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AC-DC Power Supplies

Written by Al Mahmud Al Mamun

Convert Power AC to DC

An AC-DC power supply obtains electric power in AC from a grid-based power source and converts it into DC with a different current, voltage, and frequency. AC-DC power supplies deliver the right power to embedded systems and electronic devices.

  • What’s happening in AC-DC power supplies?

  • ASB75 series from XP Power

  • VGS-100W series from CUI

  • CALEX’s 600W IHC

  • MEAN WELL’s UHP-2500 series

  • XL750 Series from N2Power

  • RECOM’s RACM40-K

  • APA107AP 65W USB-C Charger from Targus

  • TIB-EX series from TRACO POWER

  • TAAM700 series from TT Electronics

An AC-DC power supply is used for converting the alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC), which is required to power most electronic devices. AC changes its direction periodically and magnitude continuously, and AC power’s voltage and frequencies differ between regions. On the other hand, DC flows in the same direction. A commonly used source of DC power is a battery cell.

The conversion process from AC to DC is simple. The process begins with stepping down the voltage level by using a step-down transformer. Then convert AC to DC by using a rectifier that just keeps the current in a single direction, and we get pulsating DC that changes value but never changes direction. A smoothing capacitor converts the pulsating DC to pure DC, and finally regulates the voltage by a voltage regulator. Generally, AC-DC Power Supplies are two types—regulated and unregulated. Regulated power supplies can be Switching-regulated or Linear-regulated, and unregulated power supplies are the basic types of power supplies with an AC input and an unregulated output.

Embedded systems and electronic devices need a specific amount of processing power, which is impossible using AC. So we need DC, the embedded systems or devices can be powered directly using AC-DC power supplies. The AC-DC power supplies are necessary to provide power to embedded systems and electronic devices such as smart phones, computers, and other smart devices. Mobile phone chargers and laptop adapters are the most commonly used AC-DC power supplies.

Nowadays, we need several types and ranges of AC-DC power supplies for many different purposes and applications, such as Robotics, Electric Vehicles, and Industrial embedded systems. We need different ranges of AC-DC power supplies for home, industrial, transportation, medical, and so on. Many reputable companies are providing AC-DC power supplies of many different types with high qualities that can be used for several fields and applications.

FIGURE 1
Embedded systems and electronic devices need a specific amount of processing power, which is impossible using AC, so we need AC-DC power supplies.

PUBLISHED IN CIRCUIT CELLAR MAGAZINE • JUNE 2022 #383 – Get a PDF of the issue


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Editor-in-Chief (Former) at | + posts

Al Mahmud Al Mamun Former (March 2022-July 2022) Editor-in-Chief — Editor-in-Chief Circuit Cellar magazine. With a background in engineering, research, and publishing and a master’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering. His passions include Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Smart technologies.

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AC-DC Power Supplies

by Al Mahmud Al Mamun time to read: 2 min