As we all know that electric current flows in two ways, AC and DC. So, we will study the difference between AC and DC over here. AC stands for Alternating Current while DC stands for Direct Current. When we talk about alternating current, we see that in here the current keeps switching from time to time. In other words, forward and backwards. On the other hand, the current flows in a single direction in a steady manner in direct current. Thus, you can say you can differentiate them on the basis of the direction of flowing electrons. In other words, electrons flow in a steady manner in one direction in DC while in AC, they switch their directions constantly.
Definition of AC
AC which means Alternating Current is one of the most universally used and preferred electric power. You will find it in household appliances, offices, buildings and more. We can identify it in waveform referred to as a sine wave. You can call it a curved line. These lines represent electric cycles and we measure them per second. Thus, we read it as Hertz or Hz. The use of AC happens for powering houses, buildings and more. It is because it is easier to produce and transport AC across long distances. Moreover, it also comes in use to power electric motors in washing machines, fridges and more.
Definition of DC
In DC, which means Direct Current, the flow of current will not keep changing occasionally. Instead, you will find the current electricity flowing in one direction that too at a steady voltage. We make use of DC for mainly supplying power to electrical devices as well as charging batteries. For instance, flashlights, mobile batteries, flat-screen TV sets, hybrid, electric vehicles and more. In other words, everything running on a battery and using an AC adapter when plugged in a wall or USB is relying on DC.
Difference between AC and DC
Important Difference Between AC And DC
|Basis of Comparison||AC||DC|
|Definition||In AC, the direction of the current keeps reversing periodically.||The direction of the current remains the same in DC.|
|Load Type||AC’s load is resistive, inductive or capacitive.||DC’s load is generally resistive in nature.|
|Frequency||50 or 60 Hz||Zero|
|Polarity||AC has a polarity (+, -)||It does not have polarity|
|The direction of flowing electrons||The direction of flow of electrons in AC is bidirectional||In DC, the flowing electrons are unidirectional|
|Attained from||Alternators||Generators, battery, solar cell and more.|
|Power Factor||It lies between 0 and 1||It always remains 1|
|Transmission||We can transmit it over long distance with a few losses||We can transmit it over long distance with negligible losses|
|Purpose||Used in factories, industries, households||Used in electroplating, electrolysis, electronic equipment, and more|
More details about AC
AC was first tested, based on the principles of Michael Faraday in 1832 through the use of a Dynamo Electric Generator. Moreover, the magnitude and polarity keep changing over time. Thus, in these current, the free electrons move in both directions.
We can easily convert the alternating current from the high value to low value and vice versa. A transformer will help in doing so. Therefore, it comes in use for transmitting and distributing mainly.
More details about DC
Direct current is when the electric charge inside the conductor is flowing in a single direction. Thus, instead of oscillating back and forth, it offers a constant voltage. The magnitude of the direct current is always constant while the frequency is zero.
The most common use of DC is in cell phones, electronic equipment, electric vehicles, welding and more. It has the combination of plus and minus sign, a dotted or straight line.
FAQs about AC and DC
Question 1: What is the difference between AC and DC in terms of frequency?
Answer 1: The frequency of AC depends upon the country. However, usually, it is 50Hz or 60Hz whereas DC has no frequency, zero.
Question 2: What is the direction of movement of electrons in DC?
Answer 2: Electrons only move in one direction in DC, forward.