Power lines carry electricity from plants directly to our homes. Some power lines can be rated between 300,000 and 750,000 volts. However, the voltages used by appliances in our homes are thousands of times lower—typically only 110 to 250 volts. You would explode if you tried to run a toaster or a television from an electricity pole! Don’t try it; the electricity from overhead lines is almost certain to kill you. There must be a way to reduce the high-voltage electricity produced by power plants into the lower voltage used in factories, offices, and homes. Transformers are the equipment that does this while generating electromagnetic energy. Take a closer look at the transformer in more detail!

What is the Working of a Transformer?

Transformers are based on an extremely simple fact about electricity. When a fluctuating current of electricity flows through a cable, it creates a magnetic flux (a pattern invisible of magnetism). The magnetic field strength (also known as magnetic flux density in technical terms) is directly proportional to the current size. The stronger the magnetic field, the larger the electric current.

There’s also another fascinating fact about electricity. A magnetic field that fluctuates around a wire generates an electrical current. If we place a second coil next to the original and send an electric current fluctuating into the first coil, we will get an electric current on the second wire. The primary current is the one in the first wire. The secondary current is the one in the second. We’ve passed an electric current from one coil to another through a space between the wires. It is called electromagnetic induction because the first coil “induces” (or causes) a second coil. By wrapping the coils around an iron rod (also called a core), we can increase electrical energy transfer from one coil into the next.

Wire can be wound into coils by simply winding it around in loops, or “turns,” as physicists call them. The second coil’s electric current will be almost the same as that of the first coil if it has the same number of turns. The clever part is that if the second coil has more or fewer turns, the secondary voltage and current can be made larger or smaller.

This trick only works if there is some fluctuation in the electric current. You must use alternating current, which is a constantly reversing type of electricity. Transformers cannot work with direct current, where the current flows continuously in one direction.

This post was written by Justin Tidd, Director at https://beckersmcusa.com/. For nearly a half a century, Becker Mining has been at the forefront of mining transformers Becker/SMC is the industry’s leader in increasingly more sophisticated electrical control systems. Most of the major innovations, design features and specialized electrical components have been developed by Becker/SMC.


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