We explain the examples of electrical conductors with definition, Band theory, metals used as conductors, semiconductors and most important electrical conductors. Lets Read Physics….
Electric conductors examples of electrical conductors
An electrical conductor is a material capable of efficiently carrying an electrical current . This is because its resistance is very small, so that a charge can travel almost freely through it. The substances that present this characteristic to a greater extent are metals .
What is electrical conductivity?
The electrical conductivity is the defining quality of the electrical conductors. It is the ability of materials to allow the passage of electric current through them. Its unit of measurement is the Siemens per meter (S / m). The phenomenon of electricity transport can be explained by means of the so-called band theory. examples of electrical conductors
Band Theory examples of electrical conductors
Band Theory states that delocalized electrons move freely through the “bands” that are formed by the overlap or overlap of molecular orbitals. That is why it is not possible for electricity to travel in salt crystals and plastics; they do not have delocalized electrons, their molecules are stable and ordered.
Metals are characterized by their high electrical conductivity. In a metallic crystal, the atoms are packed very close to each other, so the energy levels of each atom are affected by those of neighboring atoms, resulting in orbital overlap.
These orbitals have energies so similar that they are best described as a band. The full and similar energy levels form the valence band .
The upper half of the energy levels correspond to the delocalized and empty molecular orbitals of electrons, which are formed by overlapping orbitals. This set of nearby empty levels is called the driving band .
A metallic crystal must be considered as a set of positive ions immersed in a sea of delocalized valence electrons. The great cohesion force that results from delocalization is, in part, responsible for the hardness that occurs in most metals.
Because the valence band and the conduction band are adjacent to each other, the amount of energy required to promote a valence electron to the conduction band is almost nil, negligible.
Once here, the electron can move freely through all the metal , since the conduction band has no electrons. This freedom of movement explains the fact that metals are good conductors , that is, they are capable of conducting electrical current .
Metals used as conductors
Copper (Cu), aluminum (Al), and silver (Ag) are good conductors . When these materials are charged in some small region, the fast charge is distributed over the entire surface of the conductor. examples of electrical conductors
If you hold a copper bar in your hand and rub it with wool or any skin, the bar will not attract a small piece of paper. This could suggest that a metal cannot be loaded. On the other hand, if the copper bar is held with a lucite handle and then rubbed, the bar will remain charged and will attract the piece of paper.
This can be explained by observing that in the first case, the electrical charge produced by friction passes easily from the copper to our hand and, finally, to the earth. In the second case, the lucite insulating handle prevents the flow of the charge towards the ground. examples of electrical conductors
The popularity of copper as a conductor is due to the balance between its cost and its efficiency as a conductor.
Most important electrical conductors
The silver (Ag) and gold (Au) are the best electrical conductors there. However, since its application is very expensive, it is copper (Cu) that, instead of them, is used to build electricity supply lines in cities.
The aluminum (A’s) is another of the most important conductors, used for purposes such as simple experimental and home. Being one of the lightest metals, it is easy to handle and to place in conductive arrangements in a convenient arrangement.
The most widely used conductors besides metals are electrolytes . Electrolytes are aqueous solutions of ionic substances, such as salts , acids, and bases . Ionic substances dissociate in water, that is, when they come into contact with this liquid they separate into their anions and cations, particles that carry negative and positive charges respectively.
This makes electrons available to transport electric charