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Questions tagged [voltage]

Voltage is the unit of measurement for electronic potential, from one point location to another.

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33
votes
3answers
163k views

Why do we use Root Mean Square (RMS) values when talking about AC voltage

What makes it a good idea to use RMS rather than peak values of current and voltage when we talk about or compute with AC signals.
9
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7answers
98k views

What causes an electric shock - Current or Voltage?

Though voltage and current are two interdependent physical quantity, I would like to know what gives more "shock" to a person - Voltage or Current? In simple words, will it cause more "electric - ...
14
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3answers
114k views

Why do birds sitting on electric wires not get shocked?

When we touch electric wires, we get shocked. Why don't birds sitting on electric wires not get shocked?
3
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1answer
236 views

High Voltage Powerlines - clarification of energy loss

I've been having a bit of trouble understanding the High-Voltage powerlines. If I was sending power from $A \rightarrow B$, we have: Ohm's law $V = IR$ Power lost in the form of heat $P = I^2 R$ ...
8
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2answers
7k views

Why is the voltage drop across an ideal wire zero?

I'm having trouble conceptualizing why the voltage drop between two points of an ideal wire (i.e. no resistance) is $0~V$. Using Ohm's Law, the equation is such: $$ V = IR \\ V = I(0~\Omega) \\ V = 0$...
37
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16answers
97k views

I don't understand what we really mean by voltage drop

This post is my best effort to seek assistance on a topic which is quite vague to me, so that I am struggling to formulate my questions. I hope that someone will be able to figure out what it is I'm ...
22
votes
11answers
30k views

What is the difference between electric potential, potential difference (PD), voltage and electromotive force (EMF)?

This is a confused part ever since I started learning electricity. What is the difference between electric potential, potential difference (PD), voltage and electromotive force (EMF)? All of them have ...
20
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6answers
8k views

How do electrons “know” to share their voltage between two resistors?

My physics teacher explained the difference between voltage and current using sandwiches. Each person gets a bag full of sandwiches when they pass through the battery. Current = the number of people ...
4
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4answers
7k views

What determines the forward voltage drop for a diode?

I have always had the idea that the forward voltage drop in a semiconductor diode was related in a simple way to the bandgap energies in the semiconductor. However this is apparently not the case: ...
1
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4answers
1k views

Voltage drop along an idealized resistance-free wire in a circuit?

If you connected the positive terminal of a battery to the negative terminal to a battery with a wire with (hypothetically) no resistance, and are asked to give the voltage drop of a segment of wire ...
30
votes
6answers
6k views

Could someone intuitively explain to me Ohm's law?

Could someone intuitively explain to me Ohm's law? I understand what voltage is and how it is the electric potential energy and that it is the integral of the electric field strength etc. I also ...
11
votes
2answers
9k views

How electric currents can flow between 2 points at the same potential?

According to Ohm's law, if there is a potential difference, $V$, across a resistor then there is a current, $I$, flowing through it. Since we assume that points along the connecting wire are at the ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

Justification of root mean square [duplicate]

In the top answer to the question Why do we use Root Mean Square (RMS) values when talking about AC voltage, the following was stated: This RMS is a mathematical quantity (used in many math fields) ...
16
votes
5answers
56k views

What is the difference between a battery and a charged capacitor?

What is the difference between a battery and a charged capacitor? I can see lot of similarities between capacitor and battery. In both these charges are separated and When not connected in a circuit ...
2
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5answers
2k views

The Difference Between voltage and current

I know that this question has been asked many times before, and I have read over several of the threads asking this question, but they do not include the gripe I have with my problem of understanding ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Does voltage drop occur with zero load and zero resistance [duplicate]

Imagine a circuit consisting of just a battery and conducting wires which have zero dissipativity so that there is no loss of energy( Zero resistance). If the wires are connected to both terminals the ...
13
votes
5answers
18k views

How can one derive Ohm's Law? [duplicate]

I am looking for the derivation of Ohm's Law, i.e., $V$ is directly proportional to $I$. Can someone help me with it?
10
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3answers
89k views

Current without Voltage and Voltage without Current?

