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EM 2.

Electric Currents Electrical Conduction in Metals A solid metal consist of ions and free mobile electrons in a crystal lattice. Without voltage difference, the motion of electrons is random (go to any direction), it is called thermal motion. And there is NO net displacement of the electrons, thus no current. With voltage difference, the electrons have a net movement in the direction from lower potential to higher potential, and that velocity produced by potential difference is called “drift velocity”. Of course, the electrons still have the thermal motion, but it now have a net movement, and thus charge flows, and thus current. (the speed for thermal motion is much higher than the drift velocity.)

The resistance of a piece of metal is due to collisions between the free electrons and the metal ions. During a collision, some of the kinetic energy possessed by the electron can be transferred to the ion. Therefore, resistance causes the temperature to increase, electrical energy converted into thermal energy (internal energy). In higher temperature, the lattice vibrations increases, and ions vibrates more vigorously, when electrons hits the ions, lose more energy, and thus the resistance of a piece of metal should increase with temperature. (Note: the resistance of semi-conductors (e.g. silicon and germanium) decreases with temperature) Electrical Current Electrical Current is the flow if charge per unit time.

A voltmeter gives us the amount of energy lost by each unit charge between the two points to which the voltmeter is connected. Resistance depends on . Q is charge in Coulomb C. Resistance Units of resistance VA-1 or Ohms. the current is due to the movement of ions. The resistance of a voltmeter must be high compared with other components in the circuit being investigated. A voltmeter is always connected in parallel with other components. An ammeter measures the rate of flow of charge. The unit of current is the Ampere. A current in a metal is due to the movement of electrons. An ammeter is always connected in series with other components. . The resistance of an ammeter must be low compared with other components in the circuit being investigated. t is time in Second s. Current is measured using an ammeter. V =E/Q To measure voltage we use a voltmeter. In a conducting solution. 1V means 1JC-1. A. Potential Difference Potential difference between two points is the electrical energy converted to other form of energy per unit charge.I =Q/t I is current in Ampere A. The unit of voltage is the volt.

units Ohm’s Law m. the cross-sectional area of the piece of metal. For a metal conductor at constant temperature. Current in Series Circuits The current is the same at all points in a series circuit.i) ii) iii) the length of the piece of metal. the current flowing through it is directly proportional to the voltage across it. Voltages in Series Circuits . . Resistivity of the metal. Since charges has no else where to flow. A the type of metal.

Voltage across R1 is V1 V1 = IR1 similarly. I. Energy lost by each Coulomb of charge moving from A to B is V1.) Resistors in Series A B In circuit A The current through all the resistors is the same. Energy lost by each Coulomb of charge moving from B to C is V2. V2 = IR2 V3 = IR3 V1 + V2 + V3 = I(R1 +R2 +R3) =IV In circuit B V = IRE Combining these two gives IRE = IR1 + IR2 + IR3 . (Note: this statement does not depend on what the components are. total amount of energy lost by each Coulomb of charge from A to D = V1 + V2 + V3 (= V). The total voltage across components connected in series is the sum of the voltages across each component. Energy lost by each Coulomb of charge moving from C to D is V3. including battery in opposite direction.Consider the simple series circuit above.

RE = R 1 + R2 + R3 Currents in Parallel Circuits If the three current I1. The total current flowing towards a junction in a circuit is equal to the total current flowing away from that junction. Voltage across Components in Parallel All points inside each dotted ellipse have the same potential. So the three voltmeters are measuring the same voltage. Resistors in Parallel . and thus no dissipation in energy . I2 and I are measured it is found that I1 + I2 = I This result is called Kirchhoff’s current law.(if no internal resistance in battery) Components connected in parallel with each other all have the same voltage. Because the wires have no resistance.

same current I. let V1 be the voltage across R1 and V2 the voltage across R2. Resistor R1 : V1 = I R1 Resistor R2 : V2 = I R2 The ratio: . Potential Dividers In the circuit shown below.A B In circuit A Voltage across all the resistors is the same. Circuit in series. I= I1 + I 2 + I 3 = V(1/R1+1/R2+1/R3) In circuit B I = V/RE Combining these two gives V/RE = V/R1 + V/R2 + V/R3 So. V. The current through R1 is I1 I1 = V/R1 similarly. I2 = V/R2 I3 = V/R3 Also.

(A variable resistor can also be called a rheostat. The maximum resistance of the variable resistor is 100 . the voltmeter will read 6V (battery voltage(if no internal resistance)). . sliding contact S is moved to B? It would be like this.) Variable Resistors i) Rotating variable resistor (internal view) ii) Linear variable resistor Using Variable Resistors Consider the circuit below. Case 1. A variable potential divider can be made using all three connections of a variable resistor.This type of circuit is often called potential dividers. sliding contact S is moved to A. Case 2.

Consider the simple circuit shown below. In the following circuits. the result is called as the terminal potential difference of the battery. The electrical energy given to each Coulomb of charge is called the emf. Electrical Power and Energy Any component which possesses resistance will convert electrical energy into thermal energy.Voltmeter reads 3V. of the . battery. Power P = VI P = V2 /R P = I2 R E=Pt The Internal Resistance of a Battery A battery converts chemical energy into electrical energy. the voltmeter is ideal infinite resistance . When the voltage of a battery is measured.

The terminal potential difference is only equal to the emf of the battery if the current flowing through the battery is zero. Therefore. where R is the external resistance. The terminal p. If we measure the terminal p. The energy supplied to each Coulomb of charge by the chemical reactions in the battery is . In a complete circuit with current. r. The resistor. V = IR. there is a drop in voltage. Also. A more complete symbol to represent a battery is shown below.d. due to the internal resistance. There exists internal resistance inside a battery. represents the internal resistance of the battery. also. we have .In open circuit(not a complete circuit).d. of the battery. of a battery. the result is the emf of the battery. energy also drawn by that internal resistance.