves. When the electromagnet's polar orientation switches. CD. and that we hear sounds differently depending on the frequency and amplitude of these waves. etc. like a piston. LP. etc. tapes. dictates the rate and distance that the voice coil moves. LPs.the reverse of the microphone. which can be encoded onto CDs. The electrical audio signal can also be interpreted as a wave. When the coil moves. The frequency and amplitude of this wave. Players convert this stored information back into an electric current for use in the stereo system. When everything is working as it should. Making Sound: Magnets So how does the fluctuation make the speaker coil move back and forth? The electromagnet is positioned in a constant magnetic field created by a permanent magnet.In the last section. In this way. The positive end of the electromagnet is attracted to the negative pole of the permanent magnetic field. It takes the electrical signal and translates it back into physical vibrations to create sound waves. the speaker produces nearly the same vibrations that the microphone originally recorded and encoded on a tape. the alternating current constantly reverses the magnetic forces between the voice coil and the permanent magnet. These two magnets -. which represents the original sound wave. .the electromagnet and the permanent magnet -. This pushes the coil back and forth rapidly. it pushes and pulls on the speaker cone. A speaker is essentially the final translation machine -.interact with each other as any two magnets do.

the current going through the speaker moves one way and then reverses and flows the other way. In the next section.This. If you've ever hooked up a stereo system.a "north" end and and a "south" end -. loudspeaker units typically divide a wide frequency range among multiple drivers. But unlike a permanent magnet. fluctuating between a positive charge and a negative charge on the red wire and black wire. determines the frequency and amplitude of the sound waves produced by the diaphragm. Different driver sizes are better suited for certain frequency ranges. such as iron.and it is attracted to iron objects. then you know that there are two output wires for each speaker -. Essentially. magnetizing the metal it is wrapped around.typically a black one and a red one. . For this reason. Running electrical current through the wire creates a magnetic field around the coil. If you reverse the flow of the current. Since electrons always flow in the same direction between positively charged particles and negatively charged particles. The field acts just like the magnetic field around a permanent magnet: It has a polar orientation -.it constantly reverses the flow of electricity. usually wrapped around a piece of magnetic metal. in turn. we'll find out how speakers divide up the frequency range. Making Sound: Voice Coil The voice coil is a basic electromagnet. This is exactly what a stereo signal does -. the north and south ends of the electromagnet switch. and we'll look at the main driver types used in loudspeakers. in an electromagnet you can alter the orientation of the poles. This alternating current causes the polar orientation of the electromagnet to reverse itself many times a second. you know that an electromagnet is a coil of wire. the amplifier is constantly switching the electrical signal.

A mid-range speaker. while others become unusable below 50 or 60 Hz.Types Of Speakers: A woofer is a driver capable of reproducing low (bass) frequencies. is designed to cover the middle of the audio spectrum. Some woofers are capable of very deep bass performance in the proper enclosure. . Whilst some woofers can cover the audio band from bass to 3 kHz. The usable frequency range varies widely according to design. others only work up to 1 kHz or less. Midranges are used when the other drivers are incapable of adequately covering the mid audio range. also called a squawker. usually from about somewhere around 3-5 kHz up to 20 kHz and beyond. A tweeter is a driver capable of reproducing the higher end of the audio spectrum. typically from 200 Hz to about 45 kHz.

which induces a voltage in the other windings.Transformer A transformer is an electrical device that transfers energy from one circuit to another by magnetic coupling. and all flux linking the primary winding also links the secondary winding. All operate with the same basic principles and with many similarities in their parts. Coupling by mutual induction The principles of the transformer are illustrated by consideration of a hypothetical ideal transformer. The transformer is one of the simplest of electrical devices. and. yet transformer designs and materials continue to be improved. Transformers come in a range of sizes from a thumbnail-sized coupling transformer hidden inside a stage microphone to huge gigawatt units used to interconnect large portions of national power grids. Energy is coupled between the windings by the time varying magnetic flux that passes through (links) both . In this case. in most cases. A changing voltage applied to one winding creates a time-varying magnetic flux in the core. A simple transformer consists of two electrical conductors called the primary winding and the secondary winding. without requiring relative motion between its parts. the core requires negligible magnemotive force to sustain flux. a magnetic core to concentrate magnetic flux. The hypothetical ideal transformer has no resistance in its coils. A transformer comprises two or more coupled windings.

Whenever the amount of current in a coil changes. a voltage is induced in the neighboring coil.primary and secondary windings. If a time-varying voltage is applied to the primary winding of turns. called mutual inductance. the voltage induced across the primary winding is proportional to the rate of change of flux: and where vP and vS are the voltages across the primary winding and secondary winding. so MMF tries to drive magnetic flux through a magnetic circuit. The primary MMF produces a varying magnetic flux in the core. induces a back electromotive force (EMF) in opposition to . The effect. a current will flow in it producing a magnetomotive force (MMF). with an open circuit secondary winding. In accordance with Faraday's law of induction. Just as an electromotive force (EMF) drives current around an electric circuit. and. . is an example of electromagnetic induction.

The ratio of the currents in the primary and secondary circuits is inversely proportional to the turns ratio. The resulting increase in MMF due to the primary current offsets the effect of the opposing secondary MMF. the voltage per turn is the same for both windings. The MMF produced by current in the secondary winding opposes the MMF of the primary winding and so tends to cancel the flux in the core. Since the reduced flux reduces the EMF induced in the primary winding. the ratio of the primary and secondary voltages is equal to the ratio of the number of turns in their windings. the flux density will always stay the same as long as the primary voltage is steady.NP and NS are the numbers of turns in the primary winding and secondary winding. . Substituting and solving for the voltages shows that: where vp and vs are voltages across primary and secondary. increased current flows in the primary circuit. the electrical energy fed into the primary winding is delivered to the secondary winding. or alternatively. In this way. Np and Ns are the numbers of turns in the primary and secondary. In the hypothetical ideal transformer. suppose a power of 50 watts is supplied to a resistive load from a transformer with a turns ratio of 25:2. (See note 1) Now with transformer change: . In addition. or equivalently. respectively. the primary and secondary windings are perfectly coupled. For example. P = EI (power = electromotive force × current) 50 W = 2 V × 25 A in the primary circuit if the load is a resistive load. The EMF in the secondary winding will cause current to flow in a secondary circuit. dΦP / dt and dΦS / dt are the derivatives of the flux with respect to time of the primary and secondary windings. Hence in an ideal transformer.

it produces a steady MMF and so steady flux in the core.50 W = 25 V × 2 A in the secondary circuit. Since a direct current by definition does not change. the relationship for either winding between its number of turns. a is the cross-sectional area of the core in square metres B is the peak magnetic flux density in teslas. Operation at different frequencies . N is the number of turns of wire on the winding. f is the frequency in hertz. this quantity does not change and so cannot induce a voltage in the secondary winding. The universal electromotive force (EMF) equation If the flux in the core is sinusoidal. In a practical transformer. Other consistent systems of units can be used with the appropriate conversions in the equation. voltage. magnetic flux density and core cross-sectional area is given by the universal emf equation (from Faraday's law): where E is the sinusoidal rms or root mean square voltage of the winding. direct current applied to the winding will create only heat.

