Series-Parallel Circuits

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Virtual Skill testing + Virtual Laboratory Experience + Links to Top Theory Sites = Best Free Online VLS.

This course is a Virtual Laboratory tutorial in electronics.  Over the last decade,  I have produced a set of free online circuit simulations and animations that constitute a interactive virtual laboratory for students studying electronics or preparing for an IT career .  My virtual interactive circuit troubleshooting exercises cover only a small sample of circuits covered in must texts or college courses. This selection of circuits ranges from simple resistive circuits thru advanced operational amplifiers, digital circuits and computers .   I believe that those who  master troubleshooting my narrow range of virtual circuits or systems will develop the skills necessary to troubleshoot a wide range of circuits and systems that they will be confronted with now and in the future.  I feel quite certain that someone who could not perform the majority of my virtual troubleshooting exercises would be in need of further training in order to become a competent electronics troubleshooter.  This person could benefit from my free virtual laboratory course. 

I provide a reading list for each topic that a student can use to learn the relevant subject matter.  This site and my virtual electronics kits test your electronics skill.  My digital simulations create screens of data in binary format that show the status of my virtual computer and many digital circuits.    





Free Class Books
(PDF files)

Electronic Concepts

Force Fields Visualized


My Free Online e-Books(Webs)

  Basic Electronics

 Electronic Troubleshooting

  Gif Circuits

Electronic Circuits with Faults 


My Free Downloads 

 Virtual electronic kits




Site Linker
Our optional reading list.
Site Linker allow me to check all the links that several of my Web site uses at a single location.






Series-Parallel Circuits

Analyzing Series-Parallel Circuit.  
We analyze series-parallel circuits in stages using the same techniques We learned in  our Series  and Parallel circuit lectures. If the network contains a string of resistors in series simply add the resistors up and call the sum R
string.  If the series-parallel circuit contains a bank of resistors in parallel.  Calculate the parallel resistance and call sum Rbank.  Redraw the the circuit.  Now you have a much simpler circuit to analyze.  Naturally if you more than one string or bank you will have to make a few more calculations before you can calculate the total resistance of the circuit.  This process is covered in must basic electronics books that have been written over the past hundred years.  Therefore, I will confine the remainder of this lecture to troubleshooting these networks.

Troubleshooting Series-Parallel Circuits.
Measure the voltage drop across all resistors located in a series string. Calculate the current through each resistor.  Use the technique discussed in Series Circuit  to test or troubleshoot  each series circuit string.  If you find a bad resistor you are done.  If the bad resistor was not in a resistor string, redraw the schematic substituting Rstring1, Rstring2 etc. for the string resistors. You now have a simplified the circuit for troubleshooting, and you have localized the failure to one of the resistors not in a series string.  


Read Chapter 5 of Electronic Concepts

Test yourself with my troubleshooting animations.  See Links to Animations below.



Links To My Animations

Serial/Parallel Circuit Simulation with Fault.
Click on Test Point Symbols, Voltage will be displayed on Top of Page.




Tutorial (Read "Resistors in Combination" and "Complicated Circuits"

Also see Series/Parallel Circuit Animations in Gif Circuits.


Next Lesson: AC circuits



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Last modified: Monday July 07, 2014.