Rectifiers and inverters are power conversion devices, mainly used in AC and DC power systems. This article will introduce the working principle and application scenarios of inverter and rectifier respectively, and then analyze the comparison of inverter vs rectifier, what are the differences.



1. The working principle of the rectifier

A rectifier is a device that converts AC to DC. The basic principle is to use semiconductor devices (e.g., diodes) for unidirectional conductivity, so that the current can only flow in one direction, thus converting alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC).

The main role of the rectifier is to convert the AC power supplied by the power grid into DC power for electronic equipment to meet the requirements of electronic equipment on the power supply voltage and current quality.

Rectifiers come in single phase bridge rectifier and three phase bridge rectifier types. Common electronic devices such as computers, cell phones, LCD TVs, etc. require the use of rectifiers to obtain the required DC power.

2. The working principle of the inverter

An inverter is a device that converts DC power to AC power. The basic principle is to use a DC converter to convert power from a battery or other DC power source into high frequency AC power, which is then converted to AC power of the desired frequency by an inverter.

Inverters can be categorized into two types: single-phase inverters and three-phase inverters. Single-phase inverters are used in the traditional energy sector. Three-phase inverters are used in new energy sources such as solar and wind systems. Also, inverters are an indispensable part of modern electronic equipment, such as UPS batteries. 


3. What are the applications of rectifiers?

Rectification is the process of converting alternating current to direct current. It is mainly used in electrification, including in electric motors, lighting, communications, computers and other equipment.

① Electric motors

Electric motors are one of the most widely used devices in the field of electrification. Many motors are driven using a DC power source, so a rectifier converts the AC power to the desired DC power. Rectifiers are widely used in motor drives, automotive chargers, industrial automation, and other applications.

② Lighting

Many LED lamps and HID lamps (e.g. fluorescent tubes and neon lamps) need to be converted from AC to DC in order to operate. Therefore, rectifiers are widely used in lighting, which are used in domestic, commercial and industrial areas.

③ Communication

Most of the communication equipment needs to be driven using a DC power source. Therefore, rectifiers must be used to obtain DC power from AC power, as in the case of network routers, telephones, etc.

④ Computers

In a home or commercial computer, the power supply must convert the line power (120 V or 220 V AC) to the required DC voltage. This conversion process is accomplished by a built-in rectifier that allows the computer to work efficiently. 


4. What is the application of inverter?

Rectification is the process of converting AC power to Inversion is the process of converting DC power to AC power. It is widely used in renewable energy power devices (such as solar panels and wind turbines), and in controllers for electric and hybrid vehicles.

① Renewable energy power supply units

In renewable energy power installations such as solar panels or wind turbines, the electricity generated is direct current. This power is converted to alternating current (AC) and then can be transmitted or stored. The energy storage inverter is a key component in this process as it can thus provide clean renewable energy. Some of the most scenario applications are power inverter for home backup.

② Controllers for electric and hybrid vehicles

Controllers for electric and hybrid vehicles need to convert DC power stored in batteries to AC power to drive electric motors. The inverter is an integral part of this conversion process. 


5. 5 major differences between inverter vs rectifier

The main difference between inverter vs rectifier is that they convert different types of current. In addition, rectifiers require the use of a transformer to control the voltage and transfer the power to the device that needs to use it, whereas inverters are tasked with converting the power stored in batteries into the required AC power and transferring it outwards through their output ports.

Next we summarize the difference between inverter vs rectifier:

  • The working principle of inverter vs rectifier: The working principle of rectifier is to convert AC power to DC power, while inverter is to convert DC power to AC power.
  • Application of inverter vs rectifier: Rectifiers are mainly used in electric power systems, electrical equipment and other occasions that require DC power supply, while inverters have a wide range of applications, including thyristor-controlled inverters, inverter power supply and other industries.
  • The working state of inverter vs rectifier: When the rectifier is working, the current direction is always the same, and the output is positive current; while the output current direction of the inverter can be reversed, and its output is alternating current, which has the characteristics of direction and frequency.
  • The control mode of inverter vs rectifier: The control mode of inverter vs rectifier is also different, the control mode of rectifier is mainly voltage and current control, etc., while the control mode of inverter is various, mainly PWM modulation, SPWM modulation and SVPWM modulation and other technologies.
  • Electronic components of inverter vs rectifier: The main components used in rectifiers are semiconductor devices, such as diodes, while inverters use more complex electronic components and circuits, such as MOSFETs and IGBTs.


In short, inverter vs rectifier have different roles, but both play a vital role in the operation of modern electronic equipment. If you are interested in energy storage inverter, you can take a look at the inverter buying guide, as well as the Tycorun pure sine wave inverter - 1000w inverter, 3000w inverter here.


Rectifier and inverter technology is one of the most important technologies in modern circuits and power systems, and is widely used in electrification, renewable energy power supply units and automotive controllers. Rectifiers are an essential technology for a number of devices that require the use of DC power sources, while comparing inverter and rectifier, inverters have become an important part of renewable energy power systems.


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