operation of a transformer at its designed voltage but at a higher frequency than intended will lead to reduced magnetising (no load primary) current. impedance matching. transformers can be physically more compact without reaching saturation. By application (power supply. etc. amplifier output. and cooling to establish if safe operation is practical. the magnetising current may increase to an excessive level. For example. radio frequency(RF)) By voltage class (a few volts to about 750 kilovolts) By cooling type (air cooled. so-called "volts per hertz" protection relays. audio. By frequency range (power. fan cooled. However.). water cooled. with the rated voltage applied. By operating at higher frequencies. to protect the transformer from overvoltage at higher-than-rated frequency which may occur if a generator loses its connected load. losses. Classifications Transformers are adapted to numerous engineering applications and may be classified in many ways: By power level (from fraction of a volt-ampere(VA) to over a thousand MVA). Operation of a power transformer at other than its design frequency may require assessment of voltages. arc furnace. By ratio of the number of turns in the coils Circuit symbols . also increase with frequency. and a given core is able to transfer more power. transformers at hydroelectric generating stations may be equipped with overexcitation protection. etc.The equation shows that the EMF of a transformer at a given flux density increases with frequency. such as losses within the core and skin-effect. rectifier.) By purpose (distribution. Generally. oil filled. circuit isolation). At a frequency lower than the design value. other properties of the transformer.

WINDINGS • Energy Losses An ideal transformer would have no losses. Small transformers. energy is dissipated due both to the resistance of the windings known as copper loss or I2R loss. The dots show the relative winding configuration of the windings. may be less than 85% efficient. Transformer with three windings. such as a plug-in "power brick" used to power small consumer electronics. and would therefore be 100% efficient. in general. Step-down or step-up transformer. The symbol shows which winding has more turns. which prevents capacitive coupling between the. but does not usually show the exact ratio. In practice. .75%.Standard symbols Transformer with two windings and iron core. and to magnetic effects primarily attributable to the core (known as iron loss). highly efficient: large power transformers (over 50 MVA) may attain an efficiency as high as 99. Transformer with electrostatic screen. Transformers are.

At higher frequencies. Magnetostriction Magnetic flux in the core causes it to physically expand and contract slightly with the alternating magnetic field (producing a buzzing sound). The amount of hysteresis is a function of the particular core material. Adding silicon also has the advantage of stopping ageing of the electrical steel that was a problem years ago.Transformer losses Winding resistance Current flowing through the windings causes resistive heating of the conductors (I2 R loss). Silicon is added to the steel to help in controlling eddy currents. causing resistive heating. This in turn causes losses due to frictional heating in susceptible ferromagnetic cores. an effect known as magnetostriction. a small amount of energy is lost to hysteresis within the magnetic core. Mechanical losses . skin effect and proximity effect create additional winding resistance and losses. Eddy currents Induced eddy currents circulate within the core. Hysteresis losses Each time the magnetic field is reversed.

and consuming a small amount of power. Construction A) Cores i) Steel cores Transformers for use at power or audio frequencies have cores made of many thin laminations of silicon steel. it. Winding resistance dominates load-losses. By concentrating the magnetic flux. oil pumps or water-cooled heat exchangers designed to remove the heat caused by copper and iron losses. Losses may be either load-dependent('load-losses') or independent of it ('no-load loss'). creating a familiar humming or buzzing noise. whereas hysteresis and eddy currents losses contribute to over 99% of the noload loss. Cooling system Large power transformers may be equipped with cooling fans.In addition to magnetostriction. such as the transformer's support structure. has . too. more of it is usefully linked by both primary and secondary windings. These incite vibrations within nearby metalwork. The power used to operate the cooling system is typically considered part of the losses of the transformer. the alternating magnetic field causes fluctuating electromagnetic forces between the primary and secondary windings. and be converted to heat. A portion of the leakage flux may induce eddy currents within nearby conductive objects. Since the steel core is conductive. Stray losses Not all the magnetic field produced by the primary is intercepted by the secondary.

leading to the name "EI transformer". and the lower the losses. It is then cut in two forming two C shapes. Usually two Ccores are used to shorten the return path for the magnetic flux resulting in a form similar to the EI. they have the advantage. some area is lost for a rectangular winging. The cost goes up when using thinner laminations mainly over the labor in stacking them. it is removed from the form and the laminations are bonded together.currents induced in it by the changing magnetic flux. The core is then assembled by placing the two C halves together. all the E's are stacked on one side. and holding them closed by a steel strap. The E-pieces are pressed together to reduce the gap width to that of the insulation. Due to the bending of the core. The cut core or C-core is made by winding a silicon steel strip around a rectangular form. More cores would necessitate a triangular cross-section. the laminations are stacked in what is known as an interleaved fashion. For this to work the flux has to gradually flow from one E to the other. Like toroidal cores. the lower the eddy currents. The thin laminations are used to reduce the eddy currents. The gap area is very large. In the EI transformer. That means saturation occurs at half the flux density. That means that on one end all flux is only on every second E. After the required thickness is achieved. usually after a few cycles of the applied . A typical laminated core is made from E-shaped and I-shaped pieces. Very thin laminations are generally used on high frequency transformers. Using a longer E and wedging it with two small Is will increase the overlap and additionally make the grains more parallel to the flux (think of a wooden frame for a window). that the flux is always in the oriented parallel the grains. Each layer is insulated from the adjacent layer to reduce the energy lost to eddy current heating of the core. Due to this interleaving a second gap in parallel (in an analogy to electronic circuits) to the gap between E and I is formed between the E-pieces. and the insulation is used to keep the laminations from acting as a solid piece of steel. the residual field will cause a high inrush current until the effect of the remanent magnetism is reduced. so that the effective gap width is very small (in analogy to a capacitor). The faces of the cuts are then ground smooth so they fit very tight with a very small gap to reduce losses. and all the I's on the other creating a gap. The thinner the laminations. If an air gap is needed (which is unlikely considering the low remanence available for steel). A steel core's remanence means that it retains a static magnetic field when power is removed. When power is then reapplied.

Military gear includes 400 Hz (and other frequencies) to supply power for radar or servomechanisms. level. especially audio transformers that have a DC component added. over the life of the transformer. Overcurrent protection devices such as fuses must be selected to allow this harmless inrush to pass. or add magnetic shunts (which bypass a portion of magnetic flux that would otherwise link the primary and secondary windings) in order to intentionally add leakage inductance. On transformers connected to long overhead power transmission lines. The additional leakage inductance limits the secondary winding's short circuit current to a safe. Certain special purpose transformers use long magnetic paths. The thinner steel laminations serve to reduce the eddy currents. induced currents due to geomagnetic disturbances during solar storms can cause saturation of the core. Ferrite is used in higher frequency applications. In order to maintain good voltage regulation. Ferrite.alternating current. Aircraft traditionally use 400 Hz power systems since the slight increase in thermal losses is more than offset by the reduction in core and winding weight. Steel cores develop a larger hysteresis loss due to eddy currents as the operating frequency is increased. or safely handle loads that may become periodically short-circuited such as electric arc welders. Some types of very thin steel laminations can operate at up to 10 kHz or higher. distribution transformers are designed to have very low leakage inductance. so-called "metal glasses" — the high cost of the core material is offset by the lower losses incurred at light load. or a controlled. and neon signs. and false operation of transformer protection devices. or thinner steel laminations for the core are typically used for frequencies above 1kHz. ii) Solid cores . extending to the VHF band and beyond. Gaps are also used to keep a transformer from saturating. insert air gaps. Distribution transformers can achieve low off-load losses by using cores made with low loss high permeability silicon steel and amorphous (non-crystalline) steel. mercury vapor lamps. This technique is used to stabilize the output current for loads that exhibit negative resistance such as electric arcs.

