This chapter builds on the earlier introduction to alternating current (AC) and segues into a comparison between AC and direct current (DC). This comparison highlights the complexity of AC as compared with DC due to the use of complex numbers and vectors for complete representation of AC entities and parameters. In this chapter, the reader is afforded the opportunity to appreciate how the complexity of AC is amplified by three-phase AC consideration in more common, industrial, and commercial applications. In an effort to allow readers ample opportunity to explore and learn basic, single- and three-phase AC principles and mathematical computations, various single- and three-phase AC functions, equations, and mathematical techniques are explored; reinforced by examples and self-assessment problems. The depth to which the readers may endeavor to explore the AC topics in this chapter depends on their need, appetite, and aptitude.

Due to the practical applications of the process of electrodeposition, in the coatings industry – and the innate relationship between electrodeposition and electricity – this process is defined and illustrated through equations and practical numerical examples in this chapter. Furthermore, this chapter provides the reader an introduction to AC electrical transformers of various types; i.e. single-phase and three-phase transformers. Of course, similar to other topics in this text, the concepts, principles, equations, and applications in this chapter are illustrated with, analogies, numerical examples and end-of-the-chapter problems. All in all, this chapter provides an adequate introduction to AC and prepares the reader for intermediate and advanced levels of study of AC concepts.