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CHAPTER 2:

DC CONVERTERS
At

the end of the lesson, students


should be able to :
1. Give definitions of DC converters
2. Analyze controlled and
uncontrolled circuit of a rectifier
3. Explain the principle operation of a
rectifier
4. Analyze chopper circuit

2.1 Introduction and Definitions of


DC converters
An

electronic circuit which converts one


direct-current voltage into another,
consisting of an inverter followed by a
step-up or step-down transformer and
rectifier.
It is a class of power converter.
DC to DC converters are important in
portable electronic devices such as
cellular phones and laptop computers,
which are supplied with power from
batteries primarily.
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Electronic

devices often contain


several sub-circuits, each with its own
voltage level requirement different
from that supplied by the battery or
an external supply (sometimes higher
or lower than the supply voltage).
Switched DC to DC converters offer a
method to increase voltage from a
partially lowered battery voltage
thereby saving space instead of using
multiple batteries to accomplish the
same thing.
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2.2 Analyze control and


uncontrolled circuit of a rectifier
A

DC/DC converter is a device that takes an


input DC voltage and converts it into a
different output voltage.
There are two categories of regulating
DC/DC converters: a linear
regulator/controller and a switching
converter/ controller.
A linear regulator or controller can only
step down a higher input voltage to a lower
output voltage. Its output current equals its
input current plus its biasing or ground
current.
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Switch-based

regulators move energy


from input to output in discrete
packets via one bipolar or FET switch
and diode (or another bipolar or FET
switch).
An inductor or capacitor is used as the
energy storage element that transfers
energy from the input to the output of
the power supply circuit.
Thus, the output and input currents
are not equal and efficiencies are
much higher than in a regulator.
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2.2.1 The principle operation of a


rectifier
Rectification

Rectification is the process of changing


alternating current to direct current. When
a semiconductor rectifier, such as a
junction diode, is connected to an ac
voltage source, it is alternately biased
forward and reverse, in step with the ac
voltage, as shown in Figure 2.1

Figure 2.1: Rectification Process


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2.2.2 Analyze voltage and current


waveform in the circuit with load
a. Resistive load
1. Half-wave Rectifier
Figure 2.2: Half-wave rectifier circuit and signal

In

Figure 2.2 a diode is placed in series with


a source of ac power and a load resistor.
This is called a half-wave rectifier circuit.
The transformer provides the ac input to
the circuit.
The diode provides the rectification of the
ac.
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The

load resistor serves two purposes:


(1) It limits the amount of current flow in
the circuit to a safe level, and (2) it
develops an output signal due to the
current flow through it.

Figure 2.3: Output of half-wave rectifier circuit

Assume,

in Figure 2.3, that the top of


the transformer secondary is positive
and the bottom negative.
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With

this polarity, the diode is forward


biased, resistance of the diode is very
low, and current flows through the
circuit in the direction of the arrows.
The output (voltage drop) across the
load resistor follows the wave shape of
the positive half of the ac input.
When the ac input goes in a negative
direction, the top of the transformer
secondary becomes negative and the
diode becomes reverse biased.

With

reverse bias applied to the diode,


the resistance of the diode becomes
very great, and current flow through
the diode and load resistor becomes
zero.
(Remember that a very small current
will flow through the diode.) The
output, taken across the load resistor,
will be zero. If the position of the diode
were reversed, the output would be
negative pulses.

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Half Wave Rectifier


Waveforms

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The

dc or average Output voltage

The

dc output current for


resistive load

The

rms output current and


voltage
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The

average power absorbed by


the resistor

Efficiency

where,
Pdc = V .Idc
dc

and Pac = Vrms . Irms


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Example 1
For

the half-wave rectifier with


R load, the power supply is a
sinusoidal voltage of 120V rms at
a frequency of 60 Hz. The load
resistor is 5 ohm.
Determine
a) the average load current and
b) the average power absorbed by
the load.
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Example 2
Given a half-wave rectifier with R
load, with peak supply voltage of
120V and R = 5 ohm. Determine
the average or dc output voltage,
the dc output current,
the rms output voltage, and
the rms output current.

