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The discovery of electricity was a game-changer for humans, and it transformed the way we live. We use electricity for various chores, like cooking, washing, gaming, etc. Have you ever imagined life without electricity? We are blessed to have electricity as it simplifies our daily hassles to a great extent. But have you ever wondered about the working of electricity? This chapter will see how electrical equipment is connected to a power source electric celland the various components in an electric circuit.
When electricity is provided from power sources, only we can light up our homes, streets, offices, etc. How does a torch bulb light itself without any external connection? Well, a torch bulb lights up with the help of an electric cell. An electric cell consists of a metal cap on one side and a metal disc on another.
The side of an electric cell with the metal cap is often termed as the positive terminal, while the other is called the negative terminal. Various chemicals are filled inside an electric cell that is used to produce electricity. Once all the chemicals inside an electric cell are used, it is not functional anymore. Various companies manufacture electric cells with diverse designs. Some electric cells also possess positive (+) & negative (-) marking on them.
Just like an electric cell, an electric bulb also comprises two terminals. An electric bulb has an outer covering of glass that is fixed on a metallic base. The thin wire in the middle of an electric bulb is called the filament. The filament is further connected to two thick wires for support and completion of the circuit. A bulb connected to an electric cell completes the circuit and makes the bulb glow.
One of the thick wires is connected to the metallic base’s center, while the other is connected to the lowermost tip of the metallic base. These two connections also define the two terminals of an electric bulb. These terminals are connected to the terminals of an electric cell, and you can light up the bulb. There can be various arrangements to connect an electric bulb to any external electric source.
When you connect an electric cell to an electric bulb, you connect both the cell terminals to the bulb. An electric circuit is an arrangement where both the terminals of an electric cell are connected to any electric equipment terminals, allowing the current to flow through the circuit. The electricity will only pass when the circuit is complete. The direction of the flow of current is said to originate from the positive terminals of an electric cell to its negative terminal.
An electric bulb only glows when the circuit is complete. Sometimes, an electric bulb doesn’t glow even when the circuit is complete. This may happen due to the breakage of the filament of the bulb that helps it glow. Such bulbs are termed ‘fused bulbs’ as electricity doesn’t pass through them.
Have you used an electric torch? There is a switch provided on an electric torch that helps in switching on and off the torch. A switch is a simple device that helps in breaking or connecting any electric circuit. We also use switches for turning on/off our household electrical equipment. When we don’t have to use electricity, an electric switch can break the current flow, thus conserving electricity.
You can also design a simple switch by connecting the two terminals of a battery to wires and then connecting a safety pin in between. Make sure that the safety pin is movable. Whenever you touch the safety pin with wires on both sides, the circuit is complete. If not, then it is broken.
Why did we use a safety pin in the above section to make an electric switch? It is because a safety pin is a conductor, and the current can pass through it. Electric conductors and insulators have specific electric properties. Conductors are those materials through which current can pass. Conductors are used in making electric wires, the interior of electric equipment, etc.
Insulators are those materials that do not permit electric current to pass through them. Some of the common examples of insulators are glass, oil, quartz, rubber, air, etc. Insulators are also equally important to humankind as they help manufacture the outer covering of various electric equipment. Without insulators, it would have been very tough to handle the conductors we might be exposed to current.
In this chapter, we understood the concepts of electricity & circuits. We also understood electric components such as a switch, bulb, etc. Learning about electric components, insulators, conductors, etc., will help us safely use electricity for our day-to-day needs. You can also conduct various activities mentioned in this chapter to explore more about ‘Electricity and Circuits.’
Q. What are electricity and circuits?
Electricity is the flow of electric charge to transfer energy from one point to another. Electricity helps in powering up our household appliances, office lights, etc.
The path/arrangement through which electricity flows to transfer electrical energy from source to equipment is called an electrical circuit.
Q. What is an electric circuit for class 6?
An electric circuit defines the flow of current. It connects the power source (battery) and electric equipment. A circuit can be completed with the help of wires.
Q. How does electricity work in a circuit?
The electricity flows from the positive to the negative terminal of a power source in a circuit.
Q. What are the 3 requirements of a circuit?
An electric circuit requires a power source, connecting path (wires), and electric equipment like a bulb, fan, etc.
Q. What is the purpose of using an electric switch class 6?
An electric switch helps in breaking the electric circuit and then connecting it again.
Q. What is a switch class 6?
A switch helps in stopping the flow of current in an electric circuit.
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