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Explain the operation of full wave rectifiers with relevant waveforms.
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The full wave rectifier can be further divided mainly into following types.

1. Center Tapped Full Wave Rectifier

2. Full Wave Bridge Rectifier

1.Center Tapped Full Wave Rectifier

Center tap is the contact made at the middle of the winding of the transformer.

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 In the center tapped full wave rectifier two diodes were used. These are connected to the center tapped secondary winding of the transformer. Above circuit diagram shows the center tapped full wave rectifier. It has two diodes. The positive terminal of two diodes is connected to the two ends of the transformer. Center tap divides the total secondary voltage into equal parts.


Full Wave Rectifier Working:  The primary winding of the center tap transformer is applied with the Ac voltage. Thus the two diodes connected to the secondary of the transformer conducts alternatively. For the positive half cycle of the input diode D1 is connected to the positive terminal and D2 is connected to the negative terminal.  Thus diode D1 is in forward bias and the diode D2 is reverse biased. Only diode D1 starts conducting and thus current flows from diode and it appears across the load RL. So positive cycle of the input is appeared at the load.  During the negative half cycle the diode D2 is applied with the positive cycle. D2 starts conducting as it is in forward bias. The diode D1 is in reverse bias and this does not conduct. Thus current flows from diode D2 and hence negative cycle is also rectified, it appears at the load resistor RL.  By comparing the current flow through load resistance in the positive and negative half cycles, it can be concluded that the direction of the current flow is same. Thus the frequency of rectified output voltage is two times the input frequency. The output that is rectified is not pure, it consists of a dc component and a lot of ac components of very low amplitudes.  


Output waveforms of full wave rectifier 

The output waveforms of the full wave rectifier is shown in the below figure.  The first waveform represents an input AC signal. The second waveform and third waveform represents the DC signals or DC current produced by diode D1 and diode D2.  The last waveform represents the total output DC current produced by diodes D1and D2. From the above waveforms, we can conclude that the output current produced at the load resistor is not a pure DC but a pulsating DC.

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