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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

VOCATIONAL TRAINING CENTRE

BASIC TRAINING PROGRAM


Electrical

MODULE E-01

ELECT.FUNDAMENTALS-1

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 1

MAGNETISM AND ELECTROMAGNETISM


1.1 MAGNETISM
Long ago, in the Middle Ages, it was found that a mineral called 'lodestone', which
is in fact an iron ore attracted small iron objects. So 'magnetism', which is a natural
phenomenon, was discovered. It got its name from a district in Asia Minor called
'Magnesia' where lodestone was found.
It was found too that an iron bar or needle, if rubbed with lodestone, could also be
made to attract small pieces of iron - that is, the magnetism could be imparted from
the lodestone to the iron. Such a needle, if placed on a wooden raft and left to float
in a bowl of water, always tended to lie in a rough North to South direction. So we
had the first primitive compass.
At this stage it never occurred to anybody that there was any connection whatever
between magnetism and electricity, and it was left to Faraday to bring these two
together in 'electromagnetism '.

1.2 ELECTROMAGNETISM ,
In 1820 Oersted discovered that an electric current flowing in a wire caused a
magnetic field around it. This can easily be detected by placing a small compass
near the wire and observing the movement 07 the needle when current is switched
on. This is shown in Figure 1.1

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The effect can be intensified by bending the wire into a loop. The magnetic fields
from each bit of the wire are brought together inside the loop, where the magnetic
field is concentrated and intensified.

If now the wire is bent into several loops, or a 'helix', as shown in Figure. 1.2, the
magnetic fields of each ‘turn' are superimposed, and the field down the middle is still
further intensified.
The result is a ‘coil' which, when current flows in it, produces an artificial magnet, called
an 'electromagnet'. Unlike a natural magnet, whose magnetism is always present, an
electromagnet can be switched on or off at will.
If iron is introduced inside the coil, the magnetic strength is still further increased, and
'permanent' magnets can be made this way. Very powerful electromagnets can be built,
which are widely used: they' can actuate solenoids or valves directly; they can drive any
device needing a fore-and-aft motion; and they are used with cranes in scrap-yards for
picking up large weights of scrap-iron. On a smaller scale they are used to operate relays
and switching devices.
Although it may not at first seem so, solenoids and other electromagnets operate just as
well with alternating as with direct current.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER-- 2

SIMPLE D.C. CIRCUIT - OHM'S LAW

2.1 VOLTS AND AMPS


in an equivalent water circuit, the pump delivers a pressure (measured in psi,
kgf/cm2 or bars). and the water flow is measured in gal/min, or m3fs or other unit.
50 for an electric circuit. Pressure is measured in VOLTS (after Volta, the early
Italian experimenter) and current in AMPERES (after an early French pioneer).
Instruments are made which indicate pressures in volts and currents in amperes -
all switchboards have voltmeters and ammeters.
On platforms and large installations pressures tend to be very high, involving
thousands or tens of thousands of volts. In those cases the 'kilovolt' (equals one
thousand volts) is usually taken as the unit of pressure. Thus on most Shell
platforms the main generation pressure is 6.6kv, or 6.6 thousand volts, For
domestic appliances and small services 440 or 250 volts is usual on platforms and
415 or 240 volts ashore.

2.2 CURRENT FLOW - OHi\1'S LAW


Once the units of pressure and current flow were established, a German
experimenter named Georg Simon Ohm discovered a very important relationship
between them.
It has already been seen that some materials (mainly metals) allow electrons to
move freely but not as freely as each other), whereas others do not do so and tend
to resist such movement :- again some more so than others.

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Ohm discovered that, for a given sample of material, the current flowing / (in
amperes) was directly proportional to the pressure applied V (in volts). In other
words, for that given sample. The ratio of voltage to current was constant:

v
= const.
T
This was true for anyone sample, but the constant itself differed from sample to
sample. The ratio is called the 'resistance' of that sample, symbol R. it can be
considered as opposition to the flow of electrons - like friction.
Ohm's Law can then be stated:

V
=R
I
Or V = IR
Where R is the resistance of the sample and differs from sample to sample. If V is
measured in volts and 1 in amperes, R is measured in 'ohms'.

2.3 HEATING
An important result stems from this. Since the resistance R of a conductor is akin
to friction in the mechanical equivalent. it might be expected that loss of energy by
heating might result from a current flow.
This indeed is so. Whenever current is forced by pressure of voltage to flow
through a conductor which has resistance and all conductors do, even metals),
heat is generated in that, conductor. The rate of heat generation is proportional to
the resistance (in ohms) and to the square of the current in amperes scuared).
That is to say, the heat generated is L2 R, and. since it represents continuing loss
07 energy, it is expressed in the energy-rate unit 'watts' (W).
It is important to remember that current flowing in any conductor, be it cable,
generator, motor or transformer, gives rise to heat. Which must be conducted away
if the temperature is not to rise to a level witch can damage the insulation and
possibly lead to flashover or breakdown and severe damage, or even danger to
life.
To reduce heJt generation either the current (I) or the resistance (R) must be
reduced (for example, b,' increasing the cross-section or the conductor).

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER. 3

RESISTANCES IN SERI ES AND PARALLEL


3.1 SERIES CIRCUITS
The term 'in series' means that two or more circuits are supplied one after the other
in any single circuit, as shown diagrammatically in Figure 3.1.

Since there is only one single path from the power source through the circuits and
back again, the same current flows through all. The voltage, or 'pressure', is
reduced by resistance according to Ohm's Law: each circuit element causes a
'voltage drop' across it, very similar to the 'loss of head' due to fluid flow in a
hydraulic system. Also the sum of the individual volt-drops is equal to the applied
voltage.
By Ohm's Law the volt-drop V1 across the load R1 is

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That is to say, the total resistance of a series circuit is equal to the sum of all the
individual resistances.
It is evident that the failure of any single component in a series circuit interrupts the
supply to all; also that each element of load must work at a reduced voltage. For
these reasons the series arrangement of loads is seldom used in power circuits.

