Re: Now the Bay Area rolling blackouts begin...

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Thu Jan 18 2001 - 07:15:43 MST

Chuck Kuecker wrote:
> At 05:55 PM 1/17/01 -0500, you wrote:
> >Actually, the generator will put out a decent AC for anything but
> >sensitive electronics like science instruments, etc. You can also, if
> >you get a multimeter with sine wave display you can download and build a
> >power conditioning circuit to soften the sine wave off of the blocky one
> >typically seen with cheaper gensets. You only need a Trace inverter if
> >you are using a DC generator like solar power.
> >
> >Also:
> >
> >
> Mike -
> What kind of AC generator puts out anything but a sine wave?
> I understand the square wave problem with inverters, but not with rotating
> machines like alternators. The big problem with the cheap sets is voltage
> and frequency regulation.
> Maybe if you severely overload the alternator, you will get a distorted
> waveform...magnetic saturation effects...

Some generators will put out 12 VAC, which then is stepped up to 120 VAC
by a transformer. Depending on the quality of its materials and design,
its output (due to CEMF and load power factor, harmonics, etc) could or
could not resemble a sine wave.

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