What is a Transformer? What are its Features?

9 May 2023

A transformer, commonly known as “trafo,” is a device used to transmit, increase, and distribute electrical current. What is the purpose of a transformer, and what are its characteristics? You can find the answers to these questions and more by reading our article prepared by Trans-El.

We are familiar with transformers as devices that enable the flow of electrical current between two or more circuits. Transformers are particularly essential in electrical grids and are used in alternating current circuits.

Energy generated is transmitted to cities and villages through transformers. Especially, electrical transformers play a crucial role in transmitting electrical energy with low cost and minimal loss.

Different types of transformers are manufactured based on needs and usage. Although each transformer has a different purpose, their general characteristics and functions serve a common purpose.

What is the Role of Transformers?

Transformers are used to increase or decrease the voltage and current in an electrical circuit. The roles of transformers, which enable the transmission and distribution of electrical energy, include:

  • Increasing or decreasing AC (Alternating Current) voltage.
  • Maintaining power at a constant level with varying voltage.

In line with these tasks, we can understand what transformers are used for in general:

  • Transformers change the voltage, waveform, and intensity of electrical current.
  • They connect two or more electrical circuits.
  • They transmit energy passing through an electrical circuit, utilizing electromagnetic fields.
  • When there is a need for changes in current and voltage values at a specific power level, transformers facilitate this transformation.

Operating Principle of Transformers

To fulfill these tasks related to electrical energy, transformers operate on a systematic and orderly working principle.

They work by transferring electrical energy from one conductor to another through a magnetic flux. Typically consisting of two coils and a core, transformers generate a magnetic flux when voltage is applied to one of the coils on the core. This magnetic flux has continuously changing intensity and direction.

This magnetic flux induces voltage on the output coil, facilitating the transfer of energy.

In summary, voltage is applied to the primary coil, which generates a magnetic field. The induced magnetic field transfers energy to the secondary coil, allowing transformers to perform their functions.

For a more detailed explanation of the working principle of transformers, you can refer to our article titled “How Does the Transformer Working Principle Work?”

Applications of Transformers

Transformers are used to supply electrical current in homes, power plants, and all devices that draw power from the grid. In short, transformers are used wherever alternating current is utilized.

Of course, the same transformer is not used for every device or location. Different types of transformers exist depending on the intended use and the required power flow.

Let’s take a closer look at these transformer types:

Types of Transformers

To categorize transformers, it is not sufficient to talk about them in a single category. This is because transformers that meet different needs are produced in various forms and types. These categories include:

  • Core type
  • Operating environment
  • Number of phases
  • Method of voltage increase or decrease

When categorized by the number of phases, transformers can be divided into single-phase and three-phase transformers:

Single-Phase Transformers

These transformers have a single input winding. Even if the input winding is single, there can be multiple output windings.

Three-Phase Transformers

Transformers with multiple input windings are classified as three-phase transformers. Generally, both input and output windings are multiple in three-phase transformers.

Regarding core types, transformers can be divided into three categories:

Distributed Type

These transformers have a plus-shaped appearance, and their windings are wound around the legs. These types of cores have minimal leakage flux, almost negligible. This minimizes idle currents, ensuring low idle currents.

Core Type

These transformers have easily insulated windings. They are generally preferred in high-voltage transformers.

Shell Type

Used in low-voltage transformers, these transformers have windings wound around the central leg, opposite to the core type.

Transformers can also be categorized according to their intended use:

  • Insulation Transformers: Used to isolate circuits from each other.
  • Auto Transformers: With smaller dimensions compared to other types, these transformers are used for both input and output, providing high efficiency.
  • Step-Down Transformers: Transformers where the input voltage is higher than the output voltage, reducing the voltage of electrical energy.
  • Step-Up Transformers: These transformers have the opposite function of step-down transformers, increasing the voltage of electrical energy.

As Trans-El, we manufacture power, distribution, on-load tap changers (OLTC), and special design transformers, adhering to high-quality standards, for international shipments. For information on these transformer types, you can visit our website.

Nano Medya