Potential difference is defined as the work that must be performed to move a charge from one point to another. For example there must be a potential difference in a current for a charge to move between two points. It is also described as the potential energy difference per unit charge or voltage. The unit of potential difference is the Volt (V).

Electricity[edit | edit source]

In the field of electricity, potential difference in the form of (voltage) is one of the primary elements of electricity generation. Power is a function of the potential charge difference between two sides of a battery (Voltage) and the rate at which charge is flowing through this battery (Current). In an analogy with flowing water, the voltage would be the water pressure driving the water flow. The current would be the flow of water through cross-section area of the pipe. The potential charge difference is created by inducing a higher concentration of electrons on one side of the battery; the difference in charge is voltage. Going back to the water analogy, the forced height difference by a dam for example, makes a higher concentration of water on one end and that voltage is what results when it flows. The attractive force that pulls the electrons to the positive charges is what allows for the movement of charge that creates power.


Interwiki links[edit | edit source]

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Authors Richard Moog, Jaran Ellermeyer
Published 2007
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