Autotransformers are electrical transformers with a single winding. The winding has at least three electrical terminals, which provide a fraction of the primary voltage across a secondary load. The connections may also be reversed to provide a step-up in voltage. The voltage may also be adjusted by half the voltage-increment between taps.
Autotransformers offer the advantage of reduced size, weight, and cost when compared with equivalent isolation transformers. This advantage is reduced when the voltage transformation is very large. Given these limitations, autotransformers can be used effectively when electrical isolation between primary and secondary loads is not required.
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