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The Ins and Outs of High Voltage Transformers

High voltage power transformer substation.

When it comes to electricity distribution & supply, the role of transformers is essentially crucial. Before electricity reaches our homes from power stations, its overall voltage needs to be reduced in such a way that our electric wires and equipment are able to operate without getting damaged. Electrical gadgets of even the highest quality such as UPS systems from Nantech - one of the leading UPS manufacturers in Chennai can operate smoothly because transformers do their job.

So, high voltage transformers come into the picture to ensure the optimum performance of electricity supply systems and the safety of users. Needless to say, the role of transformers is quite vital. Let us learn more about the overall scheme of things.

Understanding High Voltage Transformers

Essentially, high-voltage transformers are electrical equipment with the ability to decrease the voltage phases of electricity. These transformers need to have the highest standards of insulation installed in them to meet the usage requirements of people living in a particular locality. However, even the best high-voltage transformers experience breakdowns when the voltage levels surge too much in a limited time. Technically, all high-voltage transformers operate in a single phase of voltage having core-type functionality.

Varieties of High Voltage Transformers

Electromagnetic induction is the general principle based on which all high-voltage transformers operate. However, there are three important varieties of transformers, namely:

  • Electromagnetic Transformers- These have two major parts- primary & secondary coils. The primary coil tends to have a substantial number of coils, unlike the secondary coil. Therefore the primary coil allows electricity at high voltage to get reduced to lower voltage using the scientific concept of electromagnetic induction.
  • Capacitor Voltage Transformers- These kinds of transformers are a lot more effective when it comes to reducing the voltage of incoming electric current. The simple rationale behind this is that they have multiple capacitors working in a series leading to an optimised reduction of voltage. Please note that the cost of insulation for these transformers is significantly higher.
  • Optical Voltage Transformers- These transformers are basically sensors that make use of the Faraday Effect to measure the voltage of incoming electricity. The electricity creates a magnetic field through which light rays are allowed to pass. A linear relationship is established between the magnitude of the magnetic field and the rotation of the plane of polarization as light passes through the magnetic field induced by electrical currents. Therefore, as the current increases, so does the magnetic field, and so does the angle at which the polarized rotation is oriented.

Various Designs of High Voltage Transformers

To transform voltage as well as current electric levels, transformers use the concept of electromagnetic induction in both coils. They could be set up in either a single phase or 3 phase. When you start moving towards the bottom of the list of the high current voltage coils, the size as well as costs of a transformer tend to increase. The single-phase configurations can be set up for single-phase, dual-phase, quad phases as well as ladders or even 5-lead. Three-phase configurations, on the other hand, are set up for Wye and Delta configurations.

If the high voltage transformers are to be utilized for multiple low voltages and also to avoid short circuits, then they must have multiple primary. When you are looking to buy or design High-voltage transformers, there are some crucial factors to consider. These factors include the highest ratings for secondary voltage & current, greater output as well and power ratings. These devices can also be built in the form of toroidal transformers. Laminated transformers may also be considered. Toroidal pulse transformers generally have copper wire surrounded around with a cylindrical core to allow the magnetic flux to flow. On the other hand, the laminated transformers have layered cores. They are also referred to as E-I transformers which have been insulated using an insulating dielectric material.

The Modus Operandi of High Voltage Transformers

The method of operation of high voltage transformers must be pretty clear from reading the above sections. Various means and methods are used to decrease the voltage of electric currents in the transformers so the electricity becomes safe for use by the components to which it shall go.

The fundamental principle in transformer operation is this– an electrical charge generates a magnetic field and the magnetic force inside the winding can start producing voltages across the coil. As a result of their close vicinity, the electricity in the primary coil generates a magnetic field causing power output throughout the secondary coil to be much lower in terms of voltage. If the secondary coil has more turns, it generates more voltage, and the transformer is referred to as “set-up”. On the other hand, a lower number of turns produces lesser voltage and is termed a “step down”.

At its core, high-voltage transformers are converters that receive electricity at high voltages. Thereafter, voltages are converted from one level configuration to the other, typically from greater to lesser. The insulating abilities of these power transformers should always be cautiously created to endure these high voltages

Also Read: The Complete Buying Guide For Voltage Stabilisers

Practical Applications of High Voltage Transformers

High-voltage transformers are also utilized to power plasma generators. Specially designed coils are employed to increase voltages to levels that are sufficient to generate plasma. Wind turbines and other crucial sources of renewable energy make use of these devices to transfer energy to where it is needed. Other application areas for these devices encompass:

  • Braking devices for transportation
  • Production of machinery
  • Electrostatic precipitators used in the management of waste
  • Voltage measurement and monitoring equipment

Staying Safe When Working With High-Voltage Transformers

Since current transformers have the ability to handle high voltages, it is critical that precautionary measures are taken wherever it has to be handled directly, with the goal of preventing accidents.

  • Look for burning odors as well as any dented or misaligned parts during the pre-installation checking.
  • When starting to work with transformers, keep the current input disconnected.
  • Always put on appropriate safety gear of high quality.
  • Pay close attention to the voltage output of the device.
  • Ascertain that you are aware of the peak power of your transformers. Keep in mind that more than one transformer can facilitate the balancing of load.
  • Make sure that small metallic objects are not in the vicinity of the transformer.
  • Ensure proper earthing of the transformer.
  • Keep the transformer and all its parts away from liquids.


The significance of using top-notch transformers in a distribution system for electricity cannot be overstated. Transformers are an essential component for ensuring good electrical service and network security. High-voltage transformers are used in a wide range of industrial sectors and systems. They seem to be especially helpful for securely managing voltages lesser than or equal to 15,000 volts.

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Author: Nantech Team
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