what is duty cycle

What is Duty Cycle? Duty Cycle in Electrical and Electronics

What is Duty Cycle?

Duty cycle is the ratio of time on a circuit’s when the load is on compared to the time when the load is OFF. OR we can say the Duty cycle is the measure of system active time.

Basically, it is measured in percentage (%) that what percent of the load is ON compared to OFF-load.

The formula of Duty Cycle:

formula of duty cycle

Where D is the duty cycle,

PW is the pulse width (pulse on or active time)

T is the total period of the signal.

Description of Duty Cycle:

If a digital signal spends its half of the time ON and the other half OFF, then the digital signal has the duty cycle of 50%. If the percentage is higher than 50%, the digital signal spends more time in the high state than the low state and vice versa if the duty cycle is less than 50%.

More the duty cycle percentage (%) betters the system operation.

For example, if the duty cycle is 40% it means the load is ON for 40% of the time and OFF for the 60% of Time.

Here is a figure that illustrates better about duty cycle:

duty cycle example

  • 50% of Duty Cycle indicates that system is active for 1/2 times.
  • 75% of Duty Cycle indicates that system is active for 3/4 times.
  • 25% of Duty Cycle indicates that system is active for 1/4 times.

Duty Cycle in Electronics:

  • In Digital Electronics, signals are represented by logic levels of 1 and 0.The Logic 1 stands for the presence of an electric signal and 0 in the absence of an electric signal.

    For Example,

  • a Digital signal has a square output (10101010) then the duty cycle for this signal will 50% because the pulse remains high for almost half (1/2) of the period or low for another half (1/2) of the period.
  • Almost every component and system has its own duty cycle value which indicates that it will be operated up to this value of duty cycle.

Duty Cycle in Electrical:

   For Example:

  • Electrical motors use very less duty cycle. if a motor runs for one out of 200 seconds or 1/200 of the time, then, its duty cycle is 1/200, or 0.5 percent

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