# water analogy for voltage current and resistance

| December 10, 2020

Thinking about water, if you add sand into the hose and keep the pressure the same, it’s like reducing the diameter of the hose… less water will flow. Having little knowledge of electricity, I have tried to liken the basics to waterflow in my minds eye. Thanks a bunch for sharing the thoughts I had never seen this Wikipedia article. Resistance = Same. The ability to move electricity over long distances is the main reason AC beat out DC a century ago. Also: venture capitalist with Greylock, IBM’s VP Corporate Strategy, MBA from HBS, and NCSU Electrical Engineer. The LEDs in this installation use in total about 53 A. Ohm’s Law also makes intuitive sense if you apply it to the water-and-pipe analogy.. Ohms Law Analogy. Current is the amount of electrons flow through a conductor like water flows along the river bed. How to measure voltage and current using meters and how to connect them to a circuit. Thanks to give us such an amazing blog. How often would you like to receive updates? And larger systems are measured in kilowatts (1 KW = 1000 watts) or megawatts (1 MW = 1,000,000 watts). Before fast cheap electronic switches, An AC transformer immediately followed the fuse and power switch in all high quality electronic instruments, like radios and TV sets. There are many metrics used for the capacity of batteries and not all are immediately logical. If we have a water pump that exerts pressure (voltage) to push water around a "circuit" (current) through a restriction (resistance), we can model how the three variables interrelate. If we have a water pump that exerts pressure (voltage) to push water around a “circuit” (current) through a restriction (resistance), we can model how the three variables interrelate. If we define resistance as 1/ (number of lanes) it's OK again. Current is measured in amperes (abbreviation: “A”), and the mathematical symbol is I. Thanks for subscribing! This equation, written below, is known as Ohm's law. Voltage. Thanks. We promise not to spam you. Completing the CAPTCHA proves you are a human and gives you temporary access to the web property. Electric energy is often confused with electric power but they are two different things – power measures capacity and energy measures delivery. The water analogy of electrical resistance. Even t… Very helpful post. The water volume (power) remains the same but the pressure (voltage) increases as the diameter (current) decreases. These voltage, current and resistance are related via a principle known as Ohm's Law: \[ V = I * R \] which states that the voltage of a circuit is equal to the current through the circuit times its resistance. But we cannot figure out how it travels inside wires.” — Dave Barry. The water/hose analogy for electricity is useful for explaining voltage, current, and power. It is measured in volts (V). The water-and-pipe analogy. Answer Voltage is energy per unit charge. The impedance analogy is one of the two main mechanical-electrical analogies used for representing mechanical systems in the electrical domain, the other being the mobility analogy. ALTERNATING CURRENT or AC is like the water flowing back and forth within the hose many times per second. The wider it is, the more water will flow through. Specifically, voltage is equal to current multiplied by resistance (V = I x R). The voltage is equivalent to the water pressure, the current is equivalent to the flow rate and the resistance is like the pipe size. RESISTANCE is like sand in the hose that slows down the water flow. The expose was simple , easy to comprehend. The three most basic components of electricity are voltage, current, and resistance. Ohm’s Law: Current (I) = Voltage (V) / Resistance (R) To increase the current flowing in a circuit, the voltage must be increased, or the resistance decreased. Suitable for the Year 9 Physical Science course in the Australian Curriculum. Hopefully, this offers a helpful introduction to the basics of electricity. If you change one of them in a circuit, the others will change, too. It is measured in ohms … Once you understand the interplay of voltage, current and resistance—as formalized in Ohm’s Law—you’re well on your way to being able to understand basic circuits. Thanks! Thanks for your explanation. A simple calculation is very easy to use in normal aspects. At first, these concepts can be difficult to understand because we cannot \"see\" them. Voltage = Increase. Resistance = Same. Pump = battery, pressure = voltage, radiators = resistors, current = current. You can unsubscribe at any time. Current is proportional to the diameter of the pipe or the amount of water flowing at that pressure. It is measured in amps (I or A). Example 1. Current is equal to the voltage divided by the resistance. Electric energy is measured in watt hours (wh) but most people are more familiar with the measurement on their electric bills, kilowatt hours (1 kWh = 1,000 watt hours). Viewing the resistance importance in a circuit high voltage resistor is a common component used in every electronic circuit. Increasing the voltage allows us to get the same current