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Topic9RC_RLandLCCircuits

# Topic9RC_RLandLCCircuits

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Physics electromagnetic topic, electric and eletronic, physics for higher learning, electromagnietic induction, direct current, magnetic flux, circuit analysis
Physics electromagnetic topic, electric and eletronic, physics for higher learning, electromagnietic induction, direct current, magnetic flux, circuit analysis

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06/28/2015

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INTRODUCTION
In Topic 5, we analysed direct current circuits in which the current is constant. However, in direct current circuits containing capacitors, inductors or both, the current is always in the same direction, but its value may vary with time. In this topic, we will discuss time-varying currents during the charging and discharging of a capacitor in RC, RL and LC circuits.
RC CIRCUIT
In Topic 3, we covered the basic concepts of a capacitor. In this section, we will discuss the charging and discharging of a capacitor in an RC circuit. An
RC
circuit consists of a battery (of emf
E
) connected in series with a capacitor C and a resistor R through a switch S. See Figure 9.1
Figure 9.1
: RC circuit

9.1
TTooppiicc

99

RC,

RL

and

LC

Circuits

LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this topic, you should be able to:1.

Apply Kirchoff’s Law to analyse the behaviour of the RC and RL circuits quantitatively; 2.

Solve related problems in RC and RL circuits; 3.

Explain what is meant by the time-constant; and 4.

Explain qualitatively how electrical oscillations are generated across an LC circuit.

TOPIC 9 RC, RL AND LC CIRCUITS
138
CHARGING A CAPACITOR
Initially there is no charge on the capacitor. To charge the capacitor, we close the switch to position a. Charges begin to flow between the capacitor plates and therefore current exists in the circuit until the capacitor is fully charged. We wish to investigate how the charge,
q
, the potential difference across the capacitor,
v
, and the current,
i
, in the circuit vary with time. By applying Kirchoff’s loop rule, we obtain: 0
=
qiR E
(9.1) Eq. 9.1 above has two variables
i
and
q
which are related by Equation 9.1
dt dqi
=
Substituting this for
i
in Equation 9.1 and rearranging gives
dq E qdt R R
=
(9.2) This is a differential equation that describes how the charge
q
on the capacitor varies with time
. To solve the equation, we first rearrange the equation by  placing terms involving q on one side and those involving t on the other side: 1
dqdt q CE R
= −
(9.2a)  Next we integrate both sides of the equation from the moment the switch is closed at 0
=
to an arbitrary time
some instant later. Remember that 0
=
q
at 0
=
and let the charge equal
q
at time
.
0
1
qoe
dqdt q CE Rq CE lnCE Rq CE logCE R
= −= −= −

9.2

TOPIC 9 RC, RL AND LC CIRCUITS

139
From the last equation, the amount of charge on the plate at time
is
( ) ( )
11
t RC t Ro
q CE e q e
= − =
(9.3) where the exponent
e
has the value of 2.718, and
0
q CE
=
is the maximum charge on the capacitor. Figure 9.2 shows the graph of this expression, which indicates that the charge is 0
=
q
when
0
=
and increases gradually toward the equilibrium value of
CE q
o
=
as
approaches infinity. The quantity
RC
that appears in the exponential in Equation 9.3 is known as the time constant
τ
of the RC circuit.
Figure 9.2:
The variation of charge
q
with time
t
during the charging process.
(9.4) The time constant is measured in seconds and represents the time taken for the capacitor to accumulate 63.2% of its equilibrium value
o
q
. If
τ
large, it takes a long time for the capacitor to reach the equilibrium value. If
τ
is small, the capacitor reaches the equilibrium value rapidly. The potential difference across the capacitor
v
is given by
( ) ( )
11
t o
qv e E e
τ τ
= =
(9.5)
RC
=
τ