Related topics: energy · solar energy · power · megawatts · renewable energy

Collaboration sparks new model for ceramic conductivity

As insulators, metal oxides—also known as ceramics—may not seem like obvious candidates for electrical conductivity. While electrons zip back and forth in regular metals, their movement in ceramic materials is sluggish ...

Chili-shaped device could reveal just how hot that pepper is

Some people love spicy food—the hotter, the better. Others go out of their way to avoid the palate-singeing burn of capsaicin, the compound that gives chili peppers their kick. Now, researchers have developed a portable ...

Pinning down the ampere with a supersensitive particle detector

From light bulbs to cell phones, all electronic devices in everyday life rely on the flow of electrons to function. Just as scientists use meters to describe the length of an object or seconds to measure the passage of time, ...

Researchers create a single-molecule switch

A team of researchers has demonstrated for the first time a single-molecule electret—a device that could be one of the keys to molecular computers.

New device powers wearable sensors through human motion

The advent of inexpensive wearable sensors that can monitor heart rate and body temperature, as well as levels of blood sugar and metabolic byproducts, has allowed researchers and health professionals to monitor human health ...

Ultrafast camera films 3-D movies at 100 billion frames per second

In his quest to bring ever-faster cameras to the world, Caltech's Lihong Wang has developed technology that can reach blistering speeds of 70 trillion frames per second, fast enough to see light travel. Just like the camera ...

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Electricity (from the New Latin ēlectricus, "amber-like"[a]) is a general term that encompasses a variety of phenomena resulting from the presence and flow of electric charge. These include many easily recognizable phenomena, such as lightning and static electricity, but in addition, less familiar concepts, such as the electromagnetic field and electromagnetic induction.

In general usage, the word 'electricity' is adequate to refer to a number of physical effects. However, in scientific usage, the term is vague, and these related, but distinct, concepts are better identified by more precise terms:

Electrical phenomena have been studied since antiquity, though advances in the science were not made until the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Practical applications for electricity however remained few, and it would not be until the late nineteenth century that engineers were able to put it to industrial and residential use. The rapid expansion in electrical technology at this time transformed industry and society. Electricity's extraordinary versatility as a source of energy means it can be put to an almost limitless set of applications which include transport, heating, lighting, communications, and computation. The backbone of modern industrial society is, and for the foreseeable future can be expected to remain, the use of electrical power.

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