3.2 PARALLEL CIRCUITS


The term 'in parallel' means that the circuits are so arranged that there is a
separate path through each, as shown in Figure 3.2

The voltage applied to every circuit element is the same throughout. The total current divides
between the circuits according to the resistance of each element, so that the current flowing through
each individual circuit is less than the total, and the sum of the currents flowing through the
individual elements is equal to the total available current.

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By Ohm's Law the current L1 flowing through the load R1 is:

That is to say, the inverse of the equivalent resistance of a set of parallel circuits is
equal to the sum of the inverses of each individual resistance.
It is evident that for the' power engineer the parallel circuit has two important
practical advantages. First, the failure of any element of load has no effect on the
rest; they continue to receive a supply at the correct voltage and to draw the
current which each individually requires. Second, all apparatus is supplied at the
same voltage. Consequently, the parallel circuit is used almost exclusively for
power supply in industrial plant.
It should be observed in passing that the characteristic of the series circuit, in
which resistances in series have the effect of reducing the voltage at different
points of the circuit, finds wide practical application in electronic apparatus such as
radio, control, and 'solid-state' measuring equipment,

3.3 SUMMARY

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IF R is the single resistance equivalent to a number of individual resistances R1,


R2, R3… then

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 4

ELECTROMAGNETIC INDUCTION

4,1 FARADAY'S LAW


One day in 1837 Michael Faraday was working in his laboratory when by accident
he dropped a magnet into a coil of wire which happened to be connected to a
galvanometer. He noticed, to his surprise, that the galvanometer needle gave a
kick when this happened. He was even more surprised to see, when he took the
magnet out, that the needle kicked the other way. .
This started a train of thought, which finally led to a monumental discovery, which
was to become the whole basis of modern electrical engineering: it was the theory'
of ‘Electromagnetic Induction'. .

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These are heavy words, but in short they mean that, if a conductor is moved in a
magnetic field, then an 'electromotive force' (emf) - that is, a voltage - is induced in
that conductor. This is shown in Figure 4.1. It follows that, if the ends of the
conductor are connected to a load, then an electric current, driven by that voltage,
will flow from the conductor, through the load and back again.
Whereas Oersted had shown that an electric current moving in a wire gives rise to
an artificial magnetic field, Faraday showed the opposite - that if a wire moves in a
magnetic field an artificial charge, or voltage, will be created in that wire. Electricity
and magnetism were now firmly tied together by these two great discoveries.
Here then is the basis of electrical power generation. We start with a magnetic
field, either a natural magnet or an artificial electromagnet of Oersted's type, and
cause a conductor or a number of conductors to move past it. from which the
current can be extracted as they are moving.
Figure 4.1 shows 'Fleming's Right-hand Rule for Generators'. If the right hand is
held with the thumb, forefinger and centre finger extended mutually at right angles
as shown in the figure, then, with the magnetic field in the direction (North to
South) pointed by the forefinger and the motion of the, conductor in the direction
indicated by the thumb, the centre finger will point in the direction in which the emf
(i.e. voltage) is induced in that conductor (and in which current will flow when
connected to a load).
The magnitude of the voltage induced in the moving conductor depends on the
strength of the magnetic field and the speed of movement, and on nothing else.
Use is made of these laws and rules when considering the Principles of
Generation.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 5

FORCES ON A CONDUCTOR

5.1 CURRENT.CARRYING CONDUCTOR IN A f'v1AGNETIC FIELD


Figure 5.1 is similar to Figure 4.1 in that it shows a conductor in a magnetic field,
but in this case there is a current from an external source being passed through
that conductor.

The reaction between the current and the magnetic field through which it is passing
causes a mechanical sideways force on the conductor. If the conductor is free to
move, it will move sideways in the direction of the force. This is the basis of
operation of all electric motors.

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There is for motors a 'Fleming's Left-hand Rule' corresponding to his Right-hand


Rule for generators. If the left hand is held with the thumb, forefinger and centre
finger extended mutually at right angles, then, with the magnetic field in the
direction (North to South) pointed by the forefinger and the direction of current in
the direction indicated by the centre finger I the thumb will point in the direction of
the mechanical force on the conductor (or of its motion if it is free to move).
The magnitude of the force on the conductor depends on the strength of the
magnetic field and the strength of the current, and on nothing else.
Use is made of these laws and rules when considering the Principle of Operation
of Motors,

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

C HAPTE R. 6

INDUCTANCE

6.1 WHAT IS INDUCTANCE?


Wherever a magnetic field is produced by an electric current passing through a
circuit, that circuit displays the phenomenon of 'inductance'.
Before looking at the effects of inductance on a D.C. circuit, it will be useful to see
what is its nature by looking at a mechanical analogy.

Suppose there is a large grindstone with a turning handle (Figure 6.1). It is old, and
its bearings are stiff and rusty, giving a lot of friction. If we try to turn the handle,
even slowly, we must overcome this friction, causing heat and loss of energy at the
bearings and making ourselves hot with the effort expended.
But there is another type of opposition to our attempts to turn the wheel - its inertia.
It is heavy, and in order to accelerate it we must not only overcome friction but also
provide it with an accelerating force in order that it shall gather speed. The greater
the weight or inertia, the greater the force needed to accelerate. Also, the greater
the acceleration desired, the greater the force we must apply. (This is Newton's
Second Law of Motion.)
An electric circuit exhibits the same effects. It has resistance, and, in order for a
current to flow, a pressure in the form of a voltage is needed to overcome it.
But an electrical circuit has inertia too. It opposes, like the grindstone, any attempt
to speed up the current or to cause it to grow. And the faster it has to grow, the
greater the voltage needed to be applied, quite apart from that needed to

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overcome resistance. This inertia in an electrical circuit is called 'inductance' and is


due to the fact that any electric current causes magnetisation, and that effect is
greatly increased by the presence of iron (which magnetises easily).
Some circuits especially those without coils and without iron, have resistance but
very little inductance. They are referred to as 'resistive circuits'. Others, which have
coils, and especially those with iron such as generators, motors and transformers,
have both resistance and considerable inductance. They are referred to as
'inductive circuits'. In the fairly rare cases where the resistance is so small that it
can be neglected compared with the inductance (say the grindstone with ball
bearings) the circuit is called 'purely inductive'.
How inductance arises in a circuit due to its magnetisation and causes it to display
electrical inertia, or 'sluggishness', is explained in the following paragraphs.

