Monday, May 21, 2012

Most circuits contain many loads. What happens when there is more than one resistor in a series, and they are parallel?

When resistors are arranged in a series circuit, the current passes through each resistor, down the line. In a parallel circuit, some power goes down either side of the circuit. A waterslide analogy can be used to explain the difference between an electrical circuit with two resistors in series and an electrical circuit with two resistors in parallel.

Each circuit consists of two slides. The electricity going through the circuit are the people going on the slides. One waterslide has the two slides connected, creating one long slide. The other has them separate, parallel to each other. People can choose to go down either slide. A person who slides down the longer slide will take longer going down, and fewer people will be able to go down the slide. On the parallel slides, more people will be able to go down.

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