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Electricity

Potential difference: The potential difference between two separate points is defined as
the work done to move a unit positive charge from one point to another.
W
V
Q

Unit : Volt
1 Volt
1
1 joule
1 V 1J C
1 coulomb

Electric current:
Q
I
t

I = current
Q = net charge flowing
t = time
Unit: Q = Coulomb (C)
1C
1A
1s

I = Ampere (A)
t = Second (s)
The conventional direction of electric current is from the positive terminal of cell to the
negative terminal through the outer circuit.
Various sources of electricity are dry cell, solar cell, electric generator.
Symbols of Electric components

Electric component Symbol
Electric cell

Electric bulb

Battery

Wire

Switch in ON position

Switch in OFF position

Combination of cells

Positive (or negative) terminal of a cell is connected to the negative (or positive) terminal of
the other cell. This combination is called a battery.

Chemical effect of current:

The bulb will glow or the magnetic needle will show deflection if the liquid in the beaker
is a good conductor of electricity.
When an electric current flows through a wire, the wire becomes hot. This is called the
heating effect of electric current.
Joules law of heating suggests that heat produced in a resistor is directly proportional to
the
o square of the current flowing through the resistor i.e., H I
2

o resistance of the resistor i.e., H R
o time for which the current flows through the resistor i.e., H t
When an electric current flows through a wire, it behaves as a magnet and is called
electromagnet. This is called the magnetic effect of electric current.

Electric power
2
2
V
P VI I R
R

Unit 1 kWh = 3.6 10
6
J
1 W = 1V 1A
Value of the voltage required and the electric power consumed by an electrical appliance is
called its rating.
Devices such as kitchen heater, electric bulb, electric iron, electric fuse, water heater, etc.
work on the principle of heating effect of electric current.
When the amount of current flowing through the element of an electric fuse exceeds the
limiting value, it melts and breaks the circuit.
Electric power =
electricenergyconsumed
time taken

Commercial unit of electric energy is kilowatt-hour.

Electricity used at home: The circuit is used to operate high-rating devices such room
heaters, water heaters, electric stove, refrigerators, microwave ovens etc. These devices
consist of a high-rating fuse of 15 A. The power circuit prohibits any damage of circuits and
devices caused by the heating effect of current. Each room is provided with a different
electrical circuit with a separate fuse. This ensures that the supply of electricity can be
turned off if a fault occurs in one room, keeping the circuits of other rooms unaffected. All
circuits in a house are connected in a parallel combination because in this connection the
supply voltage of 220 V does not divide. Thus, all appliances receive an equal supply of 220
V.
Importance of earthing: We can receive an electric shock on touching a running
appliance. This is caused by the leakage of current from the appliance. Earthing provides a
safety measure against the electric shock, caused by the leakage of current. A third wire
called the Earth wire (E) is also used in domestic wiring. This wire has green insulation over
it. A copper plate connected to the main switch via the meter is connected at one end of
this wire, E. Sometimes, the insulation of a live wire burns due to excessive heating. A
naked live wire may lead to an electrical shock. To protect the appliance against an
electrical shock, its metallic case is connected with the Earth wire. Hence, a domestic
socket is composed of three wires, namely the live wire, neutral wire, and Earth wire.
Hazard of electricity:
o Electric fuse: An electric fuse is a safety device that protects the wiring against
excessive heating caused by an excess supply of current. Excessive flow of current
can be caused by any of the following two cases:
o Short circuiting : Short circuiting occurs when naked live and neutral wires touch
each other. In such a case, the resistance of the circuit becomes very less. Now,
according to Ohms law, current is inversely proportional to resistance. Thus, the
lowering of resistance of the circuit raises the current to a significant amount. As a
result, the wires become hot and a spark is caused by Joules heating effect of
current. This situation is known as short circuiting.
o Overloading :A large amount of current is withdrawn from the circuit, when a
large number of electrical appliances of high power-rating are switched on at the
same time or connected in a single multi-plug. This situation is called overloading.
It may even lead to a fire in the circuit.
Conservation of electricity is very essential aspect.
Electric metre is used to record the amount of electricity consumed. It is measured in
kilowatt-hour.

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