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To build a simple dimmer switch and to investigate the relationship between resistance in the circuit and the amount of light produced.
Resistance is calculated in an electrical circuit, like the one below, through the use of Ohm's law, and is measured in the units of ohms.
One way to think of potential difference is to imagine a pipe with water in it (instead of a wire with electric current in it).
In this electronics science fair project, you will build a simple model of a dimmer switch and test it in an electrical circuit, a pathway of electrical elements in which electric current flows.
The inner core of a pencil is graphite, which is a good conductor of electricity, but not as good as the copper wire that connects the elements of your circuit together.
Ask an adult to whittle away the wood on the side of a number 2 pencil with a pocket knife to expose approximately 9–14 cm of the graphite core within, as shown in Figure 2.
Using the ruler and a fine-point marker, make marks every 1 cm along the length of wood, next to the graphite core, and label the marks, starting with "0," at one end of the exposed graphite. Connect a red alligator clip to the red wire from battery holder (in electronics, red wires are usually used for the "positive" connection).
Connect a black alligator clip to the black wire from the battery holder (in electronics, black wires are usually used for the "negative" connection). You will connect your dimmer switch between the free ends of the red alligator clip and the yellow alligator clip. Turn off the lights and close the window blinds, if possible, in the room where you plan to do the experiment.
Now, turn on the light bulb by connecting the red and yellow alligator clips directly to each other (bypassing the pencil). Pay attention to how close, and in what orientation, you hold the light bulb relative to the light meter.
Grasp the insulated (plastic part) of the free alligator clip coming from the light source and touch the tip to various points along the graphite core and observe what happens to the lightbulb and the light meter readings. Touch the "slider" (the alligator clip coming from the light source) against the exposed graphite core above the 0 cm mark. Move the slider up 1 cm to the next mark, but leave the alligator clip coming from the 9 V battery at the 0 mark, and record the illuminance measurement from the light meter in your data table.
Calculate and record the average of your illuminance measurements for each graphite core length. Plot the graphite core length (in cm) on the x-axis and the illuminance (in lux) on the y-axis. Compared to a typical science class, please tell us how much you learned doing this project. The Ask an Expert Forum is intended to be a place where students can go to find answers to science questions that they have been unable to find using other resources. Electricians are the people who bring electricity to our homes, schools, businesses, public spaces, and streets—lighting up our world, keeping the indoor temperature comfortable, and powering TVs, computers, and all sorts of machines that make life better.
Just as a potter forms clay, or a steel worker molds molten steel, electrical and electronics engineers gather and shape electricity and use it to make products that transmit power or transmit information.
Electrical engineering technicians help design, test, and manufacture electrical and electronic equipment. You may print and distribute up to 200 copies of this document annually, at no charge, for personal and classroom educational use. Reproduction of material from this website without written permission is strictly prohibited.
If a potential of 6 volt is provided in a circuit with a resistance of 0.1 ohms, in other words the resistance is purely caused by the wire, what current will be flowing?



