What is Electric circuits

Chapter 1.3 Electric circuits

Lessons In Electric Circuits Volume I – DC Book
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Summary of Contents

Lessons In Electric Circuits Volume I – DC Book

  • 12CHAPTER 1. BASIC CONCEPTS OF ELECTRICITY1.3Electric circuitsYou might have been wondering how electrons can continuously flow in a uniform directionthrough wires without the benefit of these hypothetical electron Sources and Destinations.In order for the Source-and-Destination scheme to work, both would have to have an infinitecapacity for electrons in order to sustain a continuous flow! Using the marble-and-tube analogy,the marble source and marble destination buckets would have to be infinitely large to containenough marble capacity for a ”flow” of marbles to be sustained.The answer to this paradox is found in the concept of a circuit: a never-ending loopedpathway for electrons. If we take a wire, or many wires joined end-to-end, and loop it aroundso that it forms a continuous pathway, we have the means to support a uniform flow of electronswithout having to resort to infinite Sources and Destinations:electrons can flowin a path withoutbeginning or end,continuing forever!A marble-and-hula-hoop "circuit"Each electron advancing clockwise in this circuit pushes on the one in front of it, whichpushes on the one in front of it, and so on, and so on, just like a hula-hoop filled with marbles.Now, we have the capability of supporting a continuous flow of electrons indefinitely withoutthe need for infinite electron supplies and dumps. All we need to maintain this flow is acontinuous means of motivation for those electrons, which we’ll address in the next section ofthis chapter.It must be realized that continuity is just as important in a circuit as it is in a straight pieceof wire. Just as in the example with the straight piece of wire between the electron Source andDestination, any break in this circuit will prevent electrons from flowing through it: