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This is an experiment report that illustrates the concept of Ohmic resistance and the mathematical relationships involved in Ohm's Law.

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Aim:

To investigate the relationship between potential difference and current for a

resistor in order to verify Ohm’s Law.

Equipment:

6 x insulated crocodile-clip electrical wires

Ammeter

Milliameter A

Volt meter

Variable (2-12) V DC power supply 10Ω

10Ω resistor

V

Procedure:

1. The circuit was set up as shown in diagram 1.

2. The power supply was set to read 0V and the voltage and current were read from

the volt meter and ammeter.

3. Step 2 was repeated for the 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12 volt settings on the power supply.

If the current was too small to read accurately, the range on the ammeter was

adjusted.

Results:

Table 1 – Relationship Between Potential Difference and Current

Voltage intervals on Potential Difference (V) Current (A)

power supply Volt meter reading Ammeter reading

0 0 0

2 2 0.22

4 4 0.35

6 5.6 0.5

8 7.5 0.65

10 9.5 0.8

12 11.5 1

Interpretation of Results:

Graph 1 - Ohmic Resistance

14

Potential Difference (V) 12

10 y = 11.5x

8 V= RxI

6 R = 11.5

4

2

0

0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2

Current (I)

A straight line graph was drawn from the data collected from the experiment,

which was expected.

y mx

rise

Graph12- –Ohmic

Graph Resistance

Calculating Resistance m

14 run

Potential Difference (V)

12

Points taken 8

10 y = 11.5x

from line of m

8 V= RxI best fit 0.7

(0.7,8)

6 R = 11.5

11.4 m

4

2

y 11.4 x

0

0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2

Current (I)

V const. I

V const. 11.4

According to Ohm’s law, R

.

I

Therefore, the resistance could be found V 11.4 I

from the gradient of the graph.

The point (0,0) is a legitimate point on the graph because, according to the data

gained from the experiment, when there was no potential difference, there was no current.

Ohm’s law states that voltage is directly proportional to current:

V I Therefore V was plotted against I so the resistance could be

found by calculating the gradient.

V R I

V R I

V

R

I

y m x

Graph 2 - Prediction of graph for a higher value of resistance Graph 3 - Prediction of graph for a lower value of resistance

14 14

Potential Difference (V)

12 12

10 10

8 8

6 6

4 4

2 2

0 0

0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2

Current (I) Current (I)

A higher resistance would result in a straight line graph with a higher gradient

when potential difference is graphed against current. Therefore a lower resistance would

result in a straight line graph with a lower gradient.

V

Resistance is measured in ohms (Ω). However, from the formula R , the

-1 I

equivalent units in terms of volts and amps was found to be VA (volts per amp).

Conclusion:

Ohm’s law states that voltage is directly proportional to current, provided that the

temperature remains constant. The straight line graph that could be drawn from the data

showed the mathematical relationship ( V R I ) that exists between potential difference

and current. Therefore Ohm’s law was verified.

Limitations:

Ohm’s law is only valid as long as the temperature of the circuit remains constant.

Resistance means friction, which causes heat, particularly with a resistor with such a low

resistance as 10Ω. There was a high current travelling through the resistor, so there would

have been some temperature increase with each voltage interval that was tested. As a

straight line graph was obtained from the data, no significant increase in temperature was

noticeable (otherwise the graph would have been curved). However, if this experiment

was to be repeated, a resistor with a higher value for resistance (~200Ω–300Ω) would be

used instead to minimise the increase in temperature as a result of resistance.

Before each reading was taken from either the ammeter or volt meter, the meter

was inspected to make sure that the arrow was sitting exactly on the “0” mark.

Each of the meters also carried a percentage error of half a scale division. The volt

meter measured up to 15V with one line for every half volt. So, the volt readings could

have been ±0.25V out. The ammeter measured up to 3Amps with one line for every 0.2V.

So, the readings could have been ±0.1Amps out. For the first few readings the current

was so small on the ammeter that ±0.1Amps error made quite a large difference so a

milliammeter was used to give a more accurate reading.

Resistors come with a percentage tolerance value. The 10Ω resistor that was used

in the experiment had a ±5% tolerance value. This means that it could have deviated

±0.5Ω from the 10Ω it claimed to be. From the experiment, the resistance of the resistor

was found to be 11.4Ω – 0.9Ω outside of the percent tolerance range. This could have

been due to any of the issues discussed above.

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