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Electronics >> Basics of Electronics >> Ohm's Law

What is Ohm's Law?

Ohm's law describes the relationship between voltage, V , which is Ohm's Lawtrying to force charge to flow, resistance, R , which is resisting that flow, and the actual resulting current I .

The relationship is simple and very basic:

Thus large voltages and/or low resistances produce large currents. Large resistors limit current to low values.

Almost every circuit is more complicated than just a battery and a resistor, so which voltage does the formula refer to? It refers to the voltage across the resistor, the voltage between the two terminal wires. Looked at another way, that voltage is actually produced by the resistor.

The resistor is restricting the flow of charge, slowing it down, and this creates a traffic jam on one side, forming an excess of charge with respect to the other side.

Any such charge difference or separation results in a voltage between the two points, as explained above.

Ohm's law tells us how to calculate that voltage if we know the resistor value and the current flow. This voltage drop is analogous to the drop in water pressure through a small pipe or small nozzle.

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