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Richard Zhao


Circuit w/
1st Light

Circuit w/
2nd Light

Series w/
Both Lights

Parallel w/
Both Lights








Circuits Lab


Circuit w/ 1st Light: We measured the voltage to be 5.5V once we
turned the dial to read at ranges of 20V. In
order to find out voltage, we put the alligator
clips onto the opposite ends of the lightbulb
and onto the battery. From there, we put the
voltmeter ends to the ends of the battery.
This allowed us to measure the difference in
potential between the two which gave us
voltage. In order to determine amps, we
made the multimeter part of the circuit. We
attached alligator clips that connected the
light bulb to the battery and the lightbulb to
Figure 1: Finding voltage for 1
the multimeter. We then connected the end
of the multimeter to the battery. Amps were
determined to be .24 when we turned the dial to 10.To find
resistance, the multimeter was attached directly to both ends of the
lightbulb. We were able to determine resistance by turning the
range to 200 ohms. We found that the resistance was then 3.1

Figure 2: Finding current
for 1 light

The voltage was 5. However. we essentially set the circuit up the same way as the first 2. in the real world this isn’t possible. We then found current to be the same as the 1st. However. This increase of resistance will decrease current.16 amps. We found out voltage the same way as before. similar to the other 3. Circuit w/ Both Lights in Parallel: In order to wire this circuit. This was Figure 3: Finding resistance between 2 lightbulbs in series expected because we were still measuring the difference in potential across the entire circuit which should have more or less remained the same. Circuit w/Both Lights in Series: Lighting this circuit in series was essentially the same as the first 2 circuits.Circuit w/ 2nd Light: This lightbulb turned out to be very similar to the first one we used. This is because the current will decrease when he flows across subsequent resistors.8 ohms. we would get different results). When we measured the voltage. this was expected as the voltage should in theory remain the same.lower than the previous 2. it was close to the same as the others. except that we attached a 2nd pair of alligator clips from the first lightbulb to the second lightbulb.expected because it is essentially adding more cars in a 1 lane freeway. and got 5.24. Again. so it was expected that there would be little difference between this circuit and the first. except that we connected a second light between the first light and the alligator clip or multimeter. Current was measured to be . the main difference was that we simply attached the lightbulbs together first before attaching to the battery or multi-meter(see figure 3). Basically it was identical to the previous 2. Resistance was 2. . Figure 4: Measuring resistance across 2 lightbulbs in parallel . 5. (had we measured between a select resistors instead of the entire circuit.58V.21.52V.

5% Expected Resistance for Series w/ Both Lights . a parallel circuit is like adding more lanes in a freeway. Thus.9 Ω . since the current(I) increased.8 Ω Percent Error = ¿ 2. greater than the previous 3 circuits.5 =2 2. In a sense.9 Ω .2 4 Observed: 2.1−22.45 amps.5% error Expected resistance for 2nd circuit 5. Parallel circuits have an increase in current because more electricity can flow in the circuit in the same amount of time. R(resistance) must decrease. Looking at the equation V =IR . Analysis: Expected resistance for 1st circuit = Voltage / Current Figure 5: Measuring current for 2 lightbulbs in parallel 5.5 =22.9 ∨¿ 100 22. Resistance was measured to be 2.0 ohms The resistance was expected to be lower than the other 3 because current increased and the voltage stayed constant. we have a higher current. electricity can flow through any one of them which increase the total flow.9 22.9 = 86. Since there are more lanes.8−2 2.Current was measured to be .1 Ω Percent Error = ∗100 |3.9 | = 86.24 Observed: 3.

the alligator clips we used could have been imperfect conductors in the first place which would have led to less current flow than expected. as in the real world it’s impossible to get idea and perfect readings.8−3 34.0−11.0 Ω Percent Error = ∗100 |2. The wires themselves were slight resistors.8 Ω Percent Error = 4. For example.68 1 1.4 5 = 11. The components we used were inherently imperfect which contributed to our percent error. Questions: Scenarios to consider: Figure 6: Measuring voltage across 1 resistor . The wires connecting the lightbulbs could also have been impure and not have been a perfect conductor.58 Ω Observed: 2. The lightbulbs might also have impacted the accuracy of our data.2% Expected Resistance for Parallel w/ Both Lights 5.9% This seemed about right for a percent error for the circuits. The voltmeter could also have been slightly inaccurate in readings as we were told that their resistance readings could be off at times.58 . The usage of a measuring tool like a multimeter also uses energy in the circuit.9 ∗100 |4.9 Ω Observed: 4.5.68 | = 82. Dirty alligator pins and the subsequent contact would in theory yield inaccurate results. lowering voltage and affecting readings.1 6 = 34.9 | = 86.21 .

When we actually tried this. 6b. if we wire 3 lightbulbs in series. we would have to set up 3 lightbulbs in a parallel twice and connect those 2 .8V for only 1 resistor. we measured 1.6a.5 times greater. That is. Since the voltmeter measures differences in potential between the two sides. then the voltage would be split amongst the 3 lightbulbs(resistors). we would have to set up a circuit with 3 lightbulbs in a series and only measure the voltage difference between 1 resistor. In order to make the ammeter read 1. In order to have the voltmeter measure roughly one-third the value of the voltage.5V. which was around a third of 5. all we have to do is measure the difference between 1 resistor.

separate circuits in series. Figure 7: Battery of 10V initial . That is. then make that same circuit again. we would have to connect 3 lightbulbs in parallel. We would then connect those 2 circuits in series.