Half Wave Rectifier – Circuit diagram and working principle

Half Wave Rectifier:

This post provides an information about half wave recifier and its working principle.

half wave rectifier
half wave rectifier

In this type only one diode is used. Generally a step-down transformer is used to provide the required secondary voltage. The transformer isolates the load from the line. This reduces the possibility of electric shock.

In the positive half cycle of secondary voltage, the diode is forward biased for voltages greater than the offset voltage. The offset voltage is 0.7 V for silicon diodes and 0.3 V for germanium diodes. This produces a half sine wave of voltage across the load resistor.

In the negative half cycle, the diode is reverse biased. The load current drops to zero.

The load current is always in the same direction. This provides rectification.

Average Voltage = Vdc = Vp/p = 0.318 Vp

Where, Vp = peak value of voltage across secondary. The value of direct current, the diode can handle is called as ‘Current rating of diode’ (Io).

Peak Inverse Voltage – In the negative half – cycle, the diode is reverse-biased. All secondary voltage appears across the diode. The maximum negative (reverse) voltage appearing across the diode is called the ‘Peak Inverse Voltage’ (PIV). To avoid break down, the PIV must be less than PIV rating of the diode. For half wave rectifier PIV = Vp.

Maximum efficiency of half wave rectifier is 40.6 %.

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