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Electrical Engineering/Mains Electricity by Country.


QUESTION: Dear Prof Cleggsan‎

Some Countries supply the Alternating current (AC) Electric Power supply with Input Voltage rating as 230 V, 50 Hz and some Countries supply Alternating current (AC) Electric Power supply with Input Voltage rating as 110 V, 60 Hz.

So similarly various Electrical appliances and devices viz Microwave Ovens, Geysers, Electric Iron, freeze, Television set, Fans etc are designed to work with this Input Electric power.

Do you feel people residing in those countries which supply the 110 V, 60 Hz Input Power supply will have electricity Meter rating i.e. Electricity Bill less (i.e. Power consumption - Watts) as compared to those people residing in countries which supply the 230 V, 50 Hz Input Power supply ?.

Electricity Bill - Meter reading will be less for consumers staying in those countries which supply 110 V, 60 Hz than for those consumers staying in those countries which supply 230 V, 50 Hz electric supply ?.

Does the Input Electric Power variant will make a difference in Output power consumption and subsequently in Electricity Meter reading ?.

Awaiting your reply,

Thanks & Regards,
Prashant S Akerkar

ANSWER: The key to your question is power consumption.  There may be very small differences in power consumed by the same model designed for each power supply but it is not of great consequence.  And, even if there were to be a great difference it would be insignificant vs the cost of converting the country's power supply to an alternate standard.  Frequency conversion is very costly whilst voltage change is merely a transformer to change the voltage ratings.

Hope this helps.

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QUESTION: Dear Prof Cleggsan

Thank you.

Do you still feel for the same model in different countries with different input voltages of 230 V AC, 50 Hz and 110 V AC, 60 Hz for the electrical equipment used, will the electronic meter bill (Units consumed) for 110 V AC will be less as compared to 230 V AC, 50 Hz ?.

There are pros and cons of using 230 V AC, 50 Hz v/s 110 V AC, 60 Hz
adopted as the Power supply standards by different countries ?.

Isn't it ?.

Awaiting your reply,

Thanks & Regards,
Prashant S Akerkar

ANSWER: The history of power formats chosen by country is very much historical and politically motivated.  And, yes there are pros and cons for each system.  A higher voltage means less current is required to pass the same amount of electrical power to the end of the line.  And, thereby giving a small benefit for the wires used because the line loss will be less; or that a smaller diameter or lower resistance wire can be used.  

But, it has little effect at the customer end of the line.  The appliance made by the same manufacture but equipped with motors and electronics suited to the country system will likely consume almost exactly the same power in the long run.

The accumulated power drawn by a given appliance of identical design will be very close to the same in each country.  If the washing machine, for example, consumes 150w in one country it will likely consume nearly the same power in another country.  Of course, the maker may decide for some unknown purpose use  a heavier duty motor in one country than another - which would create a difference,  of course.

Hope this helps.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Dear Prof Cleggsan

Thank you.

One Last Question.

Do you feel those countries which supply the 230 V , 50 Hz Input Power Supply through Power transmitting stations (MW) i.e Power Plants overall results in more cost factor for production (Generators equipment) and maintenance than those Power plants which generate 110 V, 60 Hz for distributing electricity to factories, Household etc.

i.e. To Summarize my query, Do those Power plants (where countries use
230 V AC, 50 Hz) can result in Overall more cost factor for running the Plant than those Power Plants (where countries use 110 V AC, 60 Hz) ?.

i.e. Production and maintenance cost for Power Pants increases in those countries (230 V Ac, 50 Hz) than countries (110 V AC, 60 Hz) or it should not ideally make any difference ?.

Awaiting your reply,

Thanks & Regards,
Prashant S Akerkar

The generating plants, which are mostly on a large scale, would have little differences for operating costs.  Especially  since over the many years of refinement they have reached a high level of optimization.  Generator efficiency in producing electrical power is very high and about the same in each case.  Ideally and practically the operations are similar and nearly identical in terms of efficiency and operations.

Distribution may be benefited in the 230v system since the wire size and line losses are slightly less.

These are my opinions.  

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