# 13.1 Potential difference

 Page 1 / 2

## Potential difference

When a circuit is connected and complete, charge can move through the circuit. Charge will not move unless there is something to make it move. Think of it as though charge is at rest and something has to push it along. This means that work needs to be done to make charge move. A force acts on the charges, doing work, to make them move. The force is provided by the battery in the circuit.

The amount of work done to move a unit charge from one point to another point in a circuit is called the potential difference between those two points. You can think of it as a difference in the potential energy of the unit charge due to its position in the circuit. The difference in potential energy, called potential difference, is equal to the amount of work done to move the unit charge between the two points. Just like with gravity, when you raise an object above the ground it has gravitational potential energy due to its position, the same goes for a charge in a circuit and electrical potential energy. Potential difference is measured between or across two points. We do not say potential difference through something.

Potential Difference

Electrical potential difference is the difference in electrical potential energy per unit charge between two points. The unit of potential difference is the volt named after the Italian physicist Alessandro Volta (1745–1827) (V). The potential difference of a battery is the voltage measured across it when current is flowing through it.

The unit of potential difference is the volt (V), which is the same as 1 joule per coulomb, the amount of work done per unit charge. Electrical potential difference is also called voltage.

## Potential difference and emf

We use an instrument called a voltmeter to measure the potential difference between two points in a circuit. It must be connected across the two points, in parallel to that portion of the circuit as shown in the diagram below.

## Emf

When you use a voltmeter to measure the potential difference across (or between) the terminals of a battery, when no current is flowing through the battery, you are measuring the electromotive force (emf) of the battery. This is how much potential energy the battery has to make charges move through the circuit. It is a measure of how much chemical potential energy can be transferred to electrical energy in the battery. This driving potential energy is equal to the total potential energy drops in the circuit. This means that the voltage across the battery is equal to the sum of the voltages in the circuit.

emf
The emf (electromotive force) is the voltage measured across the terminals of a battery when no current is flowing through the battery.

You have now learnt that the emf is the voltage measured across the terminals of a battery when there is no current flowing through it and that the potential difference of a battery is the voltage measured across it when there is current flowing through it. So how do these two quantities compare with each other?

what does nano mean?
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
Bharti
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
absolutely yes
Daniel
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
Maciej
Abigail
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Anassong
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
Virgil
is Bucky paper clear?
CYNTHIA
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Harper
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
s.
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
SUYASH
What is lattice structure?
of graphene you mean?
Ebrahim
or in general
Ebrahim
in general
s.
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
tahir
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
Cied
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
China
Cied
types of nano material
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
Porter
many many of nanotubes
Porter
what is the k.e before it land
Yasmin
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
Cesar
I'm interested in nanotube
Uday
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
what is nano technology
what is system testing?
preparation of nanomaterial
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Good
The fundamental frequency of a sonometer wire streached by a load of relative density 's'are n¹ and n² when the load is in air and completly immersed in water respectively then the lation n²/na is
Properties of longitudinal waves