6.2 ' THE INDUCTOR (OR 'CHOKE')


Faraday's Law of Electromagnetic Induction, as explained in Chapter 4 states that,
if a conductor moves in a magnetic field, an emf (or voltage) is induced in it. Such
movement need only be relative; it is equally true if the magnetic field moves past
a stationary conductor.
Movement implies change - that is to say, Faraday's Law applies also to any
conductor around which the field is changing, that is, growing or decreasing.

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Suppose there were a coil of wire through which a current is flowing, as in Figure
6.2. Then, by Oersted's principle, there is a magnetic field concentrated along its
axis. If now the current started to change - say to increase - the magnetic field
through all the turns of the coil would also be increasing. This is then a changing
field which, by Faraday's Law, induces in each turn an emf (or voltage), and its
direction would be such as to oppose the change - that is, to try to prevent the
current in this case increasing.
What happens is shown diagrammatically in Figure 6.2. A voltage V is applied
through a variable resistance R to the coil. For any given setting of R the current L
through the coil (assumed to have no resistance of its own) is given by Ohm's Law:
V
I =
R
If now R is decreased to R' with a view to increasing the current in the coil, the
increasing current gives rise to an induced voltage E in the coil in a direction
opposed to V. This induced voltage E is called the 'back-emf' of the coil.
Consequently the net voltage appearing across R' is no longer V but is now (V - E),
and, by Ohm's Law:
V-E
I =
Ŕ
Although R has been reduced to R', 1 is not proportionately higher because E
reduces the effective voltage. In other words, Ohm's Law does not seem to apply
in this case.
The back-emf E depends on the rate of change of current (~) through the coil and
on the physical construction, including the number of turns, of the coil. It is written:
di
E =
dt
As stated di / dt is the rate of change of current (positive if increasing), and L is a
property of the coil. The minus sign indicates that its direction opposes the
increasing current, so that E is then negative.
L is called the 'inductance' of the coil; for any given coil it is a fixed quantity, but it
differs From coil to coil. The presence of iron in the core increases L considerably.
Inductance is measured in the unit 'henry' (H).

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A coil carrying electric current, especially one with an iron core, becomes thereby
magnetised, and an electromagnet is a store of energy. The energy stored in a coil
of inductance L (in henrys) and carrying a current L (in amperes) is:
1/2 L /2 (joules)

(Compare the kinetic energy of a mass m moving with velocity v; it is ½ mv2.) If


ever the current in the coil is stopped, this energy has to be given up, in one form
or another.

6.3 SWITCHING AN INDUCTIVE CIRCUIT WITH RESISTANCE


A special case arises when a voltage is suddenly switched on to a circuit
containing resistance R and an inductance L (assumed to have no resistance of its
own). Before the switching no current at all was flowing. When the switch is closed
the current starts to flow and tries to build up, but this change is opposed by a
back-emf proportional to the rate of build-up and which reduces the effective
voltage to (V - E).
As the current increases, its rate of rise slows down; so therefore does the back-
emf E, and the net voltage (V - E) approaches nearer and nearer to V. Eventually
the current levels off, and, since there is now no change, there is no back-emf, and
the full voltage V appears across the resistance R, giving the steady current by
Ohm's Law
V
I =
R

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This type of current rise, shown in Figure 6.3, is known as 'exponential' and. is
found in all branches of physics where the rate of change depends on the amount
already present. In this case, where a voltage is suddenly applied to a circuit
containing inductance and resistance, the current rises, not suddenly, but at a
reduced rate, or 'sluggishly', the rate falling off 'exponentially' until it finally settles
down at a value given by Ohm's Law, namely I = V/R.

In the discussion so far the coil has been assumed to be inductive but to have no
resistance of its own (L but no R). In practice of course, all coils must have some
resistance, but it is convenient to regard that resistance as separate from the
purely inductive coil.
One aspect of this treatment should be realised. Since the back-emf depends on
the rate of change of current di/dt, any attempt to stop the current suddenly by
opening the switch causes the rate di/dt to rise steeply towards infinity, and
therefore a very large back-emf would be induced to oppose the change - it would
be many times greater than the applied voltage V. This greatly increased voltage
would appear across the open switch contacts (which could be regarded as a
resistance of very high ohmic value) and would cause severe sparking or arcing at
the switch contacts and possibly voltages dangerous to personnel.

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Therefore a d.c. inductive circuit of any size must never be simply broken by a
switch. Special precautions must be taken, one of which is shown in Figure 6.4

The inductive coil, which in practice has some resistance of its own (R1), is shunted
by another resistance (R2). In normal use the switch is closed and current flows in
parallel through both the coil and the shunt resistance, the I2 R2 energy in the latter
being wasted as heat.
When the switch is opened, the current already flowing in the coil, instead of being
stopped, finds a backward path through R2 and continues to circulate round the coil
and the shunt resistance. Eventually the stored energy in the coil will be dissipated
in heat loss in both R2 and R1 (= I2 R2 + I2 R2), and the current will fall exponentially
to zero. The rate of change, even at the beginning, is therefore quite slow, so the
back-emf is also low, and the voltage appearing across the switch contacts is quite
small and causes little sparking - it is in fact only equal to the volt-drop IR2 across
the shunt resistance at the start. The slow decay of current in the coil may however
delay the release of whatever mechanism the coil is driving, such as the opening of
a solenoid-operated valve.
A shunt resistance used in this way is often called a 'discharge resistance' because
it discharges and dissipates the energy stored in the coil and reduces contact
sparking. The greater its ohmic value the quicker the discharge of energy (i2 R2),
but the greater the 'spark voltage' (IR2) appearing across the switch contacts. It is
always necessary to make a compromise, taking into account also the time delay
for the coil's discharge.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 7

CAPACITANCE

7.1 THE CAPACITOR

A capacitor, or 'condenser' as it used to be called, is a device for storing


electrostatic energy. In the early days, when the only sources of electricity were the
electrostatic machines such as the Van der Graaf and Wimshurst, electrical energy
so created was stored in 'Leyden Jars' for future use (Figure.7.1). For many years
the property of capacitance was measured in the unit 'jar'.

