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Unformatted text preview: Lab #30 Series and Parallel Circuits Introduction: An electrical circuit is a continuous path or array of paths through which an electrical current can flow. The two different ways in which components of a circuit can be connected are called "series" and "parallel". In a series connection, components are connected one after another; therefore, the same current flows through all of them. In a parallel connection, the circuit components are connected side by side. That is, the positive and negative sides of each component are respectively connected together; therefore, each has the same potential drop across. In this lab, we will explore measurements of current and potential difference in simple circuits. Also, we will attempt to verify the textbook expressions for the equivalent resistance of components connected in series and in parallel, and for the power dissipation in a resistive load. For instance, for a circuit consisting of any three resistance values R 1 , R 2 , R 3, the equivalent resistance in series R s and in parallel R p are, R S = R 1 + R 2 + R 3 + … + R N (1) and 1/ R P = 1/ R 1 + 1/ R 2 + 1/ R 3 + … + 1/ R N , (2) respectively. Apparatus: A connection board ("breadboard", see figures 1 & 2) with 3 resistor sockets, a multimeter with ammeter, a voltmeter, and a variable voltage supply set for 10 Volts output. Optional: The tutorial on the computer “Lighting up Circuits”. Procedure: If you have never used circuits, before you start the experiment, go to the tutorial “Lighting Up Circuits” on the computer and practice. When you are building a circuit, be sure the power supply is turned off the whole time, until you are ready to take measurements. Use only the plug-in connecting wires supplied. If you need more wires, ask your instructor....
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- Spring '11
- Current, Resistor, power supply, Electrical resistance, Series and parallel circuits