This module will discuss the topic of voltage and how it forces electrons through the wire.
This module will discuss the issue of resistors and how they affect the amount of current flowing in a circuit.
The power circuit of an office is supplied at 240 Volt and has the following appliances connected to it.
What would be the resistance of each item and what would be the total effective resistance of the whole circuit? Portable Van de Graaff generator, Fun-Fly-Stick, is now transparent and allows to see the inner workings of the wand plus the glowing corona discharge inside it.
Choose a dry day for these activities, since water in the air inhibits the strength of electricity created.
If you have already explored magnets and magnetism, point out the similarity of the experience. Copyright © 2005-2016 Teach Preschool Science - Permission granted to reproduce for personal and educational use only.
All activities in this unit study are presented in an easy to follow format with an active and updated web link.
Olar Nergy Cience RojectsSCIENCE PROJECTS Solar energy can be used to heat our homes, heat water, cook our food, and power our lights. Science Fair - Project IdeasScience Fair - LCEProject Ideas Little Cedars Elementary Science Fair – April Computer projects Storing the sun’s energy Power from rising air Life Science Does a magnetic field affect the growth of beans? Science Fair Project"Static Electricity - What Creates Static Charge & Static Shock? Does it get used for everything, from homework and birthday parties to dinner and board games? This illustration shows a voltage source driving a current through a resistor in an electrical circuit. The water pressure difference between two points in the pipe is, in some ways, like the potential difference between two points in an electrical circuit. The graphite does have some resistance, so it will act as the resistor in the electrical circuit. It's not as smart as you are, and it may occasionally give humorous, ridiculous, or even annoying results! Note: Only 1 pencil is required for the experiment, but buy several to account for breakage when forming the resistor.
Make sure the "+" signs on the batteries line up with the "+" symbols inside the battery holder.
Make sure the two alligator clips do not touch, or this will create a short circuit and the bulb will not light. You can make the line graph by hand or use a website like Create a Graph to make the graph on the computer and print it.
Also calculate and plot the current (in amperes) in the circuit on the y-axis for each length of the graphite core (or each resistance) on the x-axis. If you have specific questions about your science fair project or science fair, our team of volunteer scientists can help. Electricians install and maintain the wiring and equipment that carries electricity, and they also fix electrical machines. Electrical and electronics engineers may specialize in one of the millions of products that make or use electricity, like cell phones, electric motors, microwaves, medical instruments, airline navigation system, or handheld games.
These people are part of the team of engineers and research scientists that keep our high-tech world going and moving forward.


For electrical potential  to be created work has to be done.  Well work is a form of energy and is thus measured in the joule. It's time to experiment with batteries and electricity in a fun and engaging way that your children will never forget! Also this site is a participant of other affiliate programs such as eBay and other affiliate networks for advertising their products to earn advertising fees by linking their sites. If so, then the lighting above this table is the perfect candidate for a dimmer switch, a switch that you can adjust so that the lighting is dimmer or brighter.
A resistor is an electrical element or component that resists (or opposes) the flow of electrical current (the flow of electrons) in an electrical circuit.
All these elements will be connected, in series, with wire to form a loop, just as people holding hands can form a circle. You will vary its resistance (the length of the resistive pathway) and measure the resulting illuminance from the lightbulb with a light meter. The twist ties are not required, but they can help keep your circuit neat by bundling up the alligator clip leads. Use the other one as a "slider" by pressing it onto the graphite core at different points along the length of the pencil. If the reading does not go up at all, there is still too much ambient light in the room affecting the light sensor's reading. You can build a small jig (for example, out of tape and cardboard) to hold the light bulb in place if that is easier.
Record the illuminance measurement (in units lux) from the light meter in a data table, like Table 1, in your lab notebook. Our Experts won't do the work for you, but they will make suggestions, offer guidance, and help you troubleshoot. Discovery, Animal Planet, Science Channel, HD Theater, ID, Velocity, Travel Channel, TLC, Destination America and their respective logos are trademarks of Discovery Communications.
Welcome to Grades 3-5 Electricity, a multisensory and hands-on exploration of electricity and magnetism. The links bring the world to your children by providing streaming videos, interactive web sites, educational games, audio files, and more.
When you blow out your birthday candles, you'd like dim light for the most dramatic effect, but when you're doing your homework, you want the light at its brightest, so you can see clearly.
Highlights include over 20 hands-on experiments to engage your children and provide a multisensory exploration of circuits, conductors, insulators, and more! At Intellego Unit Studies, we believe in the varied learning styles and multiple intelligences of every child. When a variable resistor is used in a circuit to vary the brightness of a lightbulb, you make the resistance greater when you want a dimmer light setting and you make the resistance smaller when you want a brighter light setting. Each chapter includes current and active links to multiple videos, hands-on activities, experiments, readings, worksheets, charts, interactive websites, games, full-color high resolution graphics, and more! That's why all of our unit studies include reading and writing activities, videos, art, comparisons, drawing and painting, discussions, hands-on activities, art projects, full-color high resolution graphics, printable activity pages, and more! In this electronics science fair project, you'll investigate dimmer switches, and even build a simple model of one. Resistance is increased by increasing the length of the path of resistive material through which the electrons have to flow, and is decreased by decreasing the length of the path.



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