# Easiest Way to Raise DC Source's Voltage?

• Driggers
In summary, the easiest way to raise the voltage of a DC source is by using a step-up transformer. This device works by increasing the voltage while decreasing the current, allowing for a higher output voltage. Another option is to use a voltage multiplier circuit, which uses capacitors and diodes to multiply the input voltage. However, this method may be more complex and require more components. Alternatively, using a DC-DC boost converter can also raise the voltage, but it may be more expensive and require additional design considerations. Ultimately, the best method will depend on the specific application and desired voltage output.
Driggers
What would be the easiest way to raise the voltage of a DC source? (Mainly batteries)

For example, say I have a 9V battery and would like to convert it to 120VDC. What would be the best way of doing this without just hooking 13 or 14 9V batteries is series?

If this is impractical, please feel free to educate me.

Thanks,
John

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Driggers said:
What would be the easiest way to raise the voltage of a DC source? (Mainly batteries)

For example, say I have a 9V battery and would like to convert it to 120V. What would be the best way of doing this without just hooking 13 or 14 9V batteries is series?

If this is impractical, please feel free to educate me.

Thanks,
John

Is that 120Vac (like AC Mains), or 120Vdc?

Either way, that is a dangerous voltage level. What background do you have in working with high voltage? What is the intended use?

berkeman said:
Is that 120Vac (like AC Mains), or 120Vdc?

Either way, that is a dangerous voltage level. What background do you have in working with high voltage? What is the intended use?

DC, sorry, I'll fix that.

And I have a some experience with HV (up to about 500V), but its all been in a lab with HV power supplies. And that's just an example voltage, it wouldn't necessarily be that high. But I'm not sure I would call 120V "high voltage". The IEC defines HV for DC being in excess of 1500V. 120V is on the bottom of the Low Voltage range technically. Sorry if that sounded a bit rude; I appreciate your concern and will take proper precautions.

As for the use, its pretty simple. I need to construct a Helmholtz Coil and want the magnetic field to be decently strong.

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Driggers said:
DC, sorry, I'll fix that.

And I have a some experience with HV (up to about 500V), but its all been in a lab with HV power supplies. And that's just an example voltage, it wouldn't necessarily be that high. But I'm not sure I would call 120V "high voltage". The IEC defines HV for DC being in excess of 1500V. 120V is on the bottom of the Low Voltage range technically. Sorry if that sounded a bit rude; I appreciate your concern and will take proper precautions.

As for the use, its pretty simple. I need to construct a Helmholtz Coil and want the magnetic field to be decently strong.

For the purposes of the PF, IMO, anything above SELV is "High Voltage". We get way too many newbies on here who have no idea of the shock and fire hazard presented by voltages above SELV, and also no idea about the safety regulations for dealing with AC Mains voltages when building projects.

It does sound like you have some experience, and Baluncore's advice is good. I've never built a boost converter up to that voltage level -- the ratio of Vout/Vin does seem a bit problematic. How many turns are you planning on for your Helmholtz coil? It's obviously the current that matters, and you can use bigger coil AWGs to get good currents without so much voltage boost...

BTW, you know that at best, DC-DC converters are near 100% power efficient, right? So that means that the current you draw from your 12V source will be about 10x the current that you supply at 120V. Is there a reason that you need to start with a 12V source? Are you wanting to make this battery-powered, instead of using AC Mains as the power source?

I don't see why such high voltages are needed at all. The magnetic field depends on the current and not the voltage. If the resistance of the coils is too high to get the maximum current that your supply can deliver ,use less loops of thicker wire.

If you use half the number of turns,and wire with twice the cross section, you can use half the voltage, twice the current, and get the same field and use the same power and the same amount of copper.

googling up some figures for a Helmholtz coil

http://www.phywe.com/461/pid/2241/Helmholtz-coils,-one-pair.htm

show that it has 2.1 ohm resistance and a maximum current of 5A, so you need only 10.5 V to get the maximum allowed current through the coil. (If your power supply can deliver 10 A for 2 coils)

berkeman said:
So that means that the current you draw from your 12V source will be about 10x the current that you supply at 120V.
Minor typo with a major impact there; you meant 1/10th the current.

russ_watters said:
Minor typo with a major impact there; you meant 1/10th the current.
I think not.
10A * 12V = 120 W
1A * 120V = 120 W
The English language is elegantly reversible.

Oy, you're right. I got confused by the order of the phrasing -- that's for posting first thing when I woke up.

## 1. How can I increase the voltage of my DC source?

The easiest way to raise the voltage of a DC source is by using a transformer. A transformer can step up the voltage to a desired level. Alternatively, you can also use a voltage multiplier circuit.

## 2. Can I use a resistor to increase the voltage of my DC source?

No, using a resistor will not increase the voltage of a DC source. In fact, it will reduce the voltage by dissipating some of the energy as heat. A resistor can only be used to limit the current in a circuit.

## 3. Is it possible to boost the voltage of a DC source without using any external components?

Yes, it is possible to increase the voltage of a DC source without using external components. This can be achieved by using a DC-DC converter or a voltage regulator. These devices can efficiently step up the voltage without the need for additional components.

## 4. What are the potential risks of raising the voltage of a DC source?

Increasing the voltage of a DC source can be dangerous if not done properly. It can lead to electric shocks, damage to equipment, or even fire hazards. It is important to follow safety guidelines and use proper equipment when working with high voltages.

## 5. Can I use multiple DC sources in series to increase the voltage?

Yes, you can connect multiple DC sources in series to obtain a higher voltage. However, it is important to ensure that the sources have the same voltage rating and are properly connected to avoid any damage to the sources or the circuit.

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