through a higher resistance. In the water-flow analogy, sometimes used to explain electric circuits by comparing them with water-filled pipes, voltage (difference in electric potential) is likened to difference in water pressure. A basic electrical engineering equation called Ohm's law spells out how the three terms relate. Amp or Ampere is the unit for current. This model assumes that the water is flowing horizontally, so that the force of gravity can be ignored. In electrical engineering, there is a basic equation that explains how voltage, current and resistance relate. Historically, DC was originally championed by Thomas Edison in the famous Current Wars of the late 1800s. There are a couple of metaphors traditionally used to illustrate voltage, current and resistance. It can be imagined from he analogy of the water tank system, that increasing he voltage in an electrical circuit will increase the level of current flowing.Similarly decreasing the resistance will increase the level of current as well.In fact there is a relationship between voltage, resistance and current. Electric potential and voltage are usually measured in volts. An important refinement of the concept presented in the sentence: “Transformers only work with AC” follows. As per the water tank analogy, water is analogous to charge, pressure is analogous to voltage and the flow of water is analogous to current. The pipes form a circuit and are already full of water. Thus, voltage is analogous to pressure. The voltage is equivalent to the water pressure, the current is equivalent to the flow rate, and the resistance is like the pipe size. Sign up for analysis and news to learn how you can help accelerate the shift from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy. Electricity 101 – Voltage, Current, and Resistance, Electricity 201 – DC, AC, Batteries, and Transformers, Understanding the basics of electricity by thinking of it as water. Another way to prevent getting this page in the future is to use Privacy Pass. A neat analogy to help understand these terms is a system of plumbing pipes. Review; Ohm’s Law also makes intuitive sense if you apply it to the water-and-pipe analogy. BATTERIES can be thought of as water pumps that circulate water through a hose that travels in a closed loop back to the battery. My hope is that underdeveloped countries will never need to interpose the difficulties of sine wave AC, between their solar, and fuel cell DC sources, and their LED and other DC loads. The analogy here is to water pressure. When beginning to explore the world of electricity and electronics, it is vital to start by understanding the basics of voltage, current, and resistance. Slideshow that looks at: Voltage, current, and resistance. For a fixed voltage current and resistance are inversely proportional. Fantastic idea of using water flow system to explain the electricity in simple manner. It is measured in ohms (R or Ω). I wish my physics classes had used this in my undergraduate degree. If you are on a personal connection, like at home, you can run an anti-virus scan on your device to make sure it is not infected with malware. Batteries can only generate DC power. Your first busted myth is on its way. If we have a water pump that exerts pressure (voltage) to push water around a ”circuit” (current) through a restriction (resistance), we can model how the three variables interrelate. You see amp ratings on just about all electric devices. A better analogy, if you need one, is a closed circuit water pumping system such as a central heating hot-water system. I think this Wikipedia article is a better starting point : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydraulic_analogy. One cannot see with the naked eye the energy flowing through a wire or the voltage of a battery sitting on a table. Electrical Property Air flow property Voltage → Pressure Current → Airflow Resistance → Friction This analogy has defined that concept so well. We’d love to hear your feedback and suggestions, so please leave suggestions and comments below. Electric utilities work at a larger scale and will commonly use megawatt hours (1 MWh = 1,000 kWh). Battery 2. But using water as an analogy offers an easy way to gain a basic understanding. Current Voltage and Resistance Worksheet or Water Circuit Analogy to Electric Circuit Worksheet October 16, 2017 We tried to locate some good of Current Voltage and Resistance Worksheet or Water Circuit Analogy to Electric Circuit image to suit your needs. In this case, electric potential is equivalent to pressure. In the water circuit, the pressure P drives the water around the closed loop of pipe at a certain volume flowrate F. If the resistance to flow R is increased, then the volume flowrate decreases proportionately. The diameter of the opening at the bottom of the dam controls how much water can flow to the other side. Power is the total amount of water flowing in given time. Think a spigot on a house, or a water pump. Current = Increase. As a mechanical engineer, this is more intuitive to me. Another way of stating Ohm's Law, that is often easier to understand, is: \[ I = V / R \] If the pressure stays