radio-frequencies (RF).Powdered iron cores are used in circuits (such as switch-mode power supplies) that operate above mains frequencies and up to a few tens of kilohertz. other types of cores made from non-conductive magnetic ceramic materials. The top right is toroidal. from powdered iron. called ferrites. including toroids. The cross-section of the ring is usually square or rectangular. iii) Air cores High-frequency transformers may also use air cores. but more expensive cores with circular crosssections are also available. These materials combine high magnetic permeability with high bulk electrical resistivity. These eliminate the loss due to hysteresis in the core material. and also provides screening to minimize the core's magnetic field from generating electromagnetic interference. The bottom right is from a 12 VAC wall wart supply. improving the transformer's efficiency by reducing the core's reluctance. Such transformers maintain high coupling efficiency (low stray field loss) by overlapping the primary and secondary windings. The strip construction ensures that the grain boundaries are optimally aligned. This minimises the length of wire needed. . are common. At even higher. depending on operating frequency. Toroidal transformers are built around a ring-shaped core. Other shapes include so-called E-cores and C-cores. Some RF transformers also have moveable cores (sometimes called slugs) which allow adjustment of the coupling coefficient (and bandwidth) of tuned radio-frequency circuits. Cores are available in a wide variety of shapes. The primary and secondary coils are often wound concentrically to cover the entire surface of the core. which is made from a long strip of silicon steel or permalloy wound into a coil. iv) Toroidal cores Various transformers. The closed ring shape eliminates air gaps inherent in the construction of an EI core. or ferrite.

and in the different windings. flat toroid or a tall. and sometimes additional insulation. Small distribution transformers may achieve some of the benefits of a toroidal core by splitting it and forcing it open. compared to EI types. insulated usually with enamel. The conducting material used for the winding depends upon the application. lower exterior magnetic field (about one tenth). Small power and signal transformers are wound with solid copper wire. When fitting a toroidal transformer. depending on the space available. Magnet wire is a copper wire with a coating of varnish or some other synthetic coating. must be electrically insulated from each other. Strip conductors are . typically between a few tens of kilohertz to a megahertz. physical size. This can happen if the steel mounting bolt in the middle of the core is allowed to touch metalwork at both ends. This last point means that. to reduce losses. single-bolt mounting. The wire used is generally magnet wire. which is a varnished type of magnet wire. or aluminium rectangular conductors. then inserting a bobbin containing primary and secondary windings. Such a loop could result in a dangerously large current flowing in the bolt. Toroidal transformers are more efficient than the cheaper laminated EI types of similar power level. As a consequence. low off-load losses (making them more efficient in standby circuits). Transformers for years have used Formvar wire. narrow one with the same electrical properties can be chosen. and more choice of shapes. toroidal transformers are uncommon above ratings of a few kVA. either a wide. include smaller size (about half). The main disadvantages are higher cost and limited size. it is important to avoid making an unintentional short-circuit through the core. copper.Ferrite toroid cores are used at higher frequencies. B) Windings The wire of the adjacent turns in a coil. making a loop of conductive material that passes through the hole in the toroid. for a given power output. and weight of switch-mode power supplies. lower weight (about half). less mechanical hum (making them superior in audio amplifiers). Other advantages. A drawback of toroidal transformer construction is the higher cost of windings. Larger power transformers may be wound with wire.

or throughout the whole winding. The potential difference between adjacent turns is usually small. the windings may be arranged in a way to minimise leakage inductance and stray capacitance to improve highfrequency response. Each strand is insulated from the other. since even at low power frequencies non-uniform distribution of current would otherwise exist in high-current windings. High frequency transformers operating in the tens to hundreds of kilohertz will have windings made of Litz wire to minimize the skin effect losses in the conductors. The stranded conductor is also more flexible than a solid conductor of similar size is. on-load tap changer type of switchgear for voltage regulation of distribution circuits. Audio-frequency transformers. used for the distribution of audio to public address loudspeakers. and reduces eddy current losses in the winding itself.used for very heavy currents. This is known as a stacked type or interleaved winding. each portion occupies different relative positions in the complete conductor. and the strands are arranged so that at certain points in the winding. Modulation transformers in AM transmitters are very similar. Tapped transformers are also used as components of amplifiers. . have taps to allow adjustment of impedance to each speaker. (see reference (1) below) For signal transformers. This can be done by splitting up each coil into sections. and those sections placed in layers between the sections of the other winding. This "transposition" equalizes the current flowing in each strand of the conductor. C) Insulation of windings The turns of the windings must be insulated from each other to ensure that the current travels through the entire winding. so that enamel insulation is usually sufficient for small power transformers. A center-tapped transformer is often used in the output stage of an audio power amplifier in a push-pull type circuit. oscillators. and for feedback linearization of amplifier circuits. Large power transformers use multiple-stranded conductors as well. Taps may be connected to an automatic. Windings on both the primary and secondary of power transformers may have external connections (called taps) to intermediate points on the winding to allow adjustment of the voltage ratio.

and as part of the insulation system. By cooling the windings. The shield may be a single layer of metal foil. By impregnating the transformer with epoxy under a vacuum. the transformer casing is completely sealed against moisture ingress. Transformers may also be enclosed by magnetic shields. air spaces within the windings are replaced with epoxy. or a single layer winding between primary and secondary. To ensure that the insulating capability of the transformer oil does not deteriorate. The shield is connected to earth ground. Specific provision must be made for cooling of . the insulation will not break down as easily due to heat. Small signal transformers do not generate significant amounts of heat. insulated where it overlaps to prevent it acting as a shorted turn. Certain power transformers have the windings protected by epoxy resin. This produces transformers suitable for damp or dirty environments. Power transformers rated up to a few kilowatts rely on natural convective air-cooling. Thus the oil serves as both a cooling medium to remove heat from the core and coil. The transformer may also be immersed in transformer oil that provides further insulation. electrostatic shields. or both to prevent outside interference from affecting the operation of the transformer.Supplemental sheet or tape insulation is usually employed between winding layers in larger transformers. an electrostatic shield can be placed between windings to reduce the capacitance between primary and secondary windings. thereby sealing the windings and helping to prevent the possible formation of corona and absorption of dirt or water. D) Shielding Where transformers are intended for minimum electrostatic coupling between primary and secondary circuits. Although the oil is primarily used to cool the transformer. or to prevent the transformer from affecting the operation of nearby devices that may be sensitive to stray fields such as CRTs. but at increased manufacturing cost. it also helps to reduce the formation of corona discharge within high voltage transformers.

