A quick history of Amorphous Transformers

In this blog post, we are going to be talking about the Amorphous Core and the history of Amorphous Core Transformers. Our new Bowers Energy Saving Transformer (B.E.S.T) is an alternative to conventional distribution transformers which uses an Amorphous Core. It increases energy efficiency efforts by saving on energy losses and reducing CO2 waste, whilst also decreasing total ownership costs over the 25-30 years in service.

So, what exactly is an Amorphous Core?

amorphous definition

We are talking about Amorphous core steel which is a major component of any transformer.

To prevent crystallisation, the liquid state cools quickly and creates Amorphous material. The non-crystallisation atomic structure is created when the atoms are fast frozen, this does not give the atoms time to arrange themselves into an ordered structure. The material’s disordered structure makes it extremely efficient in transformer applications and more resistant to corrosion and wear.

You can read more about the difference between Amorphous Core and our standard CRGO Core transformers.

History of Amorphous Transformers: Timeline

1957 – Amorphous metals were first created at Caltech by Pol Duwez. By cooling the alloy (Au80Si20) in under a fraction of a second, the metal was created. This prevented the metal from crystallising like a typical metal, giving it a unique amorphous structure.

1969 – An alloy of 77.5% palladium, 6% copper, and 16.5% silicon was found to have a critical cooling rate between 100 to 1000 K/s.


1976 – C. Graham and H. Liebermann made amorphous metals suitable for commercialisation. They used a supercooled fast-spinning wheel to create bulk quantities of amorphous metal suitable for low-loss power distribution transformers, commercialized under the name Metglas.

1979 – Production of the first Amorphous Transformer happened. The University of Texas Institute of Technology Solar Photovoltaic/Thermal Residence Experiment commissioned the 15kVA-rated Transformer.

The 1990s – With cooling rates as low as one Kevin per second, new alloys were developed. By simple casting into metallic moulds, the cooling rates were developed.


2004 – Researchers succeeded in bulk manufacturing amorphous steel, paving the way for wider commercialisation of the material.

2015 – The introduction of Eco Regulation 548/2014 which set out a tightened requirement for load-losses on Transformers to help improve energy efficiency, and environmental compatibility and reduce CO2 emissions. This became known as the Tier 1 requirements.

2021 – The minimum energy performance standards for transformers increased as part of there Eco Regulation’s new Tier 2 requirements. The Amorphous transformer far exceeds the minimum load losses required for the Eco Regulation outlined in the Tier 2 update.

2022 – Bowers Electricals launches their Amorphous Core Transformer, the Bowers Energy Saving Transformer or B.E.S.T for short, with the lowest losses available.

history of amorphous core transformers

Posted on: 14.10.2022
Posted in: Transformers
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