16 January, 2007

Alternating Current


Alternating Current :
Electric current that reverses direction periodically, usually many times per second. Electrical energy is ordinarily generated by a public or a private utility organization and provided to a customer, whether industrial or domestic, as alternating current.
One complete period, with current flow first in one direction and then in the other, is called a cycle.Household utility current in most countries is AC with a frequency of 60 hertz (60 complete cycles per second), although in some countries it is 50 Hz.
A waveform is a representation of how alternating current (AC) varies with time. The most familiar AC waveform is the sine wave, which derives its name from the fact that the current or voltage varies with the sine of the elapsed time. Other common AC waveforms are the square wave, the ramp, the sawtooth wave, and the triangular wave. Their general shapes are shown .
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