Galvanic Isolation and 3 Types of Galvanic Isolators [With Advantages and Disadvantages]

Galvanic isolation is the process of separating different sections of electrical circuits for stopping current flow while allowing the required amount of information to flow through these sections.

Galvanic isolation is used in cases where two or more circuits having different ground should communicate with each other. Let’s discuss three types of Galvanic Isolation methods:

Inductive or Magnetic Isolation

Inductive or Magnetic isolation utilized digital modulation for converting the signals of the circuit into pulses at the isolation boundary.


  1. Higher data rate
  2. Smaller size


  1. Power consumption increases with data transfer rate
  2. Sensitive to the electromagnetic field

Capacitive Isolation

High data rates at lower power consumption.


Not sensitive to fields
High Speed
Lower Power Consumption
Compact size


Degradation of lower frequency performance

Optocoupler Galvanic Isolation

Optocoupler or Optoisolator is the most popular component for isolating circuits. The optocoupler essentially contains an LED and a phototransistor. The light produced in LED is detected by the phototransistor.



  1. Good for low-speed communications
  2. Works well with digital circuits
  3. Cost effective method


  1. Low-speed device
  2. Nonlinear for most analog measurements
  3. Slow response time
  4. Not recommended for high-speed applications
  5. Performance change with the lifetime

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