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I have neither given nor received any unauthorized help on this assignment, nor witnessed any violation of the UNC Charlotte Code of Academic Integrity.

11/18/13

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Problem Statement: Each XLIX team member was given specifications to build a voltage divider with five nodes. There is a specific voltage drop between each node that will require a combination of resistors to achieve. Each team member received a sheet of paper with the voltages that were to be measured at each node, 25 common resistors, a simple bread board and some jumper wire. Network eleven required the following voltages at each node: 17.054, 11.798, 5.1334, 4.6131, and 0. The resistors provided to each member came in strips of five and included 220, 330, 2200, 3300, and 10000. The divider is required to have one parallel configuration, and may contain more parallel configurations as well as configurations in series. No other outside resistors or wiring may be used other than the materials provided. It is safe to assume that the resistors are all within the manufacturers mar ked five percent tolerance and that a reliable 18 volt DC power supply will be used for testing. Also it is safe to assume that the breadboards that were distributed were not tampered with and will provide good connections for the resistors and jumper wire. Research A circuit can be simply defined as a closed loop that directs the flow of electrical charge to perform an action. The flow of positive and negative charge is called current. Current can be likened to blood, and the wire or conductor that it flows through would be the veins. Voltage can be seen as blood pressure when it comes to circuits. Voltage is the electrical potential that two opposite charges have with each other to do work if they were free to fly together (Martin 2000). The larger the charge and the greater distance between the charges results in a higher voltage. The greater the voltage the greater the force is driving the charges together (Martin 2000). To relate voltage back to blood pressure it is what pushes the current through the wire, and how hard it pushes the current. Another very important part of circuits is the ability to control the flow of current. This is achieved through resistors. Resistors changes the flow of current through a circuit by restricting the flow. The restrictive flow is achieved by using poor conductors in the loop of the circuit. Common resistors are made of carbon powder and an insulated protective coating that the lead wires are embedded in. These common resistors have one major drawback. They are not as precise as some alternatives available. A five to twenty percent tolerance is marked on the each resistor depending on the tolerance the manufacturer is producing. The lower the tolerance for the resistors the lower the cost because they are less precise and quick and easy to produce. The construction of resistors follow the same basic principles and they all function in similar ways. The current flow is obstructed by the poor conductor and produces heat that is released to the surroundings (Platt 2013). The amount of resistance that is produced can be altered when resistors are connected in different configurations. There are two main configurations that change the amount of resistance in a circuit, resisters in series and resisters in parallel. The most basic configuration for resistors is to connect them in series. This is useful to generate more resistance without using a larger resistor. Connecting resistors in series creates a resistance of the sum of the resistances. This is beneficial because it allows for many combinations of specific resistances without having a resistor with that specific resistance. Connecting resistors in series will always result in a higher resistance than any one of the resistors in the series. Resistors in series also allows for different voltages along the circuit, while still dropping a total voltage from the beginning of a circuit to the end. The other common configuration for circuits is to use resistors in parallel. Fred Martin provides a good visualization of parallel resistors in his work called Basic Electronics. Martin explains that the current flow is like a water pipe and when there are two paths for the water to travel it will be easier than going through one pipe. This is how resistors in parallel work. The resistance of two or more resistors in parallel will always be less than the resistance of the smallest resistor. The equation to calculate the resistance of two resistors in parallel is shown in Equation 1.

Equation 1. When resistors are in parallel a current will want to travel the path of less resistance, so more current will travel down the side with the least resistance. This again follows the water example, the water will travel the path of least resistance. This is a brief explanation of resistors, but without a power source a circuit cannot function.

2

Batteries are very common power sources for circuits. There are many variations when it comes to batteries, but they function under the same principle. There are chemicals in a container that react to form an electrical potential between two leads that are in the liquid (Platt 2013). Batteries can have different voltages depending on how many cells the battery contains. The voltage of a battery is the sum of the voltages of the cell. The current that a battery delivers is limited by the internal resistance of the battery. Since a circuit is a loop the current that the battery produces will leave one lead of the battery and travel through the circuit and return to the battery with the same value as when it left. When the current returns to the battery the ions in the chemical travel in a loop so that the current going out and current returning to the battery are the same. The major formula that relates current voltage and resistance was derived by Charles Ohm and is referred to as Ohms Law. Ohms law is the foundation for understanding circuits and electronics. In Equation 2, the relationship between voltage, resistance and current can be seen. or Equation 2 Fred Martin again gives a simple visualization to better understand how these three factors are related. The current, or actual flow of electrons, is equal to how hard the current is being forced through the circuit divided by the resistance of the current flow. This equation can be manipulated to solve for all three variables and is necessary to solve circuits. One common way Ohms law is seen is to solve for the voltage when the resistance and current is known. A very useful deviation is when Ohms law is solving for current. This is especially useful when it comes to batteries, because the current cannot be measured from the battery alone. The current can only be measured if the battery is connected to a load of know resistance. For the voltage and the known resistance then the current the battery is producing can be solved using Ohms Law. This is one of many useful manipulations of Ohms law used in circuits.

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Ohms Law Resistance for Resistors in Series Resistance for Resistors in Parallel Current=0.0009A Beginning Voltage=18V Node 1=17.054V Node 2=11.798V Node 3=5.1334V Node 4=4.6131V Alternate Section 1: V=0.946V

Combination: +220=1045

Combination:

Section 2: V=5.256V

Section 2: V=5.256V

Combination:

Combination:

Section 3: V=6.6698V

Section 3: V=6.6698V

Combination:

Combination:

Section 4: V=0.5203V

Section 4: V=0.5203V

Combination:

Combination:

Section 5: V=4.6131V

Section 5: V=4.6131V

Combination: =5110

Combination:

5

Visio

Node 1 17.054V

Node 2 11.798V

Node 3 5.1334V

3300 3300 2200 330 220 3300 2200 330 3300 3300 330 330 220

18V

Network: 11 I=0.0009A

2200

10000

2200 Node 5 0V

10000

Node 1 17.054V

Node 2 11.798V

10000 2200 330 10000 330 220 3300 2200 2200 2200

18V

330

Network: 11 I=0.0009A

330

Node 5 0V

10000

6

Works Cited Martin, Fred. Rice University, "Basic Electronics." Last modified 2000. Accessed November 16, 2013. https://www.clear.rice.edu/elec201/Course_Notes.htm. Platt, Charles. Encyclopedia of Electronic Components Volume 1: Resistors, Capacitors. California: O'Reilly, 2013.

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