The Importance of Power Electronics

The systems and machines of our world depend on power electronics for the ability to run efficiently and sustainably. Power electronics is the application of solid-state electronics for the control and conversion of electric power. It applies to both the systems and products involved in converting and controlling the flow of electrical energy, allowing the electricity needed for everyday products to be delivered with maximum efficiency in the smallest and lightest package.

According to an article by ABB, about 40% of the world’s power needs are met by electrical energy. That number is quickly rising as the trend towards renewable energy sources increases. Without power electronics, this energy cannot be harnessed and delivered efficiently and energy from renewable sources, such as solar and wind, could not be fed into the electricity grid.

Power electronics allow solar energy to be used by converting the Direct Current energy produced by solar panels into AC used in the commercial electrical grid. Wind energy also needs to be converted and must be fed into a grid at a constant frequency despite changing wind conditions. Other forms of alternative power such as thermal, hydro and nuclear also take advantage of the benefits of power electronics to effectively deliver power.

Not only are power electronics used to deliver and control power in the electric grid, but they are also used in numerous everyday devices. Everything from power steering in your car, battery chargers, cell phones, and microwaves utilize power electronics. The use of this technology can increase productivity and decrease costs for the manufacturer and the consumer.

Power electronics also allow for the variance of electric motor drive speeds, reducing the amount of energy consumed by making processes more efficient. Without this technology electric motors would always run at full speed consuming more energy than necessary. Power electronics converters also conserve energy by making it possible to transport electricity over long distances with minimal loss by transforming alternating current (AC) into high-voltage direct current (HVDC) and vice-versa.

Advances in power electronics allow power to be delivered in a more dependable and less costly manner saving both energy and costs for the consumer. The energy saved by taking advantage of power electronics is important for our changing environment by using less valuable resources. Every industry uses power electronics including desalinization plants, painting vehicles or testing rail cars all PCTI applications. Each industry is different and requires custom power electronics solutions.

PCTI provides customer power electronics for industry in the highest power ranges available globally. PCTI builds high current DC power supplies, battery chargers and frequency converters from a range of standard power and control modules that offer high performance, reliability, and sophisticated control systems all custom engineered and built to fit industry needs. We offer applications assistance to customers to ensure equipment specifications meet their exact needs.

The applications for dynamic power electronics technology are growing exponentially and PCTI is invested in being a major part of this changing market. To learn more about our power electronics and all our products visit our website or contact us directly to discuss your needs. Follow PCTI on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ to stay up to date on our latest developments.