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how to measure ripple voltages

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by ksr, Aug 4, 2003.

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  1. ksr

    ksr Guest

    I want to know how to measure ripple voltages of rectifiers,voltage regulators
    and battery adapters using a digital or an analog multimeter or by any other method
    Please help.
     
  2. The best way "I think" is to view the ripple voltage is on an oscilloscope
    while the power supply is under operation powering what ever electronic
    device it's met to power . That is the only way to get a real idea of what
    it looks like. If the voltmeter is sensitive enough you can measure it my
    setting it to AC mode and remember your measuring rms and not peak. The
    rectifier just takes the negative components of the voltage waveform and
    makes it positive. So, on the scope you just have a bunch of positive peaks
    instead of positive, negative ,positive, negative etc. Mathematically it
    will look like the absolute value of sin(theta). Then using a smoothing
    capacitor placed in parallel to the rectifier at the + and - sides will
    smooth out the waveform to where it looks like a straight line ( or as a dc
    voltage) then when you apply the load you will get a ripple (a dc component
    and an ac component to your waveform). If you choose the right value of
    capacitor depending on the load resistance you connect to it you can
    minimize the ac or ripple component.



    Josh
     
  3. Brett

    Brett Guest

    I don't know about other oscilloscopes but mine has measurement buttons,
    which when I press VOLTS automatically detects the peak to peak voltage
    iirc.
     
  4. Yes, I would like to make a clarification here. The oscilloscope will show
    peak to peak or whatever else you want it to. But the multimeter usually
    will show RMS voltage unless specified.
    Josh
     
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