Oil-filled transformers undergo prolonged drying processes. Due to the stability and toxic effects of PCB by-products. cost. stable silicone-based oils. or having a high duty cycle can be fan-cooled. Experimental power transformers in the 2 MVA range have been built with superconducting windings which eliminates the copper losses. or fluorinated hydrocarbons may be used where the expense of a fire-resistant liquid offsets additional building cost for a transformer vault. and provides part of the electrical insulation between internal live parts. and professionally decontaminated or scrapped in an environmentally safe manner. Old transformers that still contain PCB should be examined on a weekly basis for leakage. the application of a vacuum. If found to be leaking. using vapor-phase heat transfer. oil pumps and even oil to water heat exchangers. Oil-filled power transformers may be equipped with Buchholz relays which are safety devices that sense gas build-up inside the transformer (a side effect of an electric arc inside the windings). The oil cools the transformer. Large transformers to be used indoors must use a non-flammable liquid. or toxicity compared with mineral oil. Some dry transformers are enclosed in pressurized tanks and are cooled by nitrogen or sulphur hexafluoride gas. The windings of high-power or high-voltage transformers are immersed in transformer oil — a highly refined mineral oil. . Today. This helps prevent electrical breakdown under load. non-toxic. to ensure that the transformer is completely free of water vapor before the cooling oil is introduced. Transformers handling higher power. and its accumulation in the environment. and thus switches off the transformer. Very large or high-power transformers (with capacities of millions of watts) may have cooling fans. it is no longer permitted in new equipment. Other less-flammable fluids such as canola oil may be used but all fire resistant fluids have some drawbacks in performance. that is stable at high temperatures. or combinations of these. polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) was used as it was not a fire hazard in indoor power transformers and it is highly stable. it should be changed out. Formerly. It has to be stable at high temperatures so that a small short or arc will not cause a breakdown or fire. electrical self-heating. The oil-filled tank may have radiators through which the oil circulates by natural convection.high-power transformers.

Larger transformers may have heavy bolted terminals. bus bars or high-voltage insulated bushings made of polymers or porcelain. For example. and a higher (or lower) voltage is produced across another portion of the same winding.but not the core steel loss. While theoretically separate parts of the winding can be used for input and output. a transformer with a tap at the center of the winding can be used with 230 volts across the entire winding. in practice the higher voltage will be connected to the ends of the winding. and the lower voltage from one end to a tap. and brought out to the base of the unit for circuit connections. Transformer types and uses A) Autotransformers An autotransformer has only a single winding. F) Enclosure Small transformers often have no enclosure. Larger units may be enclosed to prevent contact with live parts. A large bushing can be a complex structure since it must provide electrical insulation without letting the transformer leak oil. and 115 volts between one end . and to contain the cooling medium (oil or pressurized gas). AC or pulsed voltage is applied across a portion of the winding. Transformers may have a shield enclosure. as described above. E) Terminals Very small transformers will have wire leads connected directly to the ends of the coils. which is tapped at some point along the winding. These are cooled by liquid nitrogen or helium.

smaller and more efficient than a true (two-winding) transformer of the same rating.and the tap. or reversed to drive 230-volt equipment from 115 volts. B) Constant voltage transformer (ferro-resonance) By arranging particular magnetic properties of a transformer core. one designed for stepping down a voltage will deliver slightly less voltage than required if used to step up. The output voltage of a transformer varies some with varying load resistances. For power transformer applications. and installing a resonant tank circuit (a capacitor and an additional winding). an autotransformer is cheaper. lighter. even with a constant voltage input. which reduces efficiency somewhat. allowing for very small increments of voltage. an autotransformer with a nearcontinuously variable turns ratio can be obtained. the flux in the core is partially cancelled. For voltage ratios not exceeding about 3:1. CVA transformers run hotter than standard power transformers. By exposing part of the winding coils and making the secondary connection through a sliding brush. and a smaller core can be used. among other factors. It can be connected to a 230-volt supply to drive 115-volt equipment. The difference is usually slight enough to allow reversal where the actual voltage level is not critical. for the regulating action is dependent on core saturation. As the same winding is used for input and output. transformer losses mean that autotransformers are not perfectly reversible. a transformer can be arranged to automatically keep the secondary winding voltage constant regardless (within some limits) of any variance in the primary supply without additional circuitry or manual adjustment. where the transformer is seen by the load . The degree of variance is affected by the primary and secondary winding inductances. not the least of which includes winding resistance and the degree of mutual inductance (magnetic coupling) between the primary and secondary windings. In practice.

The measure of how well a power transformer maintains constant secondary voltage over a range of load currents is called the transformer's voltage regulation.(ideally) as a constant source of voltage. It can be calculated from the following formula: Characteristic of CVT Physical view Circuit diagram C) Polyphase transformers . it is good to have the secondary voltage vary as little as possible for wide variances in load current.

These devices are used to generate high alternating voltages. until it is limited by some process such as electrical breakdown. the earth connection point is usually the center point of a Y winding. When the primary coil is driven by a periodic source of alternating current. usually the secondary. Examples: Tesla coil Oudin coil (or Oudin resonator. If a winding is connected to earth (grounded). A special purpose polyphase transformer is the zigzag transformer. There are many possible configurations that may involve more or fewer than six windings and various tap connections. The resonant coil. a very high voltage can develop across the secondary. Δ-Y. the ground may be connected to a center tap on one winding (high leg delta) or one phase may be grounded (corner grounded delta). each pulse of current helps to build up an oscillation in the secondary coil. Due to resonance.For three-phase power. such as a square or Sawtooth wave at the resonant frequency. The most common connections are Y-Δ. named after its inventor Paul Oudin) D'Arsonval apparatus Ignition coil or induction coil used in the ignition system of a petrol engine . D) Resonant transformers A resonant transformer operates at the resonant frequency of one or more of its coils and (usually) an external capacitor. The three primary windings are connected together and the three secondary windings are connected together. or all three phases can be connected to a single polyphase transformer. and is connected in series with a capacitor. three separate single-phase transformers can be used. and the current available can be much larger than that from electrostatic machines such as the Van de Graaff generator or Wimshurst machine. If the secondary is a Δ winding. Δ-Δ and Y-Y. A vector group indicates the configuration of the windings and the phase angle difference between them. acts as an inductor.

5. the transformer's secondary is resonated with the cable's capacitance.2. A voltage-regulating transformer uses a resonant winding and allows part of the core to go into saturation on each half-cycle of the alternating current. In the latter case.0. efficiency is low. This effect stabilizes the output of the regulating transformer.0 and B-4. This accuracy is directly related to a number of factors including the following: burden. However.Flyback transformer of a CRT television set or video monitor. E) Instrument transformers i) current transformer A current transformer is a type of "instrument transformer" that is designed to provide a current in its secondary which is accurately proportional to the current flowing in its primary. B-2. This means a CT with . which can be used for equipment that is sensitive to variations of the supply voltage.1. Saturating transformers provide a simple rugged method to stabilize an AC power supply. B-1. Electrical breakdown and insulation testing of high voltage equipment and cables. The burden in a CT metering circuit is essentially the amount of impedance (largely resistive) present. external electromagnetic fields. load. B-0. Other applications of resonant transformers are as coupling between stages of a superheterodyne receiver. rating factor. temperature and physical CT configuration.0. B-0. Typical burden ratings for CTs are B-0. where the selectivity of the receiver is provided by the tuned transformers of the intermediatefrequency amplifiers. due to the hysteresis losses accompanying this type of operation.

