• Ryan M. Pierson

What is the Difference Between Alternating and Direct Currents?

If you’re reading this post, there’s a good chance you’re probably doing so on a device that’s powered using either direct or alternating currents. While these two types of currents both share the same basic function of moving energy from point A to point B, they do so in very different ways. For quite some time, the widespread use of either one of these currents was debated very heavily. Each side believed that one was superior to the other for various reasons, and history determined that both of them have a rightful place.

Alternating Current

Lights running on alternating currents tend to flicker at a rate that is beyond most people’s ability to perceive. Roughly 60 times per second, the amount of energy sent to an AC outlet hits zero.

Nikola Tesla favored the use of alternating currents due to their ability to maintain a charge over long distances.

Direct Current

Thomas Edison created the first electronic power transmission using direct currents.


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