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The modern condenser or capacitor is the direct descendent of the Leyden jar, and
the modern unit of measurement is the 'farad' (F). The farad is however an
extremely large unit, much too large for practical use, so the unit one-millionth of a
farad, or one microfarad (µ F), is in general use. One jar is equal to about one-
thousandth of a microfarad (0.001 µ For 10-9 F).
Care is needed to distinguish between the following:
Capacitor: the actual device for storing the energy.
Capacitance: the ability to store the energy, measured in µ F
The word 'capacity' should not be used in this connection.

The ability to store energy is best explained by looking at the construction of a


capacitor. It consists of several parallel metal plates, in flat or cylindrical form,
separated from a similar set of metal plates by a thin insulating substance such as
glass, mica or paraffin-waxed paper. These insulating layers are called the
'dielectric'. When a potential difference (or voltage) is applied across each set of
plates, a strong electric field is set up between them through the thin dielectric. The
closer the plates are together, the stronger the electric field. This field causes
electric strain in the material of the dielectric, causing it to behave like a spring,
which has been squeezed in a vice. When an external circuit is provided between
the two sets of plates - say by a wire connecting them - this electric spring is
released and gives up its energy.
Although the property of capacitance is the principal reason for providing a
capacitor, capacitance is found in many other places, often where it is not wanted.
When it exists in this way it is called 'self-capacitance'. It is particularly noticeable
in cables and overhead power lines, but it is also to be found in machine windings
and transformers - in fact anywhere where conductors are arranged close to one
another with a thin layer of insulation between. Self-capacitance exists not only
between adjacent conductors but also between conductors and earth or cable
-sheath.

7.2 CHARGE AND DISCHARGE OF CAPACITOR


The mechanism of charge can best be understood by considering the mechanical
analogy of Figure 7.2. .

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A large, rigid tank is completely full of water, which is regarded as incompressible.


Down the middle is a flexible elastic membrane. One side of the tank is connected
through a valve to a water supply under pressure, and the other to suction.
Initially the valve is closed. Both sides of the membrane are at equal pressure and
the membrane is undistorted. If now the valve is opened and water admitted under
pressure, it will flow into the right side of the t4nk and out from the left side. The
water movement through the tank itself, being over a wide cross-section, will be
small compared with the movement of water in the pipes. As the water in the tank
is displaced from right to left, so the membrane becomes distorted to the left and
stretches, imposing increasing pressure on the right-hand side. Eventually, when
the distortion is such as to produce a pressure equal to that of the incoming water,
the water flow will cease. A definite volume of water will have entered the tank on
the right-hand side, and an equal amount will have departed from the left. The
stretched membrane will be in a state of elastic strain.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The valve can now be closed, leaving the membrane in the position shown. The
right side of the tank is under pressure and the static energy is stored in the
stretched elastic membrane. Although the water can move in either direction
through the external piping, in considerable quantity in the case of a large tank,
there is no transfer of water within the tank across the membrane.

An electric capacitor (Figure 7.3) behaves in much the same way A d.c. Voltage is
applied across the two plates of a capacitor by closing battery switch' A', so that
one plate is at a higher potential than the other. The dielectric, which can be
regarded as .an 'electrically compressible' substance, is subject to a strong electric
field which puts it into a state of electric strain, just as the stretched membrane was
in a state of mechanical strain.
If the battery switch' A' is now opened, the capacitor will be left in that state of
strain - it is said to be 'charged' - and it will remain so until discharged or until it
discharges itself by internal leakage. Some large oil-filled capacitors have been
known to hold their full charge for many months.
The current entering one side and leading the other side of the capacitor is the
'charging current', exactly akin to the water entering one side and leaving the other
side of the tank.
If switch 'B' is now closed, the two plates are short-circuited together, and the
charge on the positive plate is conveyed back to the negative, driven by the
dielectric 'spring' unwinding. The stored energy has been released, and the
dielectric has relaxed.

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The amount of energy that could be stored in the water tank analogy depended on
the volume of water and the elastic properties of the membrane. In the case of a
capacitor the amount of energy that can be stored depends on the total plate area,
on their distance apart and on the electrical properties of the dielectric used.
Taking these into account, the ability of any given capacitor to store electric energy
is called its 'capacitance', symbol C.
If the given capacitor has a capacitance of C farads, and a voltage V is applied
across it, the amount of electrostatic energy stored is
1/2CV2 joules
(This should be compared with the magnetic energy 1/2LI2 stored in an inductance
(see Chapter 6), or with the kinetic energy 1/2mv2 stored in a moving mass.)
The water analogy showed that passing the water in and out through pipes and
under pressure caused the tank to store energy, and on reversal to allow the
stretched membrane to relax. Similarly passing a current into a capacitor 'charges'
it and causes it to store electric energy; reversing that current discharges it and
recovers the energy (Figure 7.4-).

The analogy can be taken a little further. If the water pump were reversed so that
water enters the tank from the left and leaves it from the right, the membrane
would simply stretch to the right until its pressure balanced the incoming pressure
from the left. Similarly, if the charging current is reversed (Figure 7.4), the left plate
of the capacitor would become positive and the right negative. The electric field
across the dielectric would still be present but reversed in direction and would still
be in a state of electric strain.

