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A.C waveform

  1. Aug 16, 2009 #1

    I want to ask that in all customers or house electrical lines AC voltage are forming sinusoidal waveform.

    http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/3859/voltagewavwform.jpg [Broken]

    This kind of waveform exists or not, if exists, so in were?
    And can we check waveform of any voltages or currents, which device show that,
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 16, 2009 #2
    The device which used to measure signals in voltage forms is oscilloscopes. On the simplest level, an oscilloscope has a pair of terminals for connecting the voltage to be measured and a display, which produces a graph of the voltage as a function of time.
    There are two different types of oscilloscopes: analog and digital. Although analog oscilloscopes are still available, because of the additional features and many other advantages, digital scopes are widely used.

    Creative thinking is enjoyable, Then think about your surrounding things and other thought products. http://electrical-riddles.com
  4. Aug 17, 2009 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    In addition to m.s.j.'s reply, I need to caution you about trying to measure the AC Mains voltages. Those voltages are extremely hazardous, especially if you do not have a lot of experience (which it sounds like you do not, based on your post). If you use an oscilloscope, you MUST understand what you are doing, since most oscilloscopes are grounded instruments, and you can short the AC Mains to ground if you connect it up incorrectly.

    Even if you are using a hand-held digital multimeter (DMM) to measure the amplitude of the AC Mains voltage, there is still a significant shock hazard if you are not careful.

    I would recommend that you consult a local expert or electrician to help answer your questions.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  5. Aug 18, 2009 #4


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    Science Advisor

    That waveform would not normally be found on power supplies to a house, but something similar could be found on the output of an inverter.

    An inverter converts a lower voltage (like 12 or 24 Volts DC ) to something like the power supply voltage to run low powered mains devices from 12 or 24 volts.

    Such inverters can run devices like shavers where the exact waveform does not matter too much. Ideally the waveform should be a sinewave, but cheaper inverters might produce a rough approximation of a sinewave.

    And, yes, you would observe the waveform (carefully ! ) with an oscilloscope.
  6. Aug 18, 2009 #5

    Dear berkeman,

    Thank you very much, your important caution shame me, I had just theoretical look-see to subject, that caution should be given by me.

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