The most common source of excess burden in a current measurement circuit is the conductor between the meter and the CT. manufacturers have been moving towards lower nominal primary currents with greater rating factors. Physical CT configuration is another important factor in reliable CT accuracy. Not to mention. A CT usually demonstrates reduced capacity to maintain accuracy with rising ambient temperature. the minimum primary current a CT can accurately measure is "light load." of the CT) of primary current.a burden rating of B-0. It is important to center primary conductors as they pass through CTs to promote the greatest level of CT accuracy. While previous revisions of CTs were on the order of 500:5 with a rating factor of 1. in an electric metering circuit. . Often times. slight inaccuracies may occur. For example.0 times the nominal rating. there are some issues when attempting to apply theory to the real world. This is an 11% increase in effective range for two CTs that would be used at similar services. Recently.2 can tolerate up to 0. a 200:5 CT with a rating factor of 4. This is made possible by the development of more efficient ferrites and their corresponding hysteresis curves. The rating factor of a CT is largely dependent upon ambient temperature. This is a distinct advantage over previous CTs because it increases their range of accuracy. Items that contribute to the burden of a current measurement circuit are switch blocks meters and intermediate conductors. Afterall. the most inaccurate component is the CT." or 10% of the nominal current. Conversely. substation meters are located significant distances from the meter cabinets and the excessive length of small gauge conductor creates a large resistance. the relative cost of a 500:5 CT is significantly greater than that of a 200:5. Most CTs have rating factors for 35 degrees Celsius and 55 degrees Celsius. While all electrical engineers are quite comfortable with Gauss' Law.5 yielding an effective range of 50A to 750A.2Ω of impedance in the metering circuit before its output current is no longer a fixed ratio to the primary current. It is important to be mindful of ambient temperatures and resultant rating factors when CTs are installed inside pad-mounted transformers or poorly ventilated mechanical rooms. Rating factor is a factor by which the nominal full load current of a CT can be multiplied to determine its absolute maximum measurable primary current. When conductors passing through a CT are not centered in the circular (or oval) void. or "full load.0 is most accurate between 20A (light load)and 800A (4.

as this will produce a dangerously high voltage across the open secondary and may permanently affect the accuracy of the transformer. For a three-stacked CT application. Yn. often in the presence of high voltages. ii) Voltage transformers . with five taps being common for multi ratio CTs. 1s2. One type of specially constructed wideband transformer provides a voltage output that is proportional to the measured current. Specially constructed wideband current transformers are also used (usually with an oscilloscope) to measure waveforms of high frequency or pulsed currents within pulsed power systems. The multi ratio CTs are typically used for current matching in current differential protective relaying applications. Unlike CTs used for power circuitry. Often. a 4000:5 CT would provide an output current of 5 amperes when the primary was passing 4000 amperes. The secondary winding can be single ratio or multi ratio. Zn. The CT is typically described by its current ratio from primary to secondary.Current transformers (CTs) are commonly used in metering and protective relaying in the electrical power industry where they facilitate the safe measurement of large currents. multiple CTs will be installed as a "stack" for various uses (for example. protection devices and revenue metering may use separate CTs). Care must be taken that the secondary of a current transformer is not disconnected from its load while current is flowing in the primary. the secondary winding connection points are typically labelled Xn. Common secondaries are 1 or 5 amperes. Typically. Another type (called a Rogowski coil) requires an external integrator in order to provide a voltage output that is proportional to the measured current. 2s2 and so on. Current transformers are used extensively for measuring current and monitoring the operation of the power grid. The current transformer safely isolates measurement and control circuitry from the high voltages typically present on the circuit being measured. Current transformers are often constructed by passing a single primary turn (either an insulated cable or an uninsulated bus bar) through a well-insulated toroidal core wrapped with many turns of wire. wideband CTs are rated in output volts per ampere of primary current. For example. the secondary connection points are labelled as 1s1. 2s1.

2kV) meter packages. Correct identification of terminals and wiring is essential for proper operation of metering and protection relays. They are designed to present negligible load to the supply being measured and to have a precise voltage ratio to accurately step down high voltages so that metering and protective relay equipment can be operated at a lower potential. For new. pulses with fast rise and fall times and a constant amplitude). or rework. The low side (secondary) is usually phase to ground. Medium-sized power versions are used in power-control circuits such as camera flash controllers. X1. Larger power versions are used in the electrical power distribution industry to interface low-voltage control circuitry to the high-voltage gates of power semiconductors.5kV) or generation voltage (13. VTs are typically only installed in primary voltage (typically 12. to match the input ratings of protection relays. Sometimes a second isolated winding (Y1. H2 (sometimes H0 if it is internally grounded) and X1. Small versions called signal types are used in digital logic and telecommunications circuits. and sometimes an X3 tap may be present. often for matching logic drivers to transmission lines. etc.Voltage transformers (VTs) or potential transformers (PTs) are another type of instrument transformer. Y1. The transformer winding high-voltage connection points are typically labelled as H1. modern meters eliminate the need VTs for most secondary service voltages. Typically the secondary of a voltage transformer is rated for 69 or 120 Volts at rated primary voltage. The terminal identifications (H1. X2. Y3) may also be available on the same voltage transformer. Y2. This applies to current transformers as well. While VTs were formerly used for all voltages greater than 240V primary. meter packages. iii) Pulse transformers A pulse transformer is a transformer that is optimised for transmitting rectangular electrical pulses (that is. used for metering and protection in high-voltage circuits. At any instant terminals with the same suffix numeral have the same polarity and phase. The high side (primary) may be connected phase to ground or phase to phase. Special high voltage pulse transformers are also used to generate high power pulses for .) are often referred to as polarity.

the voltage-time integral) is often used to characterise pulse transformers. a pulse transformer needs to have low values of leakage inductance and distributed capacitance. particle accelerators. high insulation resistance and high breakdown voltage are required. A good transient response is necessary to maintain the rectangular pulse shape at the secondary. wound around ferrite or other types of core. v) Baluns Baluns are transformers designed specifically to connect between balanced and unbalanced circuits. a low coupling capacitance (between the primary and secondary) is important to protect the circuitry on the primary side from high-powered transients created by the load. In power-type pulse transformers. iv) RF transformers (transmission line transformers) For radio frequency use. sometimes bifilar or coaxial cable. because a pulse with slow edges would create switching losses in the power semiconductors. or other high energy pulsed power applications. Generally speaking. the larger and more expensive the transformer. These are sometimes made from configurations of transmission line and sometimes bifilar or coaxial .radar. and a high open-circuit inductance. transformers are sometimes made from configurations of transmission line. RF transformers sometimes used a third coil (called a tickler winding) to inject feedback into an earlier (detector) stage in antique regenerative radio receivers. The product of the peak pulse voltage and the duration of the pulse (or more accurately. 1:4 or 1:2) can be achieved with this technique. This style of transformer gives an extremely wide bandwidth but only a limited number of ratios (such as 1:9. For the same reason. To minimise distortion of the pulse shape. The core material increases the inductance dramatically. thereby raising its Q factor. the larger this product. The cores of such transformers help improve performance at the lower frequency end of the band.