At school I've always learned that you can view Current and Voltage like this: The current is the flow of charge per second and the Voltage is how badly the current 'wants' to flow. But I'm having ...
5
votes
6answers
10k views

If induced voltage (back-emf) is equal and opposite to applied voltage, what drives the current?

Suppose we have a circuit with a voltage source, a switch open and an inductor all in series. If we close the switch, the potential difference of the voltage source is instantaneously applied to the ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Voltage drop = more electrons on one side of resistor

I have been asking myself this question for a long time now. Suppose we have two resistors in series connected to a voltage source. Simply put, does the voltage drop on each resistor mean that there ...
13
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6answers
33k views

Why the electric potential of Earth is zero?

For a localized charge distribution the potential is set to zero far away from the charge distribution (at infinity) Now, when grounding a conductor, i.e. connecting it to Earth, it is said that we ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

What maintains constant voltage in a battery?

I know there's lots of questions that address similar situations, (Batteries connected in Parallel, Batteries and fields?, Naive Question About Batteries, and the oft-viewed I don't understand ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

What kills you: Voltage or Electric current? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What causes an electric shock - Current or Voltage? When someone gets electrocuted, what kills them; a high Voltage or a high Electric current, and why?
2
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5answers
1k views

Ohm's Law Intuition

When we derive Ohm's Law using the Drude Model, we assume at one point of time that $E=V/L$, when is fact, $E=dV/dL$, unless $E$ is constant, in which case the assumption $E=V/L$ is true. But I don't ...
0
votes
2answers
727 views

Electric power transmission

If we want to transmit electic current for a long distance, we must minimize a heat that releases because of the resistanse. We cannot make a cable wide because it is expensive and it will be massive. ...
6
votes
3answers
20k views

Questions about voltage

For some reason, I feel like the concept of voltage is escaping my grasp. I've done much research on these forums and through texts, and come across answers that seem quite well thought out, but still ...
8
votes
5answers
70k views

Why does voltage remains same over Parallel Circuit

Why does voltage remains same over parallel circuit. If a resistor is connected in the circuit some of the charge should be transformed into heat and make a lack of charge after the resistor (in my ...
11
votes
7answers
19k views

Difference between current and voltage sources

I am confused about the current and voltage. My intuitive example would be that of a pipe of say water. The diameter of the pipe determines the amount of water flowing per second but the pressure is ...
18
votes
4answers
13k views

Why does vacuum have a nonzero characteristic impedance towards electromagnetic radiation?

On Wikipedia, the impedance of free space $Z_0$ is defined as square root of the ratio of the permeability of free space $\mu_0$ to the permittivity of free space $\epsilon_0$, i.e. $$Z_0 = \sqrt{\...
12
votes
5answers
7k views

Why doesn't an electron accelerate in a circuit?

Why don't electrons accelerate when a voltage is applied between two points in in a circuit? All the textbooks I've referred conveyed the meaning that when an electron traveled from negative potential ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Why isn't there a potential difference across a disconnected diode?

I know this question sounds silly, as if there was a potential difference a current would be created when the terminals are connected together and this would mean energy has come from somewhere. The ...
5
votes
4answers
5k views

What is the physical meaning of electric potential, potential difference, and voltage?

When resembling the electricity flow through a wire to people walking through a street: electrons are people, current is the number of people, resistance is the barriers on the way. But what is the ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

If we connect a long wire to a battery, will battery produce more electrons?

