Basics Of Electricity

By: Barney Garcia

Since generators (We are going to discussing about a whole lot of them!), are primarily used to generate electricity, it is imperative that we understand a few basics of electricity itself. It has been known that electrical sciences has had many students faint and the complicated wiring diagrams you must have seen sometimes would not have made you feel great about it. For the sake of simplicity let us obviate the jargon and handle it with a common man's language.

Electric currents are a result of microscopic elements called electrons (which are essentially a part of an atom, a basic element to all known matter) , flowing together from one end of a conductor - any material capable of allowing such electrons to flow, to another. You would typically know when this happens, while you hold on to a poorly insulated conductor, which results in shock. The reason why this happens is because the electrons flowing in that conductor have utilized your hand as a conductor too and started flowing through it and hence kicks in the importance of proper safety and insulation for the conductors.

Now coming to the flowing part, the electrons can only move from one end of the conductor to the other, only when there is enough potential for it to do so, something akin to water being able to flow from a point higher in space than the point where it ought to flow to. The amount of electrons which have been initiated to flow from one end of the conductor will determine what they can do, or much current can be produced at the other end of the conductor. The current flowing is measured in Amperages (Amps) and the potential generated between the two ends of the conductor is called Voltage, measured in Volts.

A large amount of voltage and current (Amperage) can kill you or knock you off, just as water rushing from a great height towards you could have. That aside, it is also important to know what the current coming out of the end of conductor has to do. The power that ought to be generated is measured in Wattages (Watt -hours). For example, a 100 watt bulb burning for an hour would consume 100 Watts power.

If you had to know how much electric power a device might end up using, we just have to calculate the Amperes times Voltage to get to the Wattage.

A little knowledge about electricity you must have gained now will help in understand how different generators produce the electric currents in different ways.

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