# negative current, positive voltage, negative wattage, reactive power

• posted
When looking at graphed waves of reactive power, whats going on when
you have negative current and positive voltage, or vice versa? what
would be negative wattage? wattage is always positive because of
product of same sign current and voltage, no power usage/infinite
resistance? power flowing back into the supply, with it voltage, or
against voltage?
• posted
it is not possible when voltage and current is proportinality..it means voltage is positive current also positive
• posted
In article , snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:
When the current from the source is the same sign as the voltage from the source, power is flowing from the source to the load. When the signs are different, power is flowing from the load to the source. That will happen with reactive loads. Energy will be stored in the reactive element during part of the cycle and some will be returned during another part of the cycle. This means that extra current flows without actually delivering power that is dissipated by the load to do something useful. That is why volt-amperes are not the same as watts.
Bill
• posted
When you're reading graphs, all the pos/neg excursions show you is voltage and its relationship to whatever the reference may be, usually ground. From that you get flow direction, etc.. All voltage values have to be seen as positive. Or I suppose you could look at it as showing a negative E and a neg I, resulting in a positive.
Then again, keep in mind that you often don't work with the peak voltages, but with the averages or rms, etc..
Gee, with negative wattage and a rectifier we could make some pretty cheap air conditioners, couldn't we?
• posted
When the voltage is positive and the current negative the power is negative. There is no problem. The graphs are of instantaneous power -not the real and reactive power - which are averages over the cycle.
If the load is purely resistive, the product of instantaneous voltage and current is always positive. The average power over a cycle will be Vrms*Irms and this is what we really are looking at when considering real or reactive concepts in steady state AC.
If the load is purely reactive (inductive or capacitive) , then for half of the cycle, the power in is positive and for the other half it is negative. That is energy is sent to the load for half the cycle and is returned to the source for half a cycle- average energy and power over the cycle is 0.
If the load is a mix, then for part of the cycle the instantaneous power is positive and for part of it - it is negative. The power can be considered as having a variable part superimposed on a constant part. The constant part is the real or average power and the variable part. The constant part will be less than for a purely resistive load. The reactive Volt amps is a way of expressing a measure of the variable part.
Don Kelly
• posted
So true. A way I found to explain the concept is working out the energy flow direction, (using my 2 fingers and thumb representing electric field, magnetic field and resultant energy flow AND a whiteboard or blackboard) by way of the Poynting vector. It is then clear which direction the energy is flowing, how much is flowing...and when it is flowing. My arm usually aches a bit after I unknot it though :(
• posted
But, in dealing with circuit theory, which is a quasi-static approximation to field theory, you are only dealing with sources and R,L, C elements and don't need to even consider Poynting or even the electric and magnetic fields per se(replaced by the behaviour, in electric terms, of L and C)

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