Understanding Parallel Circuits: Definition, Formulas, and Applications

Parallel Circuits – The subject of physics teaches us the reasons for the occurrence of everyday phenomena that can make someone curious about it. It can be said that there is no incident or event that cannot be explained by this branch of natural science.

Sinaumed’s can ask a number of things about the phenomena around you, and you can be sure that these phenomena can be explained using physical theory. Starting from the existence of a rainbow, why water can boil, to the reasons behind the functioning of an electronic object.

Of course, you must already know the main reason why an electronic object can work, namely because of electricity. Even so, electricity itself cannot work alone, and requires a component that can channel its energy.

One such component is a circuit. And in this article, we will study one form of circuit behind the functioning of a number of electronic objects around us, namely parallel circuits.

Sinaumed’s will study definitions, some formulas, and any objects that apply parallel circuits to work properly. So, read this article to the end, Sinaumed’s.

Definition of Parallel Circuits

Parallel circuit is one of two types of electrical circuits that function to distribute electrical energy to an electronic object. Another circuit that also has the same function as a parallel circuit is called a series circuit.

Even though they have the same function, the applications of these two sets are different from each other. A parallel circuit in which there are a number of circuits, can be said to be more complicated when compared to a series circuit which only consists of one circuit.

In this article, Sinaumed’s will only focus on understanding the basics of parallel circuits in a simple, yet thorough manner. Meanwhile, discussion of the series will be explained in another article.

Coming back to parallel circuits, the components connected in this circuit are connected along multiple paths and each component has a voltage equal to the voltage across the network. The electric current through the network is also equal to the sum of the currents through each component.

However, if two or more components are connected in parallel, they have the same potential difference (voltage) across their ends. The difference that has the potential to occur in all components can be said to be of the same magnitude, so these differences are also fairly identical.

Moreover, the same amount of voltage will be applied to all the components in a parallel circuit. While the total current contained in a parallel circuit is the sum of the currents through each component.

Parallel circuits and series circuits are one of the topics that will always be found in physics subjects, especially in high school. You will definitely study this topic more deeply than when you were in elementary school. The book “Smart Book Physics for SMP/MTs Grades VII, VIII, IX” can help those of you who are in middle school if you have difficulties not only regarding circuit topics, but also in physics lessons in general.


Parallel Circuit Formula

Of course, almost every topic of discussion in physics requires calculations in order to find out exact numbers about something. Without exception, this also applies to the calculation of electric circuits, both parallel circuits and series circuits.

Earlier it was mentioned that parallel circuits are slightly more complicated than series circuits, because of the many components in them. Even so, Sinaumed’s doesn’t need to worry about learning the formulas for this parallel circuit, because if you are used to it, then you will be more fluent in understanding these formulas.

Not only that, you will also learn a few explanations about a number of figures who contributed to the field of electricity, so that their names are enshrined as units of several components of electrical circuits. Check out the explanation below.

1. Flow

The current in an electric circuit has the symbol “I”, and has the unit “amperes”. These units were taken from a French scientist named André-Marie Amperé, who played a major role in developing theories in the field of electrodynamics.

The formula regarding the current itself actually comes from Ohm’s Theory, which will also be alluded to when studying the resistance formula. Basically, the formula for calculating current in a parallel circuit can be written as follows:

Total = I 1 + I 2 + I 3 + …..…. I n = V ( 1 / R1 + 1 / R2 + 1 / R3 + ……… 1 / Rn )

2. Voltage

The voltage in an electrical circuit has the symbol “V”, and has the unit “volt”. This unit was taken from an Italian scientist named Alessandro Volta, who during his lifetime managed to discover various things about the field of electricity, one of which was the theory of electric voltage.

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The formula regarding self-voltage is basically not that difficult to understand, because the sum of the voltages in a parallel circuit will be the same for each of its components. Basically, the formula for calculating the voltage in a parallel circuit can be written as follows:

V = V 1 = V 2 = V 3 = V 4 = ……… V n

3. Barriers or Resistors

Barriers or resistors in electrical circuits have the symbol “R”, and have units of “ohm”. This unit is taken from a German scientist named Georg Ohm, who is also the creator of the theory of resistance or resistors.

The formula regarding the resistance or resistor itself is basically found by adding the reciprocal of the resistor number of each component and taking the reciprocal of that amount, so that the total will always be less than the resistor value. Basically, the formula for calculating resistance or resistors in parallel circuits can be written as follows:

1 / RTotal = 1 / R1 + 1 / R2 + 1 / R3 + 1 / R4 ……… 1 / Rn

Resistance or resistor itself is quite related to current, so sometimes we also need to look for electric current based on the information we find from the amount of voltage and resistance or resistor. For this, we will again use Ohm’s Theory, namely:

I = V / R

In addition, there is also such a thing as electrical conductance when calculating resistance or resistors. Electrical conductance is the phenomenon by which electric current flows through materials such as metals and non-metals. Electrical conductance has the symbol “G” and has “siemens” units.

Electrical conductance has a complementary relationship with resistance or resistors in parallel circuits, so it can be found in some cases. Basically, the formula for calculating the electrical conductance in a parallel circuit can be written as follows:

total = G 1 + G 2 + G 3 + G 4 + …..…. G n

4. Inductor

Inductors in electrical circuits have the symbol “L”, and have units of “henry”. These units were taken from a scientist from the United States named Joseph Henry, who in his time succeeded in discovering electromagnetic theory to be applied to various types of equipment.

The formula regarding the inductors themselves can basically be found using the principle that the total inductors is equal to the reciprocal of the sum of the reciprocals of the respective inductances. Basically, the formula for calculating inductors in parallel circuits can be written as follows:

1 / L Total = 1 / L1 + 1 / L2 + 1 / L3 + 1 / L4 ……… 1 / Ln

However, if the inductors are located in the vicinity of each other’s magnetic field, this formula cannot be used because there is a trade-off in each inductance. The magnetic field resulting from this mutual inductance is usually symbolized by the letter “M”.

