Basic Electricity Testing: Know Everything About Electronic Relays

Basic Electricity Testing: Know Everything About Electronic Relays

As the title suggests, this article is little bit technical, talking about an electronic component—relays. First of all, here in this article, a brief definition of relays is given so you can understand the concept of this electronic component. Then, its importance and functions are discussed. So, read on to get to know more.

As far as definition is concerned, a relay is an electromagnetic switch, which is operated by a small electric current that is turned on or off by a much larger electric current. At the core of this component, there is an electromagnet coil wire, which becomes a temporary magnet when electricity passes across it.

If this definition seems difficult to understand, then you can understand the concept by supposing it as an electric lever that takes a relatively small amount of electricity to switch on, but able to control devices, such as heaters, lamps, motors and AC circuits, that need more electrical power to run.

Why a relay is used?

A relay is used to get three basic functions performed, including:

On/Off Control: Control a high power load in compressor of an air conditioner.

Limit Control: Used for motor speed control. Here, it disconnects a motor if it is running slower/faster than the desired speed.

Logic Operation: Used in test equipment, to connect an instrument to a number of testing points on the device under test.

Why is relay useful?

Relays are used in multifarious applications across many industries, including digital computers, telephone exchanges and automation system, to ensure protection of electric power systems from power blackouts and to regulate/control the generation/distribution of power. They are also found in your home appliances, such as refrigerators, washing systems, air-conditioning controls.

What are the types of relays?

There are mainly two types of relays, including Electromechanical and Solid State. As far as electromechanical relays are concerned, they have two moving parts, whereas, the latter one has no moving parts. The electromechanical relays come with multiple poles, are able to switch AC or DC with equal ease and do not require heat sink.

General-purpose relays are rated by the amount of current that their switch contacts are able to handle. Generally, they have one to eight poles and can be single or double throw. This type of relay is used in copy machines, computers and other electronic appliances.

Solid State relays use semiconductor switching elements, including triacs, diodes, thyristors, transistors and optical semiconductor to isolate input and output signals. Basic Electricity Testing: Know Everything About Electronic Relays hopes you’ve enjoyed this article.

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