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What is AC and DC?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by jerald150, Aug 8, 2011.

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  1. jerald150


    Aug 8, 2011
    what is AC and DC? DC is the Direct Current:)
  2. lawcuenca


    Jun 16, 2011
    Direct Current (DC) has constant amplitude with respect to time. While Alternating Current (AC) has varying amplitude amplitudes with respect to time.
  3. alfa88


    Dec 1, 2010
    What is AC/DC

    Here is my simplistic explanation:

    DC (Direct Current) is the type of voltage one would get from a battery, lightning, static. An everyday example is a car battery. You have a positive terminal and a negative. Of course one can derive voltage from a generator where a coil rotates past magnets and produces electricity.

    AC(Alternating Current) is what one usually uses in their homes. An Alternating Current generator (alternator) would differ from the DC generator in that one magnet would be reversed so that the output would be +. - and then instantaneously change to -, +.

    Alternating Current has the advantage that it can be stepped up or down with transformers and fairly easy to convert to Direct Current.
    Direct Current has the advantage that it is directional, i.e., polarized.
  4. poor mystic

    poor mystic

    Apr 8, 2011
    Hi Jerald150:)
    Direct current is a flow of electrons that might typically come from a chemical reaction in a dry cell. The flow is pretty constant and always in the one direction.

    Until the famous Tesla came along and invented it, AC as such didn't exist. AC is an entirely artificial protocol, which varies slightly from country to country. Use of alternating current confers a lot of advantages such as ease of voltage change; brushless motor technology that doesn't wear out as quickly; and the ability to completely isolate loads from ground.
    To really understand AC, you need to get a bit of background first. Let's see if we can geta few educational resources for you...

    You'd think there would be some website somewhere with a java animation of the AC system in operation. Does anybody know of such a thing?
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