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Electrical Resistance

Author: E.E. Kimberly

When water flows through a pipe, the walls of the pipe offer resistance to the flow. Similarly, when an electric current flows through a conductor, the substance of the conductor offers resistance to the flow. The ohm1 is the unit of measurement of electrical resistance, and the conventional symbol for it is Ω. A current of 1 ampere will flow in a conductor having a resistance of 1 ohm when a difference of potential of 1 volt is applied. The flow of electric current through a conductor produces heat and increases the temperature of the conductor.

1 A column of mercury having a mass of 14.4521 grams, a length of 106.3 centimeters, a temperature of 0C, and a uniform cross-section has a resistance of 1 ohm.

Last Update: 2010-11-22