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How is it possible to safely disconnect/turn off an inductor that has current through it without causing a huge backward voltage? Even dropping from a circuit with low current, it the current will still be going from finite to 0, in a very small space of time (how would you calculate this time?), causing a big voltage spike. How can inductors possibly be safe if disconnecting them is so dangerous?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Disconnecting from where? \$\endgroup\$ – Eugene Sh. Feb 26 '18 at 21:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ Without details, we cannot give you an answer. \$\endgroup\$ – Sparky256 Feb 26 '18 at 22:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ You don't normally disconnect components from a circuit while it's operating, so their safety in doing this is irrelevant. \$\endgroup\$ – Finbarr Feb 26 '18 at 22:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Finbarr Are you familiar with switches or buttons? Disconnecting components from active circuits is routine. I would wonder how you stop anything from operating otherwise, let alone changing its state. \$\endgroup\$ – Samuel Feb 27 '18 at 22:08
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You use a flyback diode.

Knowing the name, you can search regarding your specific application, such as for a relay.

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