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Resistors and Light Bulbs Lab Report

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Lab 2 Problem 4: Resistors and Light Bulbs
Ruth Nyagitari
March 8, 2016
Physics 1202W, Professor: Thomas Walsh, TA: Joshua Hitbrand
Abstract
In order to determine the similarities and differences of the electrical properties of light bulbs and resistors the relationship between the voltage across a light bulb and the current through the light bulb was compared to a resistor. A power source was used as a source of potential difference. The change in resistance was observed as well as change in the applied voltage. The voltage versus the current was analyzed using ohms law it was predicted that if voltage across a resistor increases the current through the resistor will increase as well.
Introduction
While debating about the role of electric circuits in biological systems it was argued that a light bulb may not be a good model for biological electrical energy transfer. A light bulb is easy to observe difference in energy transfer rates by observing the change in brightness. However in order to give light it’s raised to temperature higher than biological systems. Instead a resistor was suggested to be a better model for biological systems because its transfers energy out of the electric circuit without extreme behavior of a bulb. To determine the similarities and difference between use of bulbs and resistors a graph is drawn depicting the relationship between the voltage across a light bulb to the current through the light bulb and then compared to a resistor. In the experiment testing was done to determine if a light bulb is a constant resistor and how its resistance changes with current changes.
Prediction
This experiment uses the concept of direct circuit to demonstrate ohms law. Ohms law gives the relationship between the current (I) that flows through a resistor and the voltage through it. Ohms law shows that voltage is directly proportional to current. The relationship between voltage, current and resistance is shown below; I=V/R V=I X R R=V/I
It was predicted that if voltage across a resistor increases the current through the resistor will increase as well. The voltage across light bulb and the current across the light bulb were measured and manipulated to solve for resistance. The resistance from the light bulb was determined from the graph of voltage versus current. This resistance will be compared with resistance of a resistor to analyze their electrical behaviors. From the ohms law equation, the higher the current the low the resistance and the higher the voltage the higher the resistance. Through graphing it will possible to determine the resistance difference between the light bulb and the resistor.
Procedure
A light bulb was connected to power supply in a circuit using banana wires. Range of voltages was applied in order to observe the change in brightness of the light bulb. Using the digital multimeter (DMM), voltage was measured by connecting the DMM to the circuit I parallel. Current was measured too by connecting the DMM to the circuit in series. Several trials were run while manipulating the applied voltage and recording current. The circuit as set up as shown in the diagram below;

Fig 1: Assembly of circuit used in procedure.

Data
Data points were collected with varying voltages and resulting current.
Table 1: applied voltage with resulting current. Uncertainty (± 0.01) VOLTAGE (V) | CURRENT (A) | 0.00 | 0.00 | 0.52 | 0.00 | 1.92 | 0.31 | 2.69 | 0.40 | 3.38 | 0.46 | 4.10 | 0.55 | 4.94 | 0.63 | 5.46 | 0.68 | 6.40 | 0.75 | 7.21 | 0.80 | 7.58 | 0.82 |

Fig 2: graph of voltage through light bulb vs current thought light bulb

Analysis
Through comparison of the light bulb resistance which is the derivative of the function from the voltage vs current graph; y=-0.0176X + 0.179. This equation suggests that the resistance of the light bulb is not constant but is varying with different voltages and currents. In contrast with that the given resistor resistance was constant. The application of ohms law can be applied here and supports our results. Our results show that increasing voltage increases resistance of the light bulb. This is different with the resistor resistance which stays constant.

Conclusion
The results lead to a conclusion that in order to have an ideal biological energy transfer model a resistor is more appropriate than a light bulb. The resistor electrical functions displays prominent attributes that would make it a great model for measuring the rate of energy transfer in a biological system.…...

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