Power supplies are an essential tool for working with electronics . They come in various different shapes and sizes reaching from "wall warts", usually with a fixed voltage, to adjustable laboratory supplies. For usage it is important to know the specifications of the supply e.g. the maximum current and voltage output. For the most part power supplies output DC; for AC have a look at a transformer.
Adjustable Power Supplies
Adjustable power supplies, sometimes also referred to as laboratory power supplies, can be set up to output various currents or voltages within their specification. Some supplies can only be set to a given voltage, while others can also limit the current to a maximum value.
- RND 320-KD3005D
- regulated power supply with max 30V/5A output
- adjustment in 10 mV or 1 mA steps
- Voltcraft LPS1305
- manual: Conrad Produktinfo
They are normally used for powering electronic circuits as they can output a broad range of voltages and can protect circuits from too high currents trough a current limit. Most laboratory supplies have isolated outputs meaning they are not referenced to ground. This allows for combining multiple supplies (in series or in parallel) to increase voltage of current and avoid shorts while working on grounded devices. To check whether a supply is isolated, take a look at the outputs. If there is, besides the positive and negative, a third (usually green) terminal then the supply is isolated. This third terminal is directly connected to ground, so in order to reference the supply to ground connect one of the outputs to it. Have a look at the manual in case something isn't clear or ask one of the tutors for the e.Room.