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Investigating The Effect Of Resistance On A Capacitor Circuit

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Simran Singh Kooner 11HA

Investigating The Effect Of Resistance On A Capacitor Circuit

Aim: to see what affects the rate of discharge on a capacitor.

PLANNING

Hypotheses:

  1. The bigger the capacitance, the longer amount of time it will take for the capacitor to discharge through a resistor.
  2. The bigger the resistance, the longer amount of time it will take for the capacitor to discharge.

Therefore I expect that capacitance is directly proportional to the rate of capacitor discharge and also that resistance is directly proportional to the time taken to discharge a capacitor

Capacitors and Capacitance:

A capacitor is an electrical device that can store energy in the electric field between a pair of closely spaced conductors or plates which are separated by an insulator. When voltage is applied to the capacitor, electric charges of equal magnitude, but opposite polarity, build up on each plate. The larger the capacitance the more charge it can store. Capacitace is the ability of a capcitor to store electrical charge and it is measured in farads (F). The capacitance used in our investigation, however, was measured in microfards (µF).

Resistors and Resistance

A resistor is a component of an electrical circuit which produces resistance, or in simpler terms, it restricts the flow of electric current in a circuit.

...read more.

Middle

0

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57

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57.5

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58

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0.311

58.5

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59

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0.297

59.5

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60

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60.5

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0.276

61

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61.5

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62

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62.5

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0.254

63

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0.247

63.5

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64

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64.5

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65

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65.5

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66

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66.5

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This second table below shows the affect of resistance on the rate of discharge. It shows how fast a 470µf capacitor decays with 5 different resistors. The table would be too big if the results were shown at every 0.1 seconds.

...read more.

Conclusion

The results do support my conclusions, as it is very clearly shown on the graphs. The first batch of results show that the largest capacitor discharges for the longest amount of time while the smallest capacitor discharges for the smallest amount of time.

The second batch of results too supports my second conclusion, as it is visible from the graph that the 1k resistor allowed the 470µf capacitor to discharge fully within 10 seconds, but the 47k resistor allowed the 470µf capacitor to discharge over 90 seconds.  

Further Work:

If this investigation had been carried out on an industrial scale, then the experiment could be repeated except this time even smaller or larger sized capacitors. These could then be used for designing computers or even if producing a microchip.

I would repeat the investigation for a minimal of 20 times on a school scale for the investigation to be furthered. This would ensure that the results I can collect will be even more accurate and also the hypotheses would be proved further once these results have been collected and plotted on a graph.

...read more.

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