# How Does A Power Inverter Work by paydot888

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```									How Does A Power Inverter Work?

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Summary:
People always ask us “exactly how does a power inverter work?” The answer
to this question often surprises our customers. Car power inverters work
much more simply than mysteriously, and the learning curve required to
understand them requires no more than a very basic knowledge of
electricity. Essentially, there are two forms of electrical power in the
Universe: Direct Current (DC) and Alternating Current (AC). Direct
current flows continuously from the positive electrical po...

Keywords:
How Does A Power Inverter Work?

Article Body:
People always ask us “exactly how does a power inverter work?” The answer
to this question often surprises our customers. Car power inverters work
much more simply than mysteriously, and the learning curve required to
understand them requires no more than a very basic knowledge of
electricity. Essentially, there are two forms of electrical power in the
Universe: Direct Current (DC) and Alternating Current (AC). Direct
current flows continuously from the positive electrical pole to the
negative electrical pole. Alternating current flows back and forth
between the two poles. DC current occurs in Nature and batteries, while
AC current is man-made and supplies power through the public utility grid
that supports human industry and infrastructure. Car batteries presented
a problem in the past when people realized they needed to operate
traditionally AC-powered devices in their cars but could not do so
because of incompatible current requirements. Manufacturers like Vector
stepped up to solve this dilemma by working to design car power inverters
that would safely and efficiently convert DC to AC. Their successful
engineering has resulted in a wide range of compact, rectangular devices
that connect to batteries and output the resulting alternating current
safely through one or more standard electrical plugs.

Two factors determine how a power inverter works: wave output and wattage
output. Wave output describes the physical appearance of electrical
signals as they move across an oscilloscope. Square waves appear exactly
as their name specifies: like squares on a grid. Pure sine waves, also
called true sine waves, appear as visible waves on the screen. Sine wave
car power inverters work better than square wave power inverters when
uninterrupted power flow is a critical issue. In fact, true sine output
is sometimes slightly superior to that of public utility power grids!
Because of this, they are also the most expensive devices of their kind
on the market. Recent advances in technology have accommodated users on a
budget with a hybrid design generally referred to as either a modified
square or modified sine wave power inverter. The technical differences
that determine how a true sine car power inverter works and how a
modified sine power inverter works are too minor to produce any
noticeable effects with standard electronics. Only the most high-end
equipment requires true sine output, and the cost of these devices may
justify the additional investment in pure sine technology to deliver
maximum quality and reliable performance.

Another new development that allows car power inverters to work with even
more reliability than ever before is the sophisticated Soft Start
Technology, branded “SST” by manufacturers such as Vector. SST is the
next step in the evolution of how power inverters work. The very first
power inverters for cars would only work intermittently during cold
engine starts. Because they could not pull enough power from the battery,
they would shut down from current underload and require a manual restart.
SST resolves this issue by gradually increasing voltage ramp up during
engine startup. If the output dips for any reason, SST makes instant
adjustments to compensate and will prevent most shutdowns. If in the rare
event a shutdown does occur, the newer car power inverters work
automatically to restart themselves without distracting the driver from