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A power conditioner is an electrical component designed to improve the quality of power supplied to a computer component by supplying voltage at the level that allows that component to operate properly. Although technically there is no single correct definition for a power conditioner, it is often associated with a voltage regulator, which improves the quality of power through transient impulse protection, power factor correction or noise suppression.
A power conditioner has the ability to regulate and clean AC power by delivering dynamic power adjustments and removing spikes, surges, noise, sags and frequency irregularities, which may damage or adversely affect the performance of any equipment load.
Power conditioning is recognized by the IEEE, NEMA and other standards. Power conditioners are used by both individual users and large corporations.
A power conditioner may also be known as a power line conditioner or a line conditioner.
Two of the various types of power conditioners are alternating current (AC) power conditioners and power line conditioners. AC power conditioners deliver clean AC power to their dedicated electrical gear. These have 10 or more outlets or repositories for surge protection and noise filtering, and are often found in homes and offices. Power line conditioners absorb and modify power and should be designed for the needs of specific components. During power storms or other main power line failures when voltage spikes are prevalent, surge protection shuts off the power source to protect electronic equipment.
Well-designed power conditioners include internal filter banks. This feature removes cross-talk between devices.
Power conditioners vary in size and features. Some supply nominal voltage regulations, while others provide protection against an array of power quality issues. A small device may fit on a printed circuit board, while a large device could safeguard a manufacturing plant.