This page last changed on Nov 26, 2007 by cmcintyre.

Electricity Glossary

An analogy is a comparison between two situations or things that are alike in some ways but different in others.

Attraction (verb: attract) is when two things pull toward each other

A circuit is a loop of conductive material that allows electric current to flow.

A capacitor is a device that can store charge.

A conductor is a material that allows the free passage of charges. Most conductors are metals like iron, copper, and aluminum.

Electric charge is a basic property of matter. Particles can have positive, negative, or no charge.

Electric current is the flow of electric charge

An electron is a basic particle with a negative charge

An insulator is a material that does not allow the passage of charges. Most non-metals are insulators, such as wood, plastic, air, stone, stone, glass, and clay.

Lightning is the flow of charges through the air from cloud to cloud or from cloud to ground.

Net charge is the difference between positive and negative charges. If they are equal, the net charge is zero and the object is electrically neutral.

Neutral means having no net electrical charge, because the number of positive and negative charges is equal.

Positively charged means having more positive than negative charges, so that the net charge is positive.

Negatively charged means having more negative than positive charges, so that the net charge is negative.

A proton is a basic particle with positive charge.

Repulsion (verb: repel) is when two things push away from each other.

Static electricity is electric charges that aren't moving. [note: link should be "static"]

Charged is having more of one type of charge than the other, so that the two types of charge are not equal. For example, if an object has 100 positive charges and 102 negative charges, it would be negatively charged, with a net negative charge of 2.

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