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21.3 Kirchoff's Laws

The analysis of the flow of currents and potential difference across various parts of an electrical circuit can be done by using Kirchoff's Laws.

Kirchoff's First Law

At any junction in any electrical circuit the algebraic sum of currents is always zero. The incoming currents at the junction are considered to be negative and the outgoing currents from the junction are considered to be positive.

          Figure 1

The first law of Kirchoff is therefore a convenient representation of charge conservation.

Kirchoff's Second Law

The work done on any positive test charge 'q' in moving it around a closed loop is always zero.

where Vi is the potential difference across the ith part of the closed loop. It is obvious that Vi will be positive and negative by equal amounts around the closed loops; since V ´ q is a work done, this law is representation of the law of conservation of energy in the context of electric circuits.


21.1 Electric Current
21.2 Ohm'z Law
21.3 Kirchoff's Laws
21.4 Series and Parallel combination of Resistance

Chapter 22

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