Series and Parallel Circuits

Four Examples of Parallel Circuits 1

Series and parallel circuits are two basic arrangements of the source and loads. Series and parallel circuits are often combined to form complex circuits that can be understood on the basis of simpler series and parallel arrangements.  Series Circuits A series connection is one with a single path. A series circuit has …

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Power and Watt’s Law

Watt Law

When there is current through a resistance, electrical energy is converted to heat or other forms of energy such as light. A common example of this is the incandescent light bulb that becomes too hot to touch when it has been on for a short time. The current through the …

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Resistance and Ohm’s Law

Cutaway View of a Carbon-Composition Resistor

With the exception of a special class of materials called superconductors, all materials have resistance, which is the opposition to current. Conductors are generally metallic materials with low resistance, whereas insulators are materials with high resistance. When there is current through a resistive material, heat is produced by the collisions …

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Electrical Current: Definition & Formula

Complete DC Circuit

The original idea of current was based on Benjamin Franklin’s belief that electricity was an unseen substance that moved from positive to negative. Conventional current is defined based on this original assumption of positive to negative. The original definition is widely used, although there is another definition of current called electron flow. Electrons move …

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Nuclear Energy Environmental Impact

The ITER Tokamak Fusion Reactor

Environmental Concerns The environmental concerns associated with nuclear reactors are very different than with fossil fuel–burning power plants. On the positive side, reactors do not emit greenhouse gases or other atmospheric pollutants. They also use significantly less fuel in terms of weight than coal-fired plants. Reactors for electricity production have …

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How Does Nuclear Energy Work

Diagram of a Pressurized Water Reactor

Nuclear Energy Nuclear energy derives its power from the enormous amount of stored binding energy in the nucleus of the atom, which is the energy that holds the nucleus of the atom together. By tapping this energy, a substance such as water is heated and converted to steam to drive …

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