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In a half wave rectifier, a half cycle of


power is produced across the load
resistor for each full cycle of input
power.
2.
Full-wave rectifier
To increase the output power, a full
wave
rectifier
can converts
be used. the whole of
A
full-wave
rectifier
the input waveform to one of constant
polarity (positive or negative) at its output.
Full-wave rectification converts both
polarities of the input waveform to DC
(direct current), and yields a higher mean
output voltage.
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i. Full wave rectifier waveform


(Center
Tap)

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Figure 2.5: Full-wave rectifier using a center tap transformer


and 2 diodes.

Figure

above shows a full-wave rectifier,


which is, in effect, two half-wave rectifiers
combined into one circuit.
In this circuit a load resistor is used to limit
current flow and develop an output voltage,
two diodes to provide rectification, and a
transformer to provide an ac input to the
circuit.

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The

transformer, used in full-wave rectifier


circuits, must be center-tapped to complete the
path for current flow through the load resistor.
Assuming the polarities on the transformer is
the positive half cycle , diode D1 will be forward
biased and current will flow from ground
through the load resistor, through diode D1, to
the top of the transformer.
When the ac input changes direction, the
transformer secondary will assume an opposite
polarity. Diode D2 is now forward biased and
current will flow in the opposite direction, from
ground through the load resistor, through diode
D2, to the bottom half of the transformer.
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When

one diode is forward biased, the other is


reverse biased. No matter which diode is
forward biased, current will flow through the
load resistor in the same direction; so the
output will be a series of pulses of the same
polarity. By reversing both diodes, the output
polarity will be reversed.
This will give full wave rectification. Even after
you've rectified the wave, it's still wavvy. So
then you have to filter it to get it nice and
smooth like the DC current you might get out
of a battery.

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Voltage and
current

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ii. Full-wave Bridge Rectifier


Another,

more popular full-wave rectifier


design exists, and it is built around a fourdiode bridge configuration. This design is
called a full-wave bridge.
The bridge rectifier differs from the full-wave
rectifier in that a bridge rectifier does not
require a center tapped transformer, but
does require two additional diodes.

Figure 2.6: Full-wave bridge rectifier.

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Current

directions for the full-wave bridge


rectifier circuit are as shown in Figure 2.7 for
positive half-cycle and Figure 2.8 for negative
half-cycles of the AC source waveform.

Figure 2.7: Electron flow for positive half-cycles

Figure 2.8: Electron flow for negative half-cycles.

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Note

that regardless of the polarity of the input,


the current flows in the same direction through
the load.
That is, the negative half-cycle of source is a
positive half-cycle at the load.
The current flow is through two diodes in series
for both polarities.
Thus, two diode drops of the source voltage are
lost (0.72=1.4 V for Si) in the diodes.
This is a disadvantage compared with a fullwave center-tap design. This disadvantage is
only a problem in very low voltage power
supplies.

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Full wave rectifier waveforms


(Bridge)

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Bridge Waveforms

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For

both the bridge and centertapped transformer rectifiers, the dc


or average
output current is:

The

dc output current for the resistive


load is

The

rms output voltage and current

are
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Example
Given a centre-tapped rectifier in
Figure 2.4, with peak supply
voltage of 120V and R = 5 ohm.
Determine
the average or dc output voltage,
the dc output current,
the rms output voltage, and
the rms output current.
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Example
Draw the equivalent circuit
diagram for a single-phase fullwave bridge rectifier, the source
voltage, the output voltage and
the voltages across all the diodes.

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b.
Inductive
load
The circuit arrangement of single phase half
rectifier is shown
below with highly
i.wave
Without
freewheeling
inductive load.
diode
During positive half cycle, diode is forward
biased and the load is connected to the input
supply.
Due to the inductive load , diode will continue
conduct beyond t = , even though the input
voltage is already negative.

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Voltage and Current Waveforms


for Rectifier with R-L load

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ii. With freewheeling diode


A

freewheeling diode sometimes called a snubber


diode, flyback diode , suppressor diode or catch
diode.
This diode used to eliminate flyback, which is the
sudden voltage spike seen across an inductive load
when its supply voltage is suddenly reduced or
removed.
These diodes are connected in reverse direction in
parallel with inductive loads.
These diodes helps in providing a smooth current to
the load and also eliminates the negative voltage
across the load.

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Half wave rectifier with Free-wheeling


Diode

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Rectifier circuit with inductive load


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Current

is flowing "down" from the positive


terminal of the voltage source to its negative
terminal, through the inductor.
When the switch is opened (Figure 2), the
inductor will attempt to resist the sudden drop
of current by using its stored magnetic field
energy to create its own voltage.
An extremely large negative potential is
created where there once was positive
potential, and a positive potential is created
where there was once negative potential.
The switch, however, remains at the voltage of
the power supply, but it is still in contact with
the inductor pulling down a negative voltage.