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So it is possible, in general, to charge a capacitor in either direction, and it will


store the same amount of energy (depending on the voltage) in either case: this
energy is 1/2CV2.
An exception to this statement applies to electrolytic capacitors, which, for
chemical reasons, may not be reverse-charged. These capacitors consist of a
single spiral aluminum foil coated with a very thin film of aluminum oxide, which
acts as the dielectric. The electrolyte itself (ammonium borate) acts as the second
'plate' and makes contact with the metal case. The very thin dielectric film allows
the 'plates' to come very close to each other and so to increase the capacitance
greatly. In fact the electrolytic capacitor has a far greater capacitance, size for size,
than the conventional type and is now widely used, especially in electronic circuits.
However, any attempt to reverse the polarity will destroy the oxide film, and their
application is therefore limited. The polarity of such capacitors is clearly marked on
them to prevent their reverse connection. One suitable use for them is for
smoothing a rectified a.c. circuit, where the d.c. Polarity is always maintained.
Figure. 7.5 shows a capacitor, capacitance C, charging from a d .c. source V
through a resistance R.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

When the switch is closed (Figure. 7.5(a)) the capacitor is at first without charge,
which means that there is no potential difference, or voltage, across its plates. At
the instant of closing therefore, the full applied voltage V appears across the
resistance only, and, by Ohm's Law, the current I through it is V/R; this flows round
the loop and into the capacitor and is therefore the initial charging current of the
capacitor.
After a short time (Figure, 7.5,fb)) the current has produced some charge in the
capacitor - suppose it has acquired a voltage E. This must be in a direction to
oppose the applied voltage V and to reduce its effectiveness; it is very similar to
the back-emf in an inductance when the current is rising (see Chapter 8).
The effective voltage trying to charge the capacitor is now reduced to (V - E), with
E growing all the time. This is the voltage appearing across the resistor, so the
charging current I is falling steadily. This is once again the classic case of the rate
of charge depending on the amount present, which, as in the inductive case, gives
an exponential voltage/time curve, as shown in Figure 7.5(c).
The voltage-charge (E) on the capacitor rises exponentially until it eventually
equals the applied voltage, at which point E = V, the charging current stops and
the charge voltage remains steady at the value V.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

If a capacitor is charged, and is then switched to discharge through a resistance,


the voltage would decay exponentially towards zero, and the discharge current
would follow the same pattern (Figure--7.6).

7.3 CAPACITORS IN PARALLEL AND SERIES


The behaviour of capacitors when placed in parallel or series is best explained by
considering how the energy is disposed between them.

Parallel
If a voltage V is applied to, say, three parallel capacitors each of capacitance C,
then the full voltage is applied to each, and the energy stored by each. is !/2CV2
(Figure 7.71). The total energy stored by the three is therefore three times this,
namely 3/2CV2 .

If C' is the capacitance of the equivalent capacitor which stores the same total
energy, then this energy will be 1/2C'V2

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

To generalise, the capacitance of a single capacitor equivalent to n in parallel is n


times that of each individual capacitor, assuming that they are of equal value.

Series
If a voltage V is applied to, say, three series capacitors each of capacitance C,
then one-third of the applied voltage will appear across each (Figure 7.81).
Therefore the energy stored by each is

The total energy of the three is therefore three times, or 1/6CV2.

If C' is the capacitance of the equivalent capacitor which stores the same total
energy, then this energy will be 1/2C'V2
To generalise, the reciprocal capacitance of a single capacitor equivalent to n in

series is n times the reciprocal capacitance of each individual capacitor, assuming


that they are of equal value. It should be noted that the equivalent capacitance of
series capacitors is smaller than that of the individual elements.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

Summary
The total capacitance of capacitors in parallel add directly:

But that of capacitors in series add inversely:

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 8

D.C. POWER

8.1 POWER UNITS

Power is defined as the rate of using (or providing) energy and, in the electrical
world, is measured in the unit 'watt' (W).
In the mechanical world of hydraulics, power is the product of pressure and volume
flow. In modern SI units pressure is measured in Newton’s per square metre
(N/m2) and volume flow in cubic metres per second. The product of these two

The electrical equivalent- of pressure is the volt, and the electrical equivalent of
hydraulic flow is the ampere, so that the power in watts is the product of voltage
and current - that is

Where V is measured in volts and I in amperes; W is then in watts.

These are two alternative forms for power when only I and R, or when only V and
R, are known.

In earlier years the power output of electric motors was measured in 'horsepower'
to align them with mechanical engine practice. Many motor nameplates are still
marked in 'hp', but more and more are now being marked in kilowatts (kW).

The kilowatt used in this case is the equivalent of the mechanical power output of
the motor. Horsepower and kilowatts are directly related:

1 hp = 0.746kW (= 3AkW approximately)

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The horsepower in this case is British horsepower. (Some Continental countries


use a slightly different unit, known as the 'metric horsepower', which is equivalent
to 0. 735kW, a difference of about 1 1/2%.)

Special care is needed when referring to the power of motors. Motors are rated by
their mechanical output (hp or kW), but, because no motor is 100% efficient, its
electrical power input, also measured in kW, is always greater than its mechanical
power output. Because both may be measured in kilowatts. Confusion can easily
arise. When it is desired to distinguish between mechanical output and electrical
input, suffixes 'm' and 'e' are often used: thus output is kWm- and input kWe. Their
ratio is the efficiency of the motor, thus:

Power - that is, the rate of producing, absorbing or transmitting energy - is in the SI
system always measured in watts or, more usually, kilowatts. It occurs in fields
other than electricity and mechanics. For example energy can be produced
thermally in boilers or reactors, or chemically in batteries or by burning fuel. The
power being developed is still measured in kilowatts and would be distinguished by
suffixes 'kWth ' or 'kWch '.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

CHAPTER 9

USEFUL FORMULAE

D.C. CIRCUITS AND OHM'S LAW

INDUCTANCE

CAPACITANCE

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

RESISTANCES IN SERIES AND PARALLEL

D.C. POWER

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

INTRODUCTION
The aim of this unit is to explain the operation of a capacitor and an inductor when
supplied with A.C. both individually and in combination with resistors.

