With the availabilities of low-cost, highly reliable and small-sized silicon diodes bridge rectifier is becoming more and more popular in comparison to center-tap and half-wave rectifier. It has many advantages over a center-tap and half-wave rectifier, as given below.
- The rectification efficiency of full-wave rectifier is double of that of a half-wave rectifier.
- The ripple voltage is low and of higher frequency in case of full-wave rectifier so simple filtering circuit is required.
- Higher output voltage, higher output power and higher Transformer Utilization Factor (TUF) in case of a full-wave rectifier.
- In a full-wave rectifier, there is no problem due to dc saturation of the core because the dc current in the two halves of the two halves of the transformer secondary flow in opposite directions.
- No centre tap is required in the transformer secondary so in case of a bridge rectifier the transformer required is simpler. If stepping up or stepping down of voltage is not required, transformer can be eliminated even.
- The PIV is one half that of centre-tap rectifier. Hence bridge rectifier is highly suited for high voltage applications.
- Transformer utilization factor, in case of a bridge rectifier, is higher than that of a centre-tap rectifier.
- For a given power output, power transformer of smaller size can be used in case of the bridge rectifier because current in both (primary and secondary) windings of the supply transformer flow for the entire ac cycle.