I actually have three related questions: An open circuit chemical cell separates charges creating a surplus of electrons on its negative terminus and a shortage of electrons on its positive terminus. ...
-1
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3answers
4k views

Transformers: relation between their current, voltage and resistance

My current understanding Transformers are used to step up and down voltage keeping power constant. Hence, for example, if I step up some voltage, the current will decrease in the secondary circuit. ...
3
votes
3answers
714 views

Kirchhoff's Voltage Law in a General Electromagnetic Field

Recently, Prof. Walter Lewin and YouTuber ElectroBOOM started a discussion about KVL, after Dr. Lewin claimed that KVL did not hold in the presence of an magneto-dynamic field. I would argue that Dr. ...
2
votes
2answers
605 views

Charging by induction

When we charge an conductor by induction and grounding, we first bring a negative charge to the conductor. As a result the mobile electrons of the conductor get repelled and stay far from the negative ...
2
votes
4answers
141 views

How does resistance *really* work? (DC, battery, LED, atoms, electrons)

Backstory: I’m a software engineer just getting into electronics and it seems that everything I’ve ever been told about electricity my whole life is a candy-coated lie. I can’t find consistent logical ...
1
vote
4answers
134 views

Why does inductor current lag the applied voltage at its terminal by 90 degrees?

I studied electromagnetism and I am currently working with Inductors. I could not figure out the physical reason based on electromagnetics on why inductor current lags the applied voltage by 90 ...
0
votes
3answers
24k views

Why does the area of the plates affect the capacitance?

Why does the area of the plates affect the capacitance? Lets say I have a parallel plate capacitor with a charge of 10C and a potential difference of 5V. By the definition $C=Q/V$, the capacitance is ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

How is potential difference maintained in a battery?

I am beginning of learn electricity so sorry if my questions are confusing or does not make sense. My question is specifically about how voltage (which I guess is due to separation of uneven charges) ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Why is 2-terminal sensing less accurate than 4-terminal sensing if the internal resistance of leads is known?

I have a pretty good understanding of 2-terminal vs. 4-terminal (kelvin) sensing measurements. I understand that in the 4-terminal measurement, current is supplied by 2 terminals that are separate ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

Is it safe to apply Kirchhoff's voltage law to a closed loop containing an inductance with unsteady current?

Is it safe to apply Kirchhoff's voltage law to a closed loop containing an inductance with unsteady current? If I have a circuit that is just a battery in series with a resistor and an inductor, can I ...
1
vote
2answers
6k views

Batteries in series vs parallel

As fa as I understand it, two identicle batteries in parallel will give double the amperage than just one battery and two batteries in series will give double the voltage. If my understanding is ...
1
vote
1answer
811 views

Meaning of a battery being 2.5 V

So this is a question with which I have been stuck for a while and it all revolves around the concept of volt. I have posted a LOT of questions on physics forums while trying to understand the ...
1
vote
3answers
530 views

What is voltage?

I am a little unclear on what voltage actually is and I am trying to find out what the physical cause for voltage is. Is it the speed of the electrons through the conductor or is it an excess of ...
0
votes
2answers
107 views

$V = V_1 + V_2$ confusion? Why is my “proof ”incorrect? [closed]

Why isn't $V= V_1 + V_2$? $V=V_a - V_c = V_a - V_b + V_b - V_c$, $V_a - V_b= V_1$ and $V_b - V_c = V_2$ Doesn't that prove that $V = V_1 + V_2$? Regardless of $V_3$, If i'm wrong , is there a way to ...
0
votes
4answers
3k views

Why must identical lightbulbs in series have identical voltage drops?

When I connect two identical lightbulbs in series, how come they have equal brightness? Why can't one lightbulb have a larger voltage drop than the other? (i.e. the first lightbulb "uses up all the ...
-4
votes
3answers
231 views

Electric Field Topology in a Wire - Exact Duplicate [closed]

1. How is the electric field set up in a wire by a battery so that we can assume that potential at a node is constant? 2. What happens to the electric field across a resistance which makes voltage '...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Kirchoff's rules and inductance

Can Kirchoff's loop rule be applied in a scenario involving an inductor? Kirchoff's loop rule states that the closed loop integral of E dot dl is equal to zero. But, in a situation with an inductor, a ...
15
votes
5answers
714 views

At an atomic level, what happens when you connect two batteries in series so that their voltages are added?

I can't for the life of me figure this out. I feel like i'm missing some crucial detail about how batteries work. Imagine two batteries connected in series, like this: ...