Kirchoff's Current Law (KCL) deals with the currents flowing into and out of a

given node. KCL states that the sum of all currents at a node must equal zero. This is
illustrated in Figure 2.

Figure 2: An example of KCL
The equation obtained by KCL for the node shown in Fig. 2 is
~ Ì 2
~ Ì3
= 0 . (2)
Ìn the case of KCL the passive sign convention deals with the direction of currents with
respect to the node. Currents entering the node must have opposite signs as those exiting
the node. The passive sign convention with respect to KVL can also be applied to KCL.
On many schematics the polarities of resistors are already assigned, so the directions of
the currents should be assigned such that the current is entering the positive terminal.
This will simplify later calculations.
There are several useful relationships between the sine and cosine functions, and uniform circular rotation.
Neither the sine nor the cosine has a beginning or an end; both are periodic functions. A kind of
'start'/'finish' relationship is a description of one period of the sinusoid; the remainder of the function is a
displaced repetition of that period. A geometrical description of various sinusoid relationships is drawn
below. Ìt is formally premature to characterize the figure as representing either a sine or a cosine; it could
be either. However because the sine is zero when its argument is zero (or an odd multiple of p) it is the
sine that would ordinarily be drawn as shown. The cosine is 1 when its argument is zero (or an even
multiple of p), and ordinarily it would be drawn with that value at the origin. The difference between a sine
and cosine drawing is a displacement of 1/4 the period. Thus the drawing could represent cos(wt - 4t/T),
although as noted ordinarily the axis would be shifted to cancel the constant in the argument.
With AC analysis, one specifes the stimulus for the circuit and computes the sinusoidal steady-state response. The stimulus may
consist of signals on several sources, but they must all be sinusoidal and
have the same frequency. For example, simulating a dierential amplifer often involves applying two sinusoidal sources to the
one shifted 180
from the other. Ìt is not possible to simulate a
mixer because for mixers the two input signals must be at dierent
Prior to performing the AC analysis, the circuit is linearized. Thus,
the absolute magnitude of the stimulus looses some of it signifcance.


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