A.C. AND THE INDUCTOR

The previous unit showed the effect of applying D.C. to an inductor. The back EMF
across the inductor falls from maximum to zero and the current rises from zero to
maximum. A.C. is a form of continuously switching D.C. The diagram and the
graph (see Figure 6-1) show the effect of supplying A.C. to an inductor. The
voltage waveform leads the current waveform by 90°. When the voltage is
maximum the current is zero. When the current is maximum the voltage is zero
and so on. The faster the A.C. changes (the higher the frequency) the greater the
back EMF which is produced. The back EM F reduces the current. The alternating
current resistance provided by the coil is called INDUCTIVE REACTANCE (XL)
and is given by the formula
XL = 2 π f L Ohms.
XL = Inductive reactance (Ohms)
L = Coil inductance in Henrys (H) f = Frequency in Hz
π = Mathematical constant (3.142).

This formula must be remembered.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

A.C. AND THE CAPACITOR

The previous unit showed the effect of applying D.C. to a capacitor. The charging
current starts at a maximum and falls to zero and the voltage across the capacitor
starts at zero and rises to a maximum. The effect is the exact opposite to an
inductor. The diagram (see Figure 6-2) shows the effect of supplying A.C. to a
capacitor. This time the graph shows the current leading the voltage by 90°. When
the current is maximum the voltage is zero and so on.
The faster the A.C. changes (the frequency) the less time the capacitor has to
charge so the current through the device increases. The A.C. resistance
(reactance) of a capacitor (Xc) goes down as the frequency goes up and is given
by the formula.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Inductor-Resistor Combination

Figure 6-3 shows the series and parallel circuits of an RL combination. Calculating
the unknown values of Vs and Is is difficult because the current and voltage
waveforms through the inductor are 900 apart.

A simple line diagram is used to illustrate the problem. From the diagram we get
the following formulas. These must be remembered.
The total A.C. resistance, IMPEDANCE (Z) for a series circuit is given by the
formula:

The parallel circuit using the standard parallel formula is

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Capacitor-Resistor Combination

Figure 6-4 shows the series and parallel circuits of an RC combination. The
formulas for the total A.C. resistance (IMPEDANCE) of the above circuits follow the
same principle as for the resistance and inductor circuits to give:

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

RL and C in Combination

Figure 6-5 shows the series and parallel circuits for an RLC combination. In this
case the reactance of the reactive parts oppose each other to give the formulas.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

Resonance
When the value of XL equals the value of XC then XL – XC = 0. So the formula for
impedance changes to:

Therefore Z = R for both circuits


This effect is called RESONANCE. At one frequency the circuit i: only resistive.
At resonance;

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The frequency (f) is called the RESONANCE FREQUENCY of the circuit. It


produces a circuit that is purely resistive.
This circuit is useful because it is used to select one frequency from all others. A
range of these circuits is used to select a television channel or radio station. Each
channel transmits at a different frequency to stop interference.
Let's take as an example the radio guide in the Gulf News. The parallel circuit used
to get Dubai FM 92 will have a resonance frequency of 92 MHz, Capital Radio
100.5 MHz, Abu Dhabi 810kHz etc.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

SUMMARY OF IMPORTANT FORMULAS

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The simplest form of a capacitor. It consists of two conducting plates separated by


an insulator (dielectric). When a voltage (V) is applied across the plates the
insulator will take in a charge and produce an electric field between the plates. The
charge (Q) taken in is given by this equation
Q = CV
C is called the CAPACITANCE of the device. The unit of measurement is the
FARAD (F).
Q The total charge stored has a unit called the COULOMB (C). V Is the voltage
applied across the plates. Total charge is also given by the equation
Q = AMPS. SUPPLIED x SECONDS
The electrostatic energy in a capacitor is given by the equation

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

KIRCHHOFF'S LAWS
Kirchhoff's laws are extensions of Ohm's law. You must remember them. They will
be used in the next unit on series and parallel circuits:

First Law

"The sum of electric currents flowing into a point (X) in an electrical circuit equals
the sum of the electric currents flowing out of that point". Thus from Figure
I1 + I2 = I3 + I4

Second Law
"The sum of the voltages around a circuit must equal the supply EMF"

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

SUMMARY OF IMPORTANT FORMULAS

OHM'S LAW
V = IR
I=V/R
R=V/I
POWER = I V = I2 R = V2/ R Watts
ENERGY = AMPS x VOLTS x SECONDS Joules
1 kWh = 3.6 MJ

KIRCHHOFF'S LAWS
First Law:
At a point in a circuit: Currents in = Currents out

Second Law:
Supply EMF = Sum 'of voltages around the circuit.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

BASIC ELECTRICITY

AMMETER IN SERIES

CURRENT is the flow of electrons (negative charges). The symbol for current is I.
Current flows from a negative potential to a positive potential but convention states
that it flows from a positive potential to a negative potential. In this course we will
use conventional flow. The unit of current is the ampere and the symbol for ampere
is A. Current flows through a component. You measure the value of current
through a component, by placing an ammeter in line (series) with the component.

VOLTMETER IN PARALLEL

VOLTAGE is the force that drives the current around a circuit. The symbol for
voltage is V. The unit of voltage is the volt and the symbol-for volt is V. If current
flows through a component it creates a volt drop across that component You
measure the voltage across a component by placing a voltmeter across (in parallel
with) the component.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

RESISTANCE is the opposition to current flow around a circuit. The symbol for resistance
is R. the unit of resistance is the ohm and the symbol for ohm is n. to measure resistance
you turn the supply off and remove the component from the circuit. Then, and only then,
can you connect an ohmmeter across the component.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

BASIC ELECTRICITY

OHM'S LAW
This states that the voltage across any resistor is proportional to the current flowing
through that resistor. If you know two of the values the third can easily be found by
using the formula-
V= I x R
Remember that the voltage must be in volts, the current in amperes and the
resistance in ohms. This formula is very important and you will use it often during
this course.
POWER is the product of current and. voltage. Different components have different
power ratings. The symbol for power is P. The unit of power is the watt and the
symbol is W. To calculate power you need to know two of the other values.
Remember when doing calculations to use the basic units (amps, volts and ohms).

