How to Select the Best AC-DC Converters?

A majority of electrical equipment like consumer appliances, industrial utilities, handheld tools, and more, necessitate a steady power supply. However, it is important to note that these types of equipment typically do not run on electricity that is directly connected to them. Instead, electricity is routed via alternating current (AC) that is changed into direct current (DC). AC-DC converters are electrical circuits that change this AC input into DC output.

AC-DC converters are often utilized in electronic applications with power inputs of 50 Hz or 60 Hz that require a switch to DC output. This change consists of three simple processes, the first necessitates the use of rectifiers to turn AC input into DC output, the second consists of employing regulators to adjust voltage levels, and the third includes the use of reservoir capacitors to smooth out any pulsating DC current.

While this may seem like a straightforward process, some builders still find it challenging to select the right power supply for their operations. If the quality of your power supply is low, your system may not work properly or may suffer in the long run. If the amount of power supply is insufficient because you are not sure how much power your system needs, you could end up spending more than necessary. Therefore, choosing the right power converter will render the best possible performance and contribute to an extended service life.

There are two types of AC-DC converters. The first are linear devices which are relatively simple and inexpensive, though quite large and inefficient. Linear devices process excess power as heat, which may be a problem for temperature-sensitive applications.

The second are switching devices which are a more complex version of AC-DC converters that utilize a switched-mode power supply (SMPS). Moreover, switching regulators shift very quickly between ON and OFF states, reducing energy loss in the process. Although complicated, they are also incredibly efficient, compact, and light in design. Lastly, switching devices often produce electrical noise problems.

When selecting the right AC-DC converter for your applications, there are a few parameters to consider. A suitable power supply has the capacity to provide the correct amount of wattage to all the connected electronic components simultaneously. More than that, they should feature a safety protection function, ensuring that the power supply remains protected in the case of voltage spikes, short circuiting, and increased temperatures.

Solutions for excess heat in AC-DC converter applications include natural air cooling and forced air cooling. Natural air cooling is the most cost effective method of dissipating heat. Heat has the ability to dissipate to the ambient air through the converter shell, a small crevice between the converter and the PCB. Forced air cooling involves the installation of a fan as the primary means of heat dissipation. The fan can be positioned to provide airflow in a horizontal or vertical direction. To ensure that the fan is tightly affixed to the converter shell, the assembly can be coated with a layer of thermal grease for an added resistant seal.

If you find yourself in need of AC-DC converters, capacitors, transistors, switches, or other related components, rely on Industrial Automation Parts. Industrial Automation Parts is a premier online distributor of aircraft parts and other items fit for industrial applications, those  of which are subjected to a series of quality assurance measures, tests, verifications, and assessments. Peruse our ever-expanding catalogs and utilize our optimized search engine, filters, and Instant RFQ service. Our RFQ service includes a form which you can fill out with as much information as you can about parts you are interested in. Whether we have them in stock or not, we always invite customers to complete a form for their comparisons. Kickoff the procurement process today and see how Industrial Automation Parts can serve as your strategic sourcing partner.


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