Application Note

AC-DC Converter Testing Fundamentals

Rohde - AC DC Conversion

This document is divided in two parts and starts with an introduction in AC-DC conversion principles in general. It will present the most common circuits used for different power levels. The switching mode power supply (SMPS) converter will be the main focus as they are used everywhere in the electronics. Especially the flyback converter design in different flavors are highlighted. Nevertheless, all measurements are also applicable for other SMPS converter designs operating at higher power levels.

In the second part of this document, most relevant testing methods and procedures of an AC-DC converter are highlighted. For each testing section, a fundamental part will be upfront discussed and it is followed by a presentation of a suitable measurement method. In this second part, the device under test (DUT) is considered as black box device and thus the structure is similar. Therefore, the testing parts consists of methods related to input tests, output tests and a combination of both like efficiency. Of course, some test performed at the output of the converter are also relevant for DC-DC converter, e.g. the validation of the output ripple.


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