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Lab 2: Ohm’s Law – Voltage Dividers

Part 1: Resistor Values


• You should have been given 3 resistors by the TA. Using the color code described above,
determine the value and tolerance for each resistor

Resistor 1: Orange, White, Yellow, Gold


R1 = 39 x 104 ± 5% = 390 kΩ ± 5% Measured Value: 387 kΩ

Resistor 2: Brown, Grey, Orange Gold


R2 = 18 x 103 ± 5% = 18 kΩ ± 5% Measured Value: 17.8 kΩ

Resistor 3: Grey, Red, Red, Gold


R3 = 82 x 102 ± 5% = 8.2 kΩ ± 5% Measured Value: 8.05 kΩ

• Use the Ohmmeter on your lab bench to measure the actual resistance of each resistor. Are
the actual values within the tolerance limits as indicated by the color codes?

370.5 kΩ ≤ R1 ≤ 409.5 kΩ R1 = 387 kΩ


17.1 kΩ ≤ R2 ≤ 18.9 kΩ R2 = 17.8 kΩ
7.79 kΩ ≤ R3 ≤ 8.61 kΩ R3 = 8.05 kΩ

Part 2: 2 Resistors in Series

• Build a circuit with 2 resistors in series.


• Measure the voltages Vdd and Vx.
• Do your measurements agree with the voltage divider equation?

Vdd = 5.0 V Vx = 3.44 V

𝑉𝑑𝑑 5𝑉
I= = = 𝟎. 𝟏𝟗𝟑 𝒎𝑨
𝑅1 + 𝑅2 8.05 𝑘Ω + 17.8 kΩ

𝑉𝑥 = 𝐼𝑅2 = (0.193 𝑚𝐴) ∗ (17.8 𝑘Ω) = 𝟑. 𝟒𝟒 𝐕

***Measured and calculated values for Vx are equal***


Part 3: 2 Resistors in Parallel in Series with 1 Resistor

• Now build this circuit, and measure Vdd and Vx.


• Solve the voltage divider equation backwards to obtain the equivalent resistance of R2 and
R3 .
• Also solve for the equivalent resistance using the formula for resistors in parallel.
• Compare the values you obtain.

Vdd = 5.0 V Vx = 3.39 V

𝑅23 𝑉𝑥 𝑅1 (3.39 𝑉)(8.05 𝑘Ω)


𝑉𝑥 = 𝑉𝑑𝑑 ( ) 𝑅23 = = = 𝟏𝟕. 𝟎𝟐 𝒌𝛀
𝑅1 + 𝑅23 𝑉𝑑𝑑 − 𝑉𝑥 5.0 𝑉 − 3.39 𝑉

1 1
𝑅𝑒𝑓𝑓𝐿 = [ + ] = 𝟏𝟕. 𝟎𝟐 𝒌𝛀
17.8 𝑘Ω 387 𝑘Ω

Part 4: Switch/Resistor in Parallel

• What are the measured values for Vx when the switch is opened and closed?
• Why would you expect these values? Give a written explanation or show using equations.

Measured Values for Vx:


Open: 3.44 V
Closed: 0.00 V
When the switch is open, the resistors are in series, as in Part 2.
When the switch is closed, a short circuit is formed, and no current flows
through R2.