What is an Inverter?


The first inverters were created in the 19th century and were mechanical in nature. For example, a rotating motor would be used to constantly change the positive and negative connections of a DC power source. Today, we use electronic switches made from transistors, solid-state devices with no moving parts. Transistors are made from semiconductor materials such as silicon or gallium arsenide and control the flow of current based on external electrical signals.

If you have a home solar system, your inverter may perform several functions. In addition to converting your solar power to AC electricity, it can also monitor the system and provide a gateway for communication with computer networks. Solar and battery storage systems rely on advanced inverters to run without any grid support during power outages, if designed to do so.

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