Early transistor audio power amplifiers often had output transformers. For good low-frequency response a relatively large iron core is required. bass guitars) to enable them to be connected to a microphone input on the mixing console. but an output transformer is needed to couple the relatively high impedance (up to a few hundred ohms depending upon configuration) of the output valve(s) to the low impedance of a loudspeaker. vii) Speaker transformers . electronic circuits with wide frequency response and low distortion are relatively simple to design. A particularly critical component is the output transformer of an audio power amplifier. (The valves can deliver a low current at a high voltage.) Solid-state power amplifiers may need no output transformer at all. Valve circuits for quality reproduction have long been produced with no other (inter-stage) audio transformers. but they were eliminated as designers discovered how to design amplifiers without them. high power handling increases the required core size. Good high-frequency response requires carefully designed and implemented windings without excessive leakage inductance or stray capacitance.cable and are similar to transmission line transformers in construction and operation. vi) Audio transformers Audio transformers are usually the factor which limit sound quality. the speakers require high current at low voltage. All this makes for an expensive component. Transformers are also used in DI boxes to convert impedance from high-impedance instruments (for example.

viii) Small Signal transformers Moving coil phonograph cartridges produce a very small voltage. Use of a constant-voltage speaker circuit means that there is no need to worry about the impedance presented to the amplifier output (which would clearly be too low if all of the speakers were arranged in parallel and would be too complex a design problem if the speakers were arranged in series-parallel). Tannoy) applications. At the audio amplifier. ix) 'Interstage' and coupling transformers . the volume of each speaker (without the complexity and power loss of an L pad) is a useful feature. Then.. In addition. This application is common in public address (e. allowing the volume at each speaker to be adjusted in a number of discrete steps. low-voltage output of the amplifier to the designed line voltage of the speaker circuit. the ability to adjust. locally. a smaller transformer at each speaker returns the voltage and impedance to ordinary speaker levels.g. The speaker transformers commonly have multiple primary taps. In order for this to be amplified with a reasonable signal-noise ratio. Such circuits are commonly referred to as constant voltage or 70 volt speaker circuits although the audio waveform is obviously a constantly changing voltage. a large audio transformer may be used to stepup the low impedance. a transformer is usually used to convert the voltage to the range of the more common moving-magnet cartridges. The use of higher transmission voltage and impedance means that power lost in the connecting wire is minimized. even with the use of small-gauge conductors (and leads to the term constant voltage as the line voltage doesn't change much as additional speakers are added to the system). speaker transformers allow many individual loudspeakers to be powered from a single audio circuit operated at higher-than normal speaker voltages.In the same way that transformers are used to create high voltage power transmission circuits that minimize transmission losses.

and electronic circuits measure the different amplitudes of the currents in the secondaries. A common use was the video head system as used in VHS and Beta video tape players. Usually they have a single primary and two or more secondaries.A use for interstage transformers is in the case of push-pull amplifiers where an inverted signal is required. .  A transformer-like device is used for position measurement.  Other rotary transformers are precisely constructed in order to measure distances or angles.  Large. Here two secondary windings wired in opposite polarities may be used to drive the output devices.  Sliding transformers can pass power or signals from a stationary mounting to a moving part such as a machine tool head. Uses of transformers  For supplying power from an alternating current power grid to equipment which uses a different voltage. See linear variable differential transformer. specially constructed power transformers are used for electric arc furnaces used in steelmaking.  Small transformers are often used internally to couple different stages of radio receivers and audio amplifiers. or radar antenna. in which a combination of core saturation and the resonance of a tank circuit prevents changes in the primary voltage from appearing on the secondary. See synchro and resolver.  For regulating the secondary output of a constant voltage (or ferro-resonant). These can pass power or radio signals from a stationary mounting to a rotating mechanism.  Rotating transformers are designed so that one winding turns while the other remains stationary.  Electric power transmission over long distances.  Some rotary transformers are used to couple signals between two parts which rotate in relation to each other.

7kHz. for example to match a microphone to an amplifier. . They supply high voltage to the CRTs at the frequency of the horizontal oscillator. In the case of television sets. this is about 15. The tiny cores found in wristwatch backlight power supplies produce audible sound (about 1 kHz). A special type of transformer called a balun is used in radio and audio circuits to convert between balanced linecircuits and unbalanced transmission lines such as antenna downleads.  Balanced-to-unbalanced conversion.  Switching power supply transformers usually operate between 30-1000 kHz. Transformers may be used as external accessories for impedance matching.  Flyback transformers are built using ferrite cores. It may be as high as 75 .120kHz for high-resolution computer monitors.

at significant power levels.S.. Power Transformers Power transformers are used to convert from one voltage to another. Examples: • • You are a Swiss visiting the U. The CRT display tube of your computer monitor requires thousands of volts. and want to operate your 220VAC shaver off of the available 110 VAC. Step-up transformers A "step-up transformer" allows a device that requires a high voltage power supply to operate from a lower voltage source. The transformer takes in the low voltage at a high current and puts out the high voltage at a low current. . Limitations • • • • Transformers alone cannot do the following: Convert DC to AC or vice versa Change the voltage or current of DC Change the AC supply frequency. but must run off of 110 VAC from the wall.A.Types of transformers In general. transformers are used for two purposes: signal matching and power supplies.

usually germanium or silicon. Electrons flow into the N-type material and out of the Pterminal. Positive current flows in the direction of the arrow. Diode can be used for a wide variety of different purposes. The schematic symbol for a semiconductor diode is shown at B. The semiconductor diode is far more common than the tube diode in modern electronic circuits. and P-type material. and the negative terminal is called Cathode. The positive terminal of a • diode is called Anode. The older tube type diodes are much bulkier and less efficient than . Electron movement is contrary to the arrow. under conditions of forward bias (conduction).Diode • A diode is a tube or semiconductor device. and still handle hundreds or even thousands of volta at several amperes. A diode consists of N-type semiconductor material. Semiconductor diode can be very small. intended to pass current in only one direction.

Semiconductor diodes are used for many different purposes in electronics. Diode Bridge A diode bridge or bridge rectifier (occasionally called a Graetz bridge) is an arrangement of four diodes connected in a bridge circuit as shown below. switches. it is known as a bridge rectifier. oscillators. the polarity of the output is constant. Schematic of a diode bridge • The essential feature of this arrangement is that for both polarities of the voltage at the bridge input. The bridge recitifier provides full wave rectification from a two wire AC input (saving the cost of a center tapped transformer) but has two diode drops rather than one reducing efficiency over a center tap based design for the same output voltage. that provides the same polarity of output voltage for any polarity of the input voltage. frequency controllers. for conversion of alternating current (AC) input into direct current (DC) output. mixers. Some of the tube type diodes require a separate power supply for the purpose of heatihg a filament. .the semiconductor diodes. They can be used as amplifiers. and in many other types of circuits. When used in its most common application. voltage regulators.

• When the right hand corner is positive relative to the left hand corner. Since this is true whether the input is AC or DC.Basic operation • When the input connected at the left corner of the diamond is positive with respect to the one connected at the right hand corner. That is. current flows along the upper colored path and returns to the supply via the lower colored path. it permits normal . • In each case. the upper right output remains positive with respect to the lower right one. current flows to the right along the upper colored path to the output. this circuit not only produces DC power when supplied with AC power: it also can provide what is sometimes called "reverse polarity protection". and returns to the input supply via the lower one.

the circuit is called a BRIDGE RECTIFIER. • Prior to availability of integrated electronics. Since about 1950. Let us assume the transformer is working . a single four-terminal component containing the four diodes connected in the bridge configuration became a standard commercial component and is now available with various voltage and current ratings. and the output is taken from the remaining two corners. such a bridge rectifier was always constructed from discrete components. The input to the circuit is applied to the diagonally opposite corners of the network. We have discussed transformers in previous modules in the NEETS series and will not go into their characteristics at this time.functioning when batteries are installed backwards or DC inputpower supply wiring "has its wires crossed" (and protects the circuitry it powers against damage that might occur without this circuit in place). How Bridge Rectifier works When four diodes are connected. One complete cycle of operation will be discussed to help you understand how this circuit works.

