The Important Characteristics of a Rectifier Circuit

The important points to be studied while analysing the various rectifier circuits are,
a) Waveform of the load current : As rectifier converts a.c. to pulsating d.c., it is important to analyze the nature of the current through load which ultimately determines the waveform of the load voltage.
b) Regulation of the output voltage : As the load current changes, load voltage changes. Practically load voltage should remain constant. So concept of regulation is to study the effect of change in load current on the load voltage.
c) Rectifier efficiency : It signifies, how efficiency the rectifier circuit converts a.c. power into d.c. power.
d) Peak value of current in the rectifier circuit : The peak value is the maximum value of an alternating current in the rectifier circuit. This decides the rating of the rectifier circuit element which is diode.
e) Peak value of voltage across the rectifier element in the reverse direction (PIV) : When the diode is not conducting, the reverse voltage gets applied across the diode. The peak value of such voltage decides the peak inverse voltage i.e. PIV rating of a diode.
f) Ripple factor : The output of the rectifier is of pulsating d.c. type the amount of a.c. content in the output can be mathematically expressed by a factor called ripple factor. Less is the ripple factor, better is the performance of the circuit.
Using one or more diodes, following rectifier circuits can be designed.
1.  Half wave rectifier       2.  Full wave rectifier       3.  Bridge rectifier