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Power Conversion

Power ConversionThe term ‘power conversion’ applies to the ways in which the characteristics of electrical power may be changed.

A typical power supply converts utility (wall outlet) power from AC to DC. Most often it also converts the voltage to a lower level, but the voltage can alternately be converted to a higher voltage. The input current is converted in inverse proportion to the ratio of the input and output voltages; for example, a power supply with a 120 volt input and a 12 volt (1/10th of the input voltage) 10 amp output would have an input draw of approximately 1 amp (1/10th of the output current).

Other forms of power conversion are from DC to AC, and from one AC frequency to another—for example, from the 50 and 60 Hz of utility power to the 400 Hz used in aircraft.