Question
A 10-kilohm resistor is connected across a 20-volt supply, how much current flows
in the circuit?
Answer By Ohm's law
I=V/R
V = 20 volt
R = 10 000 ohms
I = 20/10000 A I = 0..002 A I=2mA

Answer The current is 2 milliamperes

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

ALTERNATING AND DIRECT CURRENT

Direct Current is the current we get from a battery or cell. Direct current flows only
in one direction. The abbreviation for direct current is dc and so to write six volts
direct current you write 6 Vdc.

Alternating Current or ac changes its direction of flow continuously. It changes


direction many times in one second. The rate at which it changes its direction is
called the frequency. The abbreviation for frequency is f. The unit of frequency is
the hertz, abbreviated to Hz. One hertz is the same as one change in direction
every second.

Alternating current is usually in the shape of a sine wave (sinusoidal) but can be
any shape, as long as it goes above and below zero. The waves shown have the
same frequency as they go positive and negative at the same rate.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

It is possible to get pulsating dc. This current will go up and down but as it does not
go through zero it is not ac.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

RESISTOR
Most resistors today are colour coded. They have different colour bands on them that will
tell us the value of resistance, Most have three bands for the value and a fourth band for
their tolerance. The tolerance tells you how near to the nominal value (the value as stated
by the bands) the resistor should be.

Resistors come in different power ratings, 1/8 W, 1/4 Wand 1/2 W being the most
common.

When you connect resistors in series the total resistance increases. The total
resistance of a series circuit is equal to the sum of the individual resistances.

If you connect them in parallel then the resistance will decrease. This is because
there are more paths for the current in a parallel path and so the resistance to
current flow decreases as you put more parallel branches. To find the resistance of
a parallel circuit the reciprocal rule is used.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

Before measuring resistance, turn the power off. Take the resistor out of circuit in
case anything is in parallel with it. If there is anything in parallel you will get a low
reading. Always start with your meter on the highest range and work down.

COLOUR BANDING

The diagram shows a colour coded resistor. The colour code is there to show you
the resistance of the resistor. Reading from left to right, the first and seconds
bands indicate a number, (eg. if the first colour band is 4 and the second colour
band is 7 then the number is 47). The third band is the multiplier in power form,
(eg. 103). The fourth band indicates the tolerance of the resistor (eg. ± 5%). The
numbers to match the colors are internationally fixed and are given below.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

WHEATSTONE BRIDGE
The Wheatstone bridge is widely used in instrumentation to measure resistance
accurately. It is also used to show changes in the resistance of sensors used to
measure pressure, level, temperature, etc. The following notes explain the basic
principle of the Wheatstone bridge. Practical applications will be shown later in the
training.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Bridge Circuit

The Wheatstone Bridge

The Wheatstone bridge circuit consists of two very accurate (standard) resistors
(R1, & R2) called the ratio arms. There is an accurate variable resistor (Decade Box
R3). A very sensitive ammeter which will detect very small currents (called a
Galvanometer (G)) is connected across points D and B. A supply voltage is
connected across points A and C. There are also two terminals to connect an
unknown resistor Rx across the points A and B.
The value of the unknown resistor is given by the equation.

The value of the unknown resistor is found by adjusting the value of the variable
resistor until the galvanometer reads zero. This is called the balanced position so
that at balance when I3 = 0

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

This is the balance equation for a Wheatstone bridge and must be remembered.

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 55 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

SUMMARY OF IMPORTANT FORMULAS

Resistors in Series
Rt = R1 + R2 + R3 etc.

Resistors in Parallel
1/ Rt = 1 / R1 + 1/ R2 + 1/ R3 etc.

Wheatstone Bridge
Rx = Ratio Arms x Decade Box Value.

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 56 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

INTRODUCTION
The aim of this unit is to explain the operation of a capacitor and an inductor when
supplied with A.C. both individually and in combination with resistors.

A.C. AND THE INDUCTOR

The previous unit showed the effect of applying D.C. to an inductor. The back EMF
across the inductor falls from maximum to zero and the current rises from zero to
maximum. A.C. is a form of continuously switching D.C. The diagram and the
graph (see Figure 6-1) show the effect of supplying A.C. to an inductor. The
voltage waveform leads the current waveform by 90°. When the voltage is
maximum the current is zero. When the current is maximum the voltage is zero
and so on. The faster the A.C. changes (the higher the frequency) the greater the
back EMF which is produced. The back EMF reduces the current. The alternating
current resistance provided by the coil is called INDUCTIVE REACT At-JCE (XL)
and is given by the formula

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

A.C. AND THE CAPACITOR

The previous unit showed the effect of applying D.C. to a capacitor. The charging
current starts at a maximum and falls to zero and the voltage across the capacitor
starts at zero and rises to a maximum. The effect is the exact opposite to an
inductor. The diagram (see Figure 6-2) shows the effect of supplying A.C. to a
capacitor. This time the graph shows the current leading the voltage by 90°. When
the current is maximum the voltage is zero and so on.
The faster the A.C. changes (the frequency) the less time the capacitor has to
charge so the current through the device increases. The A.C. resistance
(reactance) of a capacitor (Xc) goes down as the frequency goes up and is given
by the formula.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Inductor-Resistor Combination

Figure 6-3 shows the series and parallel circuits of an RL combination. Calculating
the unknown values of Vs and Is is difficult because the current and voltage
waveforms through the inductor are 900 apart.

