Power Electronics in Practice

Power Electronics Sign

The field of power electronics is relatively new as a distinct discipline, even though the applications and fundamental methods of a long history. As a special electrical engineering practice, it dates from about the time the SCR was introduced. The term was coined about 1970 to describe the subject as a cohesive discipline. Engineers active in power electronics are typically involved […]

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Power Supplies and DC-DC Conversion

DC Power Supply

Power supply circuits for radios, portable communications, television sets, and son on, are a commonplace although often neglected element of electrical equipment. This application dominates the power electronics industry in many ways, because of the huge quantities involved. Some typical supplies intended as components of larger systems are illustrated below. The earliest power supplies for vacuum tube electronics were rectifiers, […]

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Inversion From DC Voltage

Battery Bank

Two of the fastest growing inverter applications are not as well served by the SCR. These are circuits for independent backup power and circuits for control of AC motors. A variety of modern commercial units are shown below. The most straightforward inverter circuits use timing information from the ac voltage source to control their operation. Backup circuits and motor controllers do […]

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The Early History of Rectifying Devices

Vacuum Tube

In many ways, the search since the 1880s for better rectifier methods has grown into the entire field of power electronics. The basic form of the diode rectifier circuit was discussed in the nineteenth century, and the modern multi-kilowatt rectifiers common today use the same principles. One such example is imaged to the right. What makes the early idea significant […]

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The Need for Electrical Conversion

Battery Charger

In the 1880s, two major inventions determined the course of electric power systems. George Stanley built a practical transformer, and so allowed convenient conversion among various voltage levels for ac. Nikola Tesla invented the polyphase ac system, and with it showed an easy method for converting electrical energy into mechanical energy. The advantages of low-frequency ac were compelling to designers […]

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