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Antonio Pacinotti was an Italian inventor who is known for being the original inventor of the direct-current dynamo.The dynamo was the first electrical generator capable of delivering power for industry. In 1860, Pacinotti invented a device that had two sets of windings wrapped around a common core. The windings were electronically isolated from the core and from one another. When an alternate voltage was applied across one winding an induced voltage was observed across the second winding. The induced voltage had similar shape to the applied voltage but with different magnitude. This invention is the transformer that we use today. Westinghouse further developed the transformer with several early models such as Gauland and Gibbs developed in 1883 and Stanley in 1886.
Without Pacinotti’s invention, the power grid would not exist. The main function of the transformer is to increase or decrease the voltage. When electric power is delivered to load centers, the voltage is stepped down for safer distribution over city streets. When the power reaches customer’s homes the voltage is stepped down more to the household level.
El-Sharkawi, M. A. (2012). Electric Energy: An Introduction, Third Edition. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.
Zuppardo, M. (2016, August 17). Retrieved from


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