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Since

no connection is physically made to


allow current to continue to flow (due to the
switch being open), the large potential
difference can cause electrons to "arc" across
the air-gap of the open switch (or junction of a
transistor). This is undesirable for the reasons
mentioned above and must be prevented.
A flyback diode solves this starvation-arc
problem by allowing the inductor to draw
current from itself (thus, "flyback") in a
continuous loop until the energy is dissipated
through losses in the wire and across the diode
(Figure 3).
When the switch is closed the diode is reversebiased against the power supply and doesn't
exist in the circuit for practical purposes.
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However,

when the switch is opened, the


diode becomes forward-biased relative to the
inductor (instead of the power supply as
before), allowing it to conduct current in a
circular loop from the positive potential at
the bottom of the inductor to the negative
potential at the top (assuming the power
supply was supplying positive voltage at the
top of the inductor prior to the switch being
opened).
The voltage across the inductor will merely
be a function of the forward voltage drop of
the flyback diode. Total time for dissipation
can vary, but it will usually last for a few
milliseconds.
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Controlled Rectifier
To

obtain controlled output


voltage , phase controlled
thyristor are used instead of
diodes.
The output voltage of thyristor
rectifier is varied by controlling
the delay or firing angle of
thyristor.

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Single Phase Fully Control


Half Wave Rectifier
Resistive Load

Fig. above, shows the circuit diagram of


a single phase fully controlled half wave
rectifier supplying a purely resistive
load.
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At

t = 0 when the input supply voltage


becomes positive the thyristor T becomes
forward biased. However, unlike a diode, it
does not turn ON till a gate pulse is
applied at t = .
During the period 0 < t , the thyristor
blocks the supply voltage and the load
voltage remains zero. Consequently, no
load current flows during this interval.
As soon as a gate pulse is applied to the
thyristor at t = it turns ON. The
voltage across the thyristor collapses to
almost zero and the full supply voltage
appears across the load.
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From

this point onwards the load voltage


follows the supply voltage. The load being
purely resistive, so the load current io is
proportional to the load voltage.
At t = as the supply voltage passes
through the negative going zero crossing
the load voltage and hence the load
current becomes zero and tries to reverse
direction. In the process the thyristor
undergoes reverse recovery and starts
blocking the negative supply voltage.
Therefore, the load voltage and the load
current remains clamped at zero till the
thyristor is fired again at t = 2 + .
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Single Phase Fully Control


Half Wave Rectifier (Resistive
Load) Waveforms

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Rectification

efficiency :

..
Form

Factor:

Ripple

Factor:

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Single Phase Fully Control


Half Wave Rectifier RL Load
Fig

below shows the circuit diagram of


a single phase fully controlled half
wave rectifier supplying a resistive
inductive load.

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As

in the case of a resistive load, the


thyristor T becomes forward biased
when the supply voltage becomes
positive at t = 0. However, it does not
start conduction until a gate pulse is
applied at t = . As the thyristor turns
ON at t = the input voltage appears
across the load and the load current
starts building up.
However, unlike a resistive load, the
load current does not become zero at t
= , instead it continues to flow through
the thyristor and the negative supply
voltage appears across the load forcing
the load current to decrease.
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Finally,

at t = ( > ) the load


current becomes zero and the
thyristor undergoes reverse recovery.
From this point onwards the thyristor
starts blocking the supply voltage and
the load voltage remains zero until the
thyristor is turned ON again in the
next cycle.

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Single Phase Fully Control Half


Wave Rectifier (RL Load)
-Waveforms

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Example 3
Analyze a single phase half wave
controlled rectifier with R load to
produce an average voltage of 40
volt across 100 ohm load resistor
from 120 Vrms, 60 Hz Ac source.
Determine the power absorbed by
the resistor.

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Solution

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Single Phase Fully Control


Full Wave Rectifier R Load

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Example 4 (KIV)
A half wave controlled rectifier
connected to 150 V, 60 Hz source is
supplying a resistive load of 10 ohm. If
the delay angle = 30 deg, solve for
the ;
i.Maximum load current
ii.RMS load current
iii.Power supplied to the load
iv.Ripple frequency
v.Power factor
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