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CIRCUIT FUNDAMENTALS

VOLTAGE AND CURRENT

The chemical activity of the battery will absorb the electrons at the positive terminal and will maintain a steady
supply of electrons at the negative terminal.

Current  directed flow of charge I = Q/t 1 Ampere = 1 coulomb/second

Voltage  work per unit charge V = E/Q 1 Volt = 1 joule/coulomb

Power  work done in a given amount of time P = E/t 1 Watt = 1 joule/second

♦ Charge – force that causes two particles to be attracted to or repelled from each other

♦ Charge of an electron --- 1.6 x 10-19 coulombs;

o The coulomb is the charge through any cross section of a conductor in one second by an
unvarying current of one ampere.

o Practically, one coulomb is about the charge through a 100-W electric lamp.

RESISTANCE
R = ρ L/A (at constant temperature)
where ρ = resistivity
L = length
A = cross-sectional area
♦ Volume = area x length

♦ Volume resistivity – resistance of a specified volume of an element or compound

♦ Specific resistance – resistance offered by a unit cube of a material

R = ρ L/A R = ρ L/A

= ρ (V/A)/A = ρ L/(V/L)

R = ρ V/A2 R = ρ L2/V

CONDUCTOR SIZES
♦ mil = one-thousandth of an inch

By definition,
a wire with a diameter of 1 mil has an area of 1 circular mil (CM), as shown

♦ circular mil = unit of area found by squaring the diameter in mils


= cross sectional area of a circle whose diameter is 1 mil

One square mil was superimposed on the 1-CM area of the figure above to clearly show that the square mil has a
larger surface area than the circular mil.

Table 1.0 RESISTIVITY RATINGS OF SOME COMMON ELEMENTS (20°C)

Element Resistivity
Ω-CM /ft Ω-cm
Silver 9.90 1.645 x 10-6
Copper 10.37 1.723 x 10-6
Gold 14.70 2.443 x 10-6
Aluminum 17.00 2.825 x 10-6
Iron 74.00 12.299 x 10-6
Carbon 2.1x104 3.5 x 10-3
TEMPERATURE EFFECTS
♦ The resistance of most materials used in electrical systems, increases with an increase
in temperature.

♦ Temperature coefficient of resistance


– rating which indicates that resistance varies with temperature
– ohmic change per degree per ohm at some specified temperature

The temperature at which


all molecular motion
ceases; _273.15°C or 0°K .

R1/ R2 = (T+t1) /(T+t2) α t1 = 1/(T+t1) ∆t = t2-t1

R2/ R1 = 1+α t1(∆t)

T – inferred absolute temperature; the temperature through which a straight-line approximation for the actual resistance-
versus-temperature curve will intersect the temperature axis.
CONDUCTANCE
By finding the reciprocal of the resistance of a material, we have a measure of how well the
material will conduct electricity. The quantity is called conductance, has the symbol G, and
is measured in Siemens (S).

Conductance – measure of the material’s ability to conduct electric current; equal to the reciprocal of resistance

G = 1/R G = (δ A) /L δ = 1 /ρ
ρ
Problems:

1) How many electrons does a coulomb of charge consist?

2) If 21.847 x 1018 electrons pass through a wire in 70 ms, find the current.

3) Find the current in amperes if 650 C of charge pass through a wire in 50 s.

4) If the potential difference between two points is 36 V, how much work is required to
bring 5µC of charge from one point to another.

5) The potential difference between two points in an electric circuit is 24 V. If 0.4 J of


energy were dissipated in a period of 5 ms, what would the current be between the
two points?

6) An aluminum conductor having a cross sectional area of 1843 MCM is used to transmit
power from a high-voltage dc (HVDC) generating station to a large urban center. If the
city is 900 km from the generating station, determine the resistance of the conductor
at the temperature of 20ºC.

7) Determine the resistance of 1500 feet of annealed copper wire having a diameter of
0.23 inch. The resistivity of copper is 1.724 µΩ·cm at 20ºC.

8) A kilometer of wire having a diameter of 11.7 mm and a resistance of 0.031 ohm is


drawn such that its diameter is 5mm. What does its resistance become?

9) Determine the cross-sectional area in circular mils of a wire having the following
diameters:
a. 0.159 centimeter
b. 0.5000 inch
c. 2500 mils

10) The high-voltage dc transmission line mentioned in (6) must be able to operate over a
wide temperature range. Calculate the resistance of the line at temperatures of -40ºC
and 40ºC.

11) An aluminum wire has a resistance of 20 ohms at room temperature (20ºC). Calculate
the resistance of the same wire at temperatures of -40ºC, 100ºC and 200ºC. What
conclusion(s) can you derive from the difference in the resistance values?

12) Determine the conductance of 200 feet of aluminum bus bar (at a temperature of
20ºC) which has a cross-sectional area of 4.0 inches by 0.25 inch. If the temperature
were to increase, what would happen to the conductance of the bus bar?
-6
(ρ = 2.825 x10 Ω-cm)