through the secondary of the transformer back to point B. The negative potential at point B will forward bias D1 and reverse bias D2. through D3. and back to point A. Since current flows through the load (RL) during both half cycles of the applied voltage. through the secondary of T1. D4 and D2 are reverse biased and will block current flow. up through RL. The positive potential at point A will forward bias D3 and reverse bias D4. In flowing through RL this current develops a voltage corresponding to that shown in waveform (5). The path for current flow is from point B through D1. up through RL. This path is indicated by the broken arrows. this bridge rectifier is a full-wave rectifier. Waveforms (3) and (4) can be observed across D2 and D4. At this time D3 and D1 are forward biased and will allow current flow to pass through them. This path is indicated by the solid arrows. Current flow will now be from point A through D4. . One-half cycle later the polarity across the secondary of the transformer reverses. Waveforms (1) and (2) can be observed across D1 and D3. through D2. forward biasing D2 and D4 and reverse biasing D1 and D3. You should have noted that the current flow through RL is always in the same direction.properly and there is a positive potential at point A and a negative potential at point B.

and especially in the absence of rechargeable batteries that can provide similar low-frequency current capacity. since it permitted the filtering of the 50-60 hertz power supplied to residences. This is especially the case in power-supply filters. The two most popular geometries are axial leads coming from the center of each circular . This was not practical without the small volume and low cost of electrolytic capacitors. This stack is then rolled up. in rectifier output. after it was rectified to power the radio tubes. It was largely responsible for the development of mainspowered radio receivers. making them valuable in relatively high-current and low-frequency electrical circuits.Electrolytic Capacitor An electrolytic capacitor is a type of capacitor typically with a larger capacitance per unit volume than other types. The electrolytic capacitor was invented in 1921 by Julius Edgar Lilienfeld. Construction Aluminium electrolytic capacitors are constructed from two conducting aluminium foils. where they store charge needed to moderate output voltage and current fluctuations. the large value of the capacitance allows them to pass very low frequencies. They are also widely used as coupling capacitors in circuits where AC should be conducted but DC should not. and a paper spacer soaked in electrolyte. one of which is coated with an insulating oxide layer. The foil insulated by the oxide layer is the anode while the liquid electrolyte and the second foil act as cathode. fitted with pin connectors and placed in a cylindrical aluminium casing.

or two radial leads or lugs on one of the circular faces. A constant forward bias is preferable. and if the short circuit current is excessive. the layer of insulating aluminum oxide on the surface of the aluminum plate acts as the dielectric. electrolytic capacitors have a voltage polarity requirement. Polarity In aluminum electrolytic capacitors. but they have higher capacitance per unit volume and lower impedance at high frequencies. Modern capacitors have a safety valve on one circular face to vent the hot gas/liquid. but they will conduct significant current and not act as a very good capacitor. . but ruptures can still be dramatic. and will increase the life of the capacitor. but circuits should be designed so that there is not a constant reverse bias for any significant amount of time.face of the cylinder. The correct polarity is indicated on the packaging by a stripe with minus signs and possibly arrowheads. Without the dielectric material the capacitor will short circuit. and it is the thinness of this layer that provides high capacitance. and generally only usable at low voltage. thus they are popular in miniature applications such as cellular telephones. The aluminum oxide layer can withstand an electric field strength of the order of 109 volts per metre. then the electrolyte will heat up and either leak or cause the capacitor to explode. Both of these are shown in the picture. Most will survive with no reverse DC bias or with only AC voltage. Unlike most capacitors. The combination of high capacitance and high voltage result in high energy density. This is necessary because a reverse-bias voltage will destroy the center layer of dielectric material via electrochemical reduction (see Redox reactions). Electrolytics can withstand a reverse bias for a short period of time. denoting the adjacent terminal that should be more negative than the other. Tantalum capacitors are more expensive than aluminum-based capacitors.

i. Particular care needs to be taken with electrolytic capacitors in that the device should not be reverse-biased. notably gloves and safety glasses. however most of these have corroded away by now.Safety The electrolyte is usually boric acid or sodium borate in aqueous solution together with various sugars or ethylene glycol which are added to retard evaporation. It is important to follow safe working practice and to use appropriate protective equipment. Electrical behavior of electrolytics A common modeling circuit for an electrolytic capacitor has the following schematic: where Rleakage is the leakage resistance. Some very old tantalum electrolytics. Loss power scales quadratically with the ripple current flowing through and . RESR is the equivalent series resistance. Were this to happen the capacitor may self-distruct with spectacular and damaging results.e. LESL the equivalent series inductance (L being the conventional symbol for inductance). contain the more hazardous sulfuric acid. when working with the electrolyte. connected to a circuit where the negative terminal voltage is more positive than the positive terminal voltage. and any areas of the body where skin contact has occurred should be washed in good time. Care should be taken to avoid ingestion of or eye contact with the electrolyte. often called "Wet-slug". RESR must be as small as possible since it determines the loss power when the capacitor is used to smooth voltage. risking significant personal injury.

Variants . 22. Low ESR capacitors are imperative for high efficiencies in power supplies. Many conditions determine a capacitor's value. 15. 3. 2. so microfarad and picofarad are more commonly used. Therefore. In the manufacturing process. Values are generally in microfarads (µF). 47. any practical capacitor value can be achieved. It should be pointed out that this is only a simple model and does not include all the effects associated with real electrolytic capacitors. 4. Capacitance The capacitance value of any capacitor is a measure of the amount of electric charge stored per unit of potential difference between the plates. The basic unit of capacitance is a farad. values ranging from 0. 68. typically as 2000 hours at 105 degrees Celsius (which is the highest working temperature). meaning that the manufacturer guarantees that the actual value of the capacitor lies within 20 % of its labeled value.8 by a power of ten. 220. electrolytic capacitors are made to conform to a set of preferred numbers. 33. 1.7 or 6. Most electrolytic capacitors have a tolerance range of 20 %. A standardized set of capacitor base numbers was devised so that the value of any modern electrolytic capacitor could be derived from multiplying one of the modern conventional base numbers 1. design life is most often rated in hours at a set temperature. Design life doubles for each 10 degrees lower. 100. and so on. Using this method. reaching 15 years at 45 degrees. such as the thickness of the dielectric and the plate area.5. within the tolerance. By multiplying these base numbers by a power of ten. which is suitable for most applications.2.0. it is common to find capacitors with values of 10.3. Since the electrolytes evaporate. however this unit is often too large for practical uses.linearly with RESR. Selection of the preferred series ensures that any capacitor can be sold as a standard value.1 to 4700 are common in most applications. For example.