The symbol “M” depends on how the magnetic fields in the inductor affect each other. The existence of the “M” symbol in the calculation of this inductor can be said to be quite complicated to understand, so it will not be discussed further in this article.

5. Capacitor

Capacitors in electrical circuits have the symbol “C”, and have units of units “farads”. These units were taken from a British scientist named Michael Faraday, a figure who was credited with discovering a number of theories and objects, especially in the fields of electromagnetics and electrochemistry.

The capacitor formula itself is basically the same as finding voltage, namely adding up the numbers contained in each capacitor component in an electric circuit. Basically, the formula for calculating capacitors in a parallel circuit can be written as follows:

total = C 1 + C 2 + C 3 + C 4 + …..…. Cn _

Studying physics means that you are ready to deal with different formulas for each topic. However, if Sinaumed’s wants to try to learn these formulas slowly, it’s not impossible that you will master various kinds of physics formulas in the future. If you are still in high school and want to try to memorize and learn formulas, you can try reading the book “SMA Collection of SC Physics Complete Formulas”.


Examples of Objects Using Parallel Circuits

In our daily life, there are several objects that use parallel electrical circuits, including:

1.LED light

Light-Emitting Diode or also known as LED lights in Indonesian, is a type of lamp that will shine brighter, and often twinkle. The working principle of the LED lamp itself also applies parallel circuits, especially twinkling LED lights.

Sinaumed’s noticed, when one light bulb goes out, the other light bulbs don’t necessarily go out too. This is because the switch in the LED lamp has special branches, which is the principle of parallel circuits in an electronic object. In other words, the LED light can flicker and will not turn off even though there are parts that are not lit.

2. Traffic Lights

Traffic lights are also an example of an electronic object that functions using the parallel circuit principle. This object has a role in regulating traffic, by turning on a number of different color lights, namely red, yellow and green, as a guide for vehicles regarding when to stop and when to go.

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Inside the traffic light, there is a detector or sensor that will move the switch and function to regulate when the lights should be on or off. These switches will work without being affected by other switches.

3. Fire Alarm

The third and final object to be discussed as an example of applying parallel circuits in everyday objects is the fire alarm. As the name implies, this object serves to inform someone of a fire in a building through a loud sound like a siren.

The way a fire alarm works is simply that it uses a kind of sensor to detect the presence of smoke which can potentially cause a fire. Fire alarms in buildings are usually connected from one floor to another, and may not necessarily go off on another floor if no smoke is detected on that floor.

Other Famous Physicists

In addition to the figures mentioned above, of course there are many more physicists who have contributed greatly to the advancement of physics. The theories and ideas they find help people to understand the reasons behind a phenomenon in everyday events.

Not only that, the theories and ideas that these physicists have developed have also succeeded in inspiring other scientists and inventors to apply their thoughts, and develop new theories and even create objects based on these theories.

Below, there are 3 physicists who succeeded in changing the world because they succeeded in discovering theories that had never been thought of before. This discussion about physicists is the last session in this article, and it is hoped that it will inspire Sinaumed’s to study and work harder like them.

1.Galileo Galilei

Technically, Galileo Galilei was not only a physicist but also an astronomer. Even so, this man from Italy continued to produce various kinds of findings throughout his life, to the extent that he was nicknamed the “Father of Modern Physics” because of his discoveries and theories that broke science at that time.

In addition to pioneering heliocentrism, namely the fact that the earth and other planets revolve around the sun, Galileo Galilei also succeeded in discovering several kinetic theories, which were later developed and perfected by other physicists after his time ended.

2. Isaac Newton

This physicist figure also managed to shock the world because of one of the theories he found. Isaac Newton, who is a man from England, is the developer of a number of well-known physical theories that are not only focused on physics, but also mathematics and chemistry.

A number of theories that Isaac Newton succeeded in developing include the theory of acceleration, the theory of optics, the theory of mechanics, and the theory of gravity. This scientist is also credited with developing the theory of calculus in the field of mathematics. He is considered one of the most influential physicists of all time.

3. Albert Einstein

It certainly won’t be complete if we don’t discuss the “Father of the Theory of Relativity”, Albert Einstein. This figure from Germany, although better known for his theory of relativity, apparently did not only develop that one theory, but there were other theories that Einstein developed throughout his life.

Call it the theory of brown movement, the theory of the Planck-Einstein relationship, and other Einstein’s theories which are as well known as the theory of relativity, namely the theory of mass-energy or E = mc². Besides Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein is also considered by many to be the most influential scientist in the world.

Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity is considered one of the greatest breakthroughs in physics. It’s not uncommon for ordinary people who don’t understand physics to be interested and want to try to find out about this theory. Sinaumed’s, who is also interested in studying the theory of relativity, can read a book by Albert Einstein himself, namely the book “Relativity: Special and General Theory”.

The discussion of physicists above closes the article regarding parallel circuits. After learning all about parallel circuits, starting from the definitions, formulas, and also the tools, we hope that Sinaumed’s will be more helpful in understanding this topic.

The key to physics is to always practice and be willing to understand topics in depth. If you feel that this article is still lacking, Sinaumed’s can try to find other articles or books to add to your understanding of the topic of parallel circuits.

If you want to find books that are suitable for the topic of parallel circuits, apart from the recommended books above, sinaumedia, #SahabatUnlimits, also has various other books to satisfy your curiosity about this topic which can be found at sinaumedia.com . Remember Sinaumed’s, you will get more knowledge and information #MoreWithReading.