Ques-1: What is a transformer and how does it work?
Ans: A transformer is an electrical apparatus designed to convert alternating current from one voltage to another. It can be designed to “step up” or “step down” voltages and works on the magnetic induction principle. A transformer has no moving parts and is a completely static solid state device, which insures, under normal operating conditions, a long and trouble-free life. Construction of transformer is very simple, two or more coils of insulated wire wound on a laminated steel or iron core. When voltage is introduced to one coil, called the primary winding, it magnetizes the iron core. A voltage is then induced in the other coil, called the secondary winding or output coil. The change of voltage (or voltage ratio) between the primary and secondary depends on the turns ratio of the two coils.
Ques-2: What are taps and when are they used?
Ans: Taps are provided on some transformers on the high voltage winding to correct for high or low voltage conditions, and still deliver full rated output voltages at the secondary terminals. Standard tap arrangements are at two-and-one-half and five percent of the rated primary voltage for both high and low voltage conditions. For example: if the transformer has a 480 volt primary and the available line voltage is running at 504 volts, the primary should be connected to the 5% tap above normal in order that the secondary voltage be maintained at the proper rating.
Ques-3: What is the difference between “Insulating”, “Isolating” and “Shielded Winding” transformers? Ans: Insulating and isolating transformers are identical. These terms are used to describe the isolation of the primary and secondary windings, or insulation between the two. A shielded transformer is designed with a metallic shield between the primary and secondary windings to attenuate transient noise. This is especially important in critical applications such as computers, process controllers and many other microprocessor controlled devices. All two, three and four winding transformers are of the insulating or isolating types. Only auto transformers, whose primary and secondary are connected to each other electrically, are not of the insulating or isolating variety.
Ques-4. Can transformers be operated at voltages other than nameplate voltages? Ans: In some cases, transformers can be operated at voltages below the nameplate rated voltage. In NO case should a transformer be operated at a voltage in excess of its nameplate rating, unless taps are provided for this purpose. When operating below the rated voltage, the KVA capacity is reduced correspondingly. For example, if a 480 volt primary transformer with a 240 volt secondary is operated at 240 volts, the secondary voltage is reduced to 120 volts. If the transformer was originally rated 10 KVA, the reduced rating would be 5 KVA, or in direct proportion to the applied voltage.
Ques-5: Why efficiency of transformer is high?
Ans: Transformer is a static device which transfers the power from one circuit to other through electromagnetic induction. In electrical transformer as there are no moving parts, no friction and windage losses occur and other losses in transformer are less as magnetic path of a transformer is a closed loop (no air gap exist like induction motor between two circuits). Losses in the transformer are very less compared to any other rotating machine, hence efficiency of transformers will be very high. Efficiency will be of the order of 95% to 98%.
Ques-6: Can transformers be used in parallel?
Ans: Single phase transformers can be used in parallel only when their impedances and voltages are equal. If unequal voltages are used, a circulating current exists in the closed network between the two transformers, which will cause excess heating and result in a shorter life of the transformer. In addition, impedance values of each transformer must be within 7.5% of each other. For example:...
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