An electrolytic capacitors come in several types: Aluminum electrolytic capacitor: compact but lossy. the dielectric in electrolytic capacitors depends on the formation and maintenance of a microscopic metal oxide layer.000. this type of specification is acceptable. it is quite common to see an electrolytic capacitor specified as having a "guaranteed minimum value" and no upper bound on its value. the liquid can dry out. In addition.000 µF with working voltages up to several hundred volts DC. They contain corrosive liquid and can burst if the device is connected backwards.Unlike capacitors that use a bulk dielectric made from an intrinsically insulating material. Electrolytic capacitance values are not as tightly-specified as with bulk dielectric capacitors. Tantalum: . this very thin dielectric allows for much more capacitance in the same unit volume. Compared to bulk dielectric capacitors. The dielectric is a thin layer of aluminum oxide. electrolytic capacitors generally use an internal wet chemistry and they will eventually fail as the water within the capacitor evaporates. Over a long time. causing the capacitor to fail. Bipolar electrolytics contain two capacitors connected in series opposition and are used for coupling AC signals. causing the capacitor to fail. these are available in the range of <1 µF to 1. but maintaining the integrity of the dielectric usually requires the steady application of the correct polarity of direct current else the oxide layer will break down and rupture. Especially with aluminum electrolytics. For most purposes (such as power supply filtering and signal coupling).

the Korean company NessCap offers units up to 5000 farads (5 kF) at 2.7 V. The electrodes are made of activated carbon. Tantalum capacitors are also polarized because of their dissimilar electrodes. these have a lower energy density and are more accurate than aluminum electrolytics. As the energy stored is inversely proportional to the thickness of the dielectric. Compared to aluminum electrolytics. RuO2. Electrolytic double-layer capacitors Electrolytic double-layer capacitors (EDLCs). A development of this type replaces the manganese dioxide with a conductive plastic polymer (polypyrrole) that reduces internal resistance and eliminates a selfignition failure. further increasing the capacitor's energy density. eg. the same . The cathode electrode is formed of sintered tantalum grains.1 F – 10 F range) are frequently used instead of (or in addition to) batteries to supply standby power to memory circuits and clocks. The electrodes for EDLCS could also be made by transition metal oxides. Electrodes made by metal oxides store the charges by two mechanism: double layer effect. Smaller units (in the 0. which has a high surface area per unit volume. unlike aluminum electrolytics. as the dielectric. For example. IrO2. However. these capacitors have an extremely high energy density. also known as supercapacitors or ultracapacitors. The anode electrode is formed of a chemically deposited semi-conductive layer of manganese dioxide. rather than a manufactured sheet of material. etc.compact. Individual EDLCs can have capacitances of hundreds or even thousands of farads. NiO. tantalum capacitors have very stable capacitance and little DC leakage. and very low impedance at low frequencies. which is then connected to an external wire lead. useful for electric vehicles and solar energy applications. have very high capacitance values but low voltage ratings. they are intolerant of voltage spikes and are destroyed (often exploding violently) if connected backwards or exposed to spikes above their voltage rating. with the dielectric electrochemically formed as a thin layer of oxide. low-voltage devices up to about 100 µF. They use a molecule-thin layer of electrolyte. The thin layer of oxide and high surface area of the porous sintered material gives this type a very high capacitance per unit volume.

This is achieved by using a sensitive ammeter or microammeter in series with a high resistance. using carbon aerogel to attain immense electrode surface area.g. EDLCs can be used as replacements for batteries in applications where a high discharge current is required. However. Potentiometer . the galvanometer's indicator rotates and compresses a small spring. The angular rotation is proportional to the current that is flowing through the coil. capacitor voltage drops faster than battery voltage during discharge. therefore. Volt Meter A voltmeter is an instrument used for measuring the potential difference between two points in an electric circuit. Aerogel capacitors Aerogel capacitors. One of the design objectives of the instrument is to disturb the circuit as little as possible and hence the instrument should draw a minimum of electric current to operate. and pseudocapacitance. a voltmeter can be seen as a very high resistance ammeter. When an electrical current is applied. up to thousands of farads. unlike conventional batteries which last for only a few hundred or thousand recharge cycles. can attain huge values. It employs a small coil of fine wire suspended in a strong magnetic field. which can store more energy than double layer effects. The voltage can be measured by allowing it to pass a current through a resistance. For use as a voltmeter. a series resistance is added so that the angular rotation becomes proportional to the applied voltage. The moving coil galvanometer is one example of this type of voltmeter. They can also be recharged hundreds of thousands of times. in electric vehicles.with active carbon. so a DC to DC converter may be used to maintain voltage and to make more of the energy stored in the capacitor usable. e.

for instance) and a "wiper" that can short-circuit any portion of the material. as discussed at the top of this article. Then the wiper position is adjusted to change the potentiometer's effective resistance until a balance is obtained and no current is detected. Now replace the unknown voltage supply with the known voltage supply and repeat the procedure. One may also measure voltage using a potentiometer in the nullbalance method. and transformed ammeters. There are many implementations for null detectors. VU meter A VU meter is often included in analog audio equipment to display a signal level in volume units. which is a length of uniform resistance material (wire or carbon film. divided by the recorded length of wire corresponding to the reference voltage. The response of a VU meter (black line) compared to instantaneous input level (grey area) of a drum beat. The unknown voltage is then given by the product of the known voltage and the recorded used length of wire corresponding to the unknown voltage. At this time. note Thevenin's theorem and Norton's theorem. while the known voltage source is connected to an end terminal of the potentiometer. The potentiometer's resistance is changed at the wiper until the null detector shows zero voltage between the two circuits. if our potentiometer were a length of very long wire and our wiper were some sort of metal wand in contact with that wire. For more on circuit transformations.A voltmeter may also be realized using a potentiometer. For example. record the potentiometer's wiper position. record the length of wire between the wiper and the end of the wiper that is in our circuit. which is in turn connected to the potentiometer's wiper. simple audio circuits that click to indicate voltage difference. thereby changing effective resistance between the wiper and an end terminal of the potentiometer. The unknown voltage source may be connected to a current detector. including nanovolt-sensitive integrated circuits. Level is in dB and time is in seconds .

the latest digital version of a professional reel-to-reel recorder dating from the 1960s still uses analog meters. for measuring and standardizing the levels of telephone lines. The Nagra V. Most users ignore this and call it a VU meter.5-1942. The rise and fall times of the meter are both 300 milliseconds. the meter will take 300 milliseconds to reach the 0 on the scale. and later arrays of them replaced mechanical meters. When LEDs were developed. The first high fidelity deck. It behaves as a full-wave averaging instrument. The needles would be "pegged" when they hit the physical pegs which stopped the maximum motion of the needle. Computer recording software often emulates an array of LEDs. The behaviour of VU meters is defined in ANSI C16. but this was never adopted by any other design. 0 VU was defined: The reading of the volume indicator shall be 0 vu when it is connected to a 600-ohm resistance in which is flowing one milliwatt of sine-wave power at 1000 cycles per second The typical VU scale is from −20 to +3. and later LCD and fluorescent displays which are not subject to Newton's laws of motion to limit reaction time. they were often used to indicate peak levels. . or either channel. and IEC 60268-17. The instrument used to measure VU is called the volume indicator (VI) instrument. averaging out peaks and troughs of short duration to reflect the perceived loudness of the material. which could be switched to average both channels. meaning that if a constant sine wave of amplitude 0 VU is applied suddenly. It was originally developed in 1939 by the combined effort of Bell Labs and broadcasters CBS and NBC. the Advent used only one meter.It is intentionally a "slow" measurement. British Standard BS 6840. How to use a VU meter Tape and cassette decks typically used physical meters similar to needles on a compass. and is not optimal for measuring peak levels.

usually not defeatable in inexpensive recorders. which is typically required for recording live music rather than compressed television or radio broadcasts. Systems tailored for voice often incorporate automatic level control. the sound quality and frequency response is typically poorer at high recording levels. recording levels should be set so that they do not exceed the red area beyond 0 VU or only rarely. . VCR's only rarely included VU meters when they provided a manual level control.Peak levels may be displayed in addition to the current level. As a rule. If the level is set too low. noise levels will be high. If set too high. and clipping effects can be especially severe for a digital recording system.

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