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New Book, Power Supplies Explained, Now Shipping


Radio amateurs often take a power supply for granted. After all, it’s just the box that, at the flick of a switch, provides stable dc voltage. A modern power supply is much more though, combining theory that dates back to the 19th century, incorporating the latest techniques in digital control, and taking advantage of a wealth of electronics practice in between. Power Supplies Explained sets out to explain in understandable terms what that box is doing, and it can also explain how you can design your own custom-built power supply.

Some believe there is a little magic in power supply design. Beginners may be especially wary of the challenging mixture of digital, analog, magnetics, and control loops, with cooling, EMC, and safety to contend with as well. While many books deal with in-depth theory, they often give little guidance on the practical aspects of achieving working designs. Power Supplies Explained is different. It describes how circuits are chosen for the application and how they’re designed, including inductors and transformers. Calculations are outlined simply, so the reader can use them as a basis for their own designs.

Chapters include descriptions of linear supplies and a wide range of switching-mode power supply types, from simple buck converters to the latest off-line high-efficiency types. Practical examples are based around typical Amateur Radio requirements, and, in many cases, are versions of commercial products the author has successfully designed. Other chapters cover magnetic theory, control loops, EMC, practical construction techniques, and test equipment. High-voltage power supplies are covered too, along with comprehensive guidance on safety.

Power Supplies Explained, published by the Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB) and imported by ARRL, is available from the ARRL Store (ARRL Item no. 5010, ISBN: 978-1-91019-364-8, $24.95 retail). Call 860-594-0355 or, toll-free in the US, 888-277-5289.