estimate transformer losses with frequency

Thread Starter


Joined Jun 24, 2011
Hi all,

My question is somewhat fundamental:

If i take a regular step down transformer, say 120VAC on the input, 12VAC, 1A at the output, designed for 50/60 hz and i feed it a 5v p2p signal from a voltage generator into the secondary winding and i am getting 50v 2p2 at the primary around 50hz-1000hz region.

However, I've noticed that as i go higher in frequencies, the voltage at the output increases.

My question is: how can i roughly estimate the power loss as a function of frequency ?

(My motivation behind this type of tinkering is building a low cost, variable frequency high voltage AC signal, so i want to know how much power will i be able to produce at the output, I intend to use a salvaged microwave transformer fed from an audio amplifier which is fed from a signal generator ).

If you have any reservations regarding this type of configuration, I would appreciate your feedback.



Joined Jan 10, 2012
Power loss will be a product of inter winding capacitance, wire resistance and core loss. If you had all of this information, you could calculate the loss at your frequency of interest. I imagine loss would be significant, and heating could be an issue. If I were to try to build a high frequency high voltage signal, I wound't waste any time fooling around with a MOT.