Dr. Ahmed G. Abo-Khalil

Electrical Engineering Department

autotransformer

An autotransformer (sometimes called autostep down transformer) is an electrical transformer with only one winding. The auto prefix refers to the single coil acting on itself rather than any automatic mechanism. In an autotransformer portions of the same winding act as both the primary and secondary. The winding has at least three taps where electrical connections are made. An autotransformer can be smaller, lighter and cheaper than a standard dual-winding transformer however the autotransformer does not provide electrical isolation.

Autotransformers are often used to step up or down between voltages in the 110-117-120 volt range and voltages in the 220-230-240 volt range, e.g., to output either 110 or 120V (with taps) from 230V input, allowing equipment from a 100 or 120V region to be used in a 230V region.

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