Step Up Transformer as the name indicates, is an equipment that steps-up or controls the output voltage which is much greater than its input voltage while keeping the electricity flow stable without any fluctuation. They are mainly found in the power generating stations and power transmitted applications. In this post you will learn about the Step Up Transformer in detail along with its working, construction, applications, advantages and disadvantages.
What is Step Up Transformer
In a Step Up Transformer, there are more turns on the secondary coil compared to the primary coils. The current which flows across the Primary coil is much higher compared to secondary coil. It basically converts low voltage, high-current to high voltage-low current i.e. the voltage has been Stepped Up. Hence the name, Step Up Transformer.
Fig. 1 – Introduction to Step Up Transformer
Károly Zipernowsky, Ottó Bláthy and Miksa Déri were the three engineers who invented Step Down Transformer in 1884, which paved the way for the design of Step Up Transformer.
Fig. 2 – Engineers who Invented Step Up Transformer
Construction of Step Up Transformers
Construction of Step Up Transformers include the building up of the winding, the enclosures and other accessories along with the Core of the Transformer. Below is the detailed procedure of building of the Step Up Transformer.
- Step Up Transformer Core
Step Up Transformer Core
- To build the core of the Transformer, a high penetrable material is used. To form the Core, thin Silicon Steel is assembled and tightly clamped which is laminated. The preamble material which is used in forming of the core is designed to let the magnetic flux to flow with less loss.
- The characteristic of the Core restricts the magnetic field lines in the air which in turn increases the efficiency of the Transformer.
- Less coercive materials are preferred such as Silicon Steel to build the Core. If the core is built with other Ferro-magnetic materials it might result in Hysteresis Loss and Eddy current Loss.
The Winding(s) help transfer the currents which are wound to the Transformers. The winding(s) are designed to cool the transformers and withstand the operational and test conditions.
The wire on the Primary winding is thick with less number of turns. While the wire on the Secondary winding is thinner and has large number of turns. This is mainly designed in such a way that the primary winding can carry low power voltage compared to the secondary winding which carry higher voltage power.
The material used in the winding is Copper and Aluminium. Copper being the expensive material increases the life of Step Up Transformer when compared to Aluminium which is less expensive.
Lamination of Core reduces Eddy Currents. They are of many types. Most common Laminations are E-E Type and E-I Type to which Primary and Secondary winding is fixed and they are stacked to minimize the air gaps as shown in the Fig. 3 (a) and (b). Primary and Secondary Winding on the Laminated Core is shown in the Fig. 3 (c)
Fig. 3 – (a) E-I Core (b) E-E Core (c) Winding on Laminated Core
How Does Step Up Transformer Work
A Step Up Transformer has been explained in a more detailed manner with a schematic diagram as shown in Fig. 4. Here V1 and V2 are the input and output Voltages respectively. T1 and T2 are the Turns on the Primary and the Secondary windings. Primary winding is the input winding to a Transformer and the Secondary winding is the output winding to a Transformer. If there are more turns of wire on the Secondary than on the Primary, the output voltage will be higher than the input voltage.
Fig. 4 – Schematic Diagram of Step Up Transformer
As the current flowing in a Transformer is Alternating Current, it flows in one direction, stops, then reverses and flows in the other direction. The flow of electricity creates a magnetic field around the wire or winding. The north and south poles of the magnetic field gets reversed when the flow of current reverses.
The magnetic field induces voltage into the wire. Similarly voltage will be induced in the second coil when it is placed in a moving magnetic field. This phenomenon is called as Mutual Induction. Hence we can conclude that, Alternating current in Primary winding produces a moving magnetic field which induces voltage in Secondary winding.
The relationship between the voltage and the number of Turns in each coil is given by the equation:
Applications of Step Up Transformer
Applications of Step Up Transformers include:
- Step Up transformers are found in the electronic devices such as Inverters and Stabilizers where in the Transformers help in stabilizing the low voltage to the higher voltage.
- It is also used in the Electrical Distribution of Power
Advantages of Step Up Transformers
Step Up Transformers are the need for the hour in most of the commercial and residential places. The advantages are mentioned below.
The Step Up transformers are the ones which transmit the electricity at lower prices for a longer distance. The voltage of the currents is increased which has to be transmitted whereby the resistance is reduced on the line. This helps in decreasing the losses along the way and make efficient use of the power supplied across.
Step Up transformers has the capability and the capacity to work nonstop without any breaks unlike most of the electrical instruments. This creates a huge advantage which helps in the power distribution system.
Apart from being a system to work without any break, Step Up Transformers also is a low maintenance device. The Step Up Transformer requires only a minimal maintenance such as the oil check, replacement or repair of damaged pieces etc.
Once installed, the Transformer is fast to start up process without any delays or time consuming procedure.
As the technologies have been upgraded along the years, the efficiency level of the Step Up Transformer has also increased. There is less wastage along the lines hence keeping the efficiency level above 95%.
Disadvantages of Step Up Transformers
As previously stated, there is no 100% efficiency level. Hence there are some disadvantages along the way of Step Up Transformers.
As the Step Up Transformer continuously performs its task without any break, it needs a cooling system. Since the Step Up Transformer cannot be shut down to cool, there has to be a provision to attach a round the clock cooling system to the Transformers.
Huge in Size
As the voltage capacity increases bigger the transformer size which will also include a bigger cooling system. This creates a bulky and huge Transformer occupying a larger space.
Works for AC (Alternate Current)
The Transformers are used only for stepping up AC voltages or the Alternating Currents. They do not work on the DC or the Direct Current. The limitation are only for the applications related to the AC operations.