A simple line diagram is used to illustrate the problem. From the diagram we get
the following formulas. These must be remembered.
The total A.C. resistance, IMPEDANCE (Z) for a series circuit is given by the
formula:

The parallel circuit using the standard parallel formula is

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 59 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Capacitor-Resistor Combination

Figure 6-4 shows the series and parallel circuits of an RC combination. The
formulas for the total A.C. resistance (IMPEDANCE) of the above circuits follow the
same principle as for the resistance and inductor circuits to give:

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

RL and C in Combination

Figure 6-5 shows the series and parallel circuits for an RLC combination. In this
case the reactance of the reactive parts oppose each other to give the formulas.

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 61 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

Resonance
When the value of XL equals the value of XC then XL – XC = 0. So the formula for
impedance changes to:

Therefore Z = R for both circuits


This effect is called RESONANCE. At one frequency the circuit i: only resistive.
At resonance;

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 62 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The frequency (f) is called the RESONANCE FREQUENCY of the circuit. It


produces a circuit that is purely resistive.
This circuit is useful because it is used to select one frequency from all others. A
range of these circuits is used to select a television channel or radio station. Each
channel transmits at a different frequency to stop interference.
Let's take as an example the radio guide in the Gulf News. The parallel circuit used
to get Dubai FM 92 will have a resonance frequency of 92 MHz, Capital Radio
100.5 MHz, Abu Dhabi 810kHz etc.

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 63 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

SUMMARY OF IMPORTANT FORMULAS

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 64 of 72


ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

THE ELECTRIC CURRENT AND MAGNETIC FIELDS


When a current is passed through a conductor it will produce a magnetic field, as
shown in the diagram.

The magnetic field around a conductor can be increased by increasing the current.
However, a better method of increasing the magnetic field produced by electricity
is to make a solenoid. A solenoid is made by coiling insulated wire around a
cylinder. The greater the number of turns in the coil, the greater the magnetic field
produced (see Figure 3-1).

When a current is passed through the coil, the magnetic field is concentrated. This
field has a pattern similar to a bar magnet with N and S poles as shown.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

The Solenoid Valve


The solenoid valve is an on-off device used to control the flow of liquids and gases
through piping. When the supply voltage is applied to the coil, the solenoid is
energised. It attracts the valve plunger and the valve opens. When the solenoid is
de-energised the return spring closes the valve. A typical solenoid valve is shown

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

SOLENOID APPLICATIONS
The Relay
A typical relay is shown

The relay consists of a solenoid and contacts. When the solenoid is energised it
attracts a piece of iron (the armature) which changes over a set of contacts. The
magnetic core of the solenoid is made of a material, which is magnetic only when
current flows, through the coil (a temporary magnet). When the coil de-energises
the return spring pulls the armature back and the contacts return to their normal
positions. Relays operate using A.C or D.C supplies. The coils have many turns of
small diameter insulated wire. This gives a strong magnetic field from a small
energising current.

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

INTRODUCTION
Explained the rules to be used when dealing with resistive circuits. The
calculations can be carried out using either D.C. values or A.C RMS. Values. The
results will be the same. This is not true when inductors and capacitors are
included in a circuit. This unit will explain what happens when D.C is applied to an
inductor and capacitor.

D.C AND THE INDUCTOR

Figure 5-1 shows D.C applied to an inductor via a switch. The graph below shows
what happens when the. Switch is closed.

At the moment the switch is closed the build up of the magnetic field in the coil
produces a back EMF which opposes the applied EMF. The starting current is
zero. When the magnetic field is steady the back EMF is zero. The current is a
maximum and is limited only by the winding resistance of the coil. The time it takes
to reach maximum current flow depends on the ratio of the coil inductance to its

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

winding resistance. Because of this effect relay coils and the solenoids of
electrically operated valves have increased resistance. This reduces excessive
hold on currents.
If the switch is open the field in the coil collapses and a high voltage is produced.
When the switch is open this high voltage can destroy the switch contacts by
sparking. Therefore special circuits must be used to protect the switch and the
connected supply voltages. These circuits will be explained in Industrial Electronics
II.

Note: -
1. The above principle is used to ignite the fuel of a gasoline engine. The voltage
produced when the circuit of an energised coil is broken is used to make a spark
across the plug fitted in the cylinder.
2. An energised coil stores energy in a magnetic form. The energy stored is given
by the equation
W = 1/2 L I2

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

D.C. AND THE CAPACITOR

Figure 5-2 shows D.C applied to a capacitor. Switch A closed and switch B open
charges--the capacitor. Switch A open and Switch B closed discharges tt1e
capacitor. The graph below shows what happens when the switches are operated.

Circuit Operation
Charging:

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

When switch A is first closed the current flow into the capacitor is only limited by
the loss resistance of the insulator. As the capacitor charges the current flow will
fall to zero and the voltage across the capacitor will equal the supply voltage. This
means that a charged capacitor is an open circuit to D.C.

Discharging:
When switch 8 is closed the discharge current is in the opposite direction to the
charging current. It will start at maximum and then fall to zero as the capacitor
voltage falls to zero.

CAPACITOR TIMING CIRCUITS


The capacitor is often used in electronics as a timing circuit. An explanation of the
basic principle is given in Figure 5-3. We will look at how this circuit can be used
during more advanced work in later units.

Figure 5.3 shows a basic timing circuit using the voltage across the capacitor (C).
The switch is closed and when the voltage (V) rises to a set value the timing unit
operates. It is normal to use what is called the time constant for the circuit. The
time constant is given by the equation.
TIME CONSTANT (T) = RESISTANCE (R) x CAPACITANCE (C)
(SECONDS) (OHMS) (FARADS)
The voltage across the capacitor will be 63.2% of the D.C supply voltage at the
time constant (T = RC).

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ADMA OPCO, Basic Training Fundamental-1 (E-01) Electrical

Example
Question:
A 1 MQ resistor is connected in series with a 100 μF capacitor and supplied with
D.C. Find the time taken for the capacitor to reach 63.2% of its maximum value
after the supply is switched on.

Solution:
The time to reach 63.2% of the supply voltage is the time constant of the circuit
RC.

T.C = 1 X 106 Ω x 100 x 10-6F


Time Constant = 100 seconds.

VTC (Rev. 1) Page 72 of 72