the same and the resistance increases (making it more difficult for the water to flow), then the flow rate must decrease: Pressure = Same. This nicely shows that a big voltage causes a big current. In this analogy, voltage is equivalent to water pressure, current is equivalent to flow rate and resistance is equivalent to pipe size. The three most basic components of electricity are voltage, current, and resistance. How does electricity work in electronics and the grid? FWIW, I initially wrote this as you describe but when I expanded the article to include power and energy, I had to modify the analogy to differentiate between current and energy. How fast charging really works - Charger Universe, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydraulic_analogy. Now, all of those transformers are gone, because creating numerous new DC voltage levels is cheaper and easier, using switching circuits. Electric power is measured in watts (W). The backlight in the Nokia 3310 LCD screen use up to 80 mA. In general, electric potential is equivalent to hydraulic head. These are the three basic building blocks required to manipulate and utilize electricity. Series Connection of Cells • Each cell provides 1.5 V • Two cells connected one after another, in series, provide 3 V, while ... “resistance” to the change in current flow, but eventually the flywheel/turbine will move in the same direction as the current flow. TRANSFORMERS are like holding your thumb partially over the end of the hose to get the water to spray farther. That's not true, but may be a question of definition. AC is now the global standard for delivering electricity to homes and buildings via the grid. Ohm’s Law. Free electrical energy from sine waves, while freeing it from the utilities that employ them! Current is a measure of how big the flow is. An Analogy for Ohm’s Law Chapter 2 - Ohm's Law Nikola Tesla and George Westinghouse championed AC over DC and they eventually prevailed. Thanks for signing up! Flow rate = Increase. If you are at an office or shared network, you can ask the network administrator to run a scan across the network looking for misconfigured or infected devices. Current in perspective. ENERGY is like measuring the volume of water that has flowed through the hose over a period of time, like filling a 5 gallon bucket in a minute. VOLTAGE is like the pressure that pushes water through the hose. It shows simplicity can sometimes be actually simple. Current as Charge Flow Electricity and Water Analogy Learning Goal: To understand the analogy between water pressure, water flow, voltage, and current As suggested by the fact that we call both currents, the flow of charged particles through an electrical circuit is analogous in some ways to the flow of water … There is a basic equation in electrical engineering that states how the three terms relate. This is good learning exposure by understanding basic knowledge about electric power for those who has different technical background. Current: Again this is a common quantity. A narrow constriction means a big resistance so you also have the relationship big resistance means small current. Now, let’s keep using the hose analogy to dive into the murkier waters of circuits (pun intended, sorry). Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Resistance As everyone knows, a river that loses height quickly flows fast and furious, whereas a relatively gently sloped river will have a correspondingly gentle current. The basis for the analogy can be explained with the use of a few very simple electrical circuits and their drainage equivalents. The higher the water level between the top of the dam and the other side, the more pressure there is against the wall. CURRENT is like the diameter of the hose. A simple electrical circuit is depicted in Figure 1a. Electrical resistance opposes the flow of charges in a wire and the hose can restrict the flow of water thru bending of the hose or a kink in the hose. VOLTAGE is like the pressure that pushes water through the hose. CURRENT is like the diameter of the hose. • The fundamental laws of electricity are mathematically complex. A more powerful pump means a higher voltage battery. The voltage (or voltage drop or potential difference) is a difference in pressure between two points. Transformers only work with AC. Your IP: 212.52.142.20 Large river (bigger conductor) can pass more water (current). In our analogy, the current is how much water is released. They include amp-hours and kilowatt hours. Cloudflare Ray ID: 5ff1ef7e8825bbdc It’s quite interesting the analogy used to explain electricity. Firstly, it is necessary to define the analogous terms used in this paper. This is resistance. This combination circuit is smaller, lighter, and less expensive, than the sine wave AC transformer that it displaces. Voltage = Same. The water analogy breaks down a little here but AC is easily created by electric generators (also called alternators). Charge (coulombs) is like water volume (liters), voltage is like water pressure (kPa or PSI), current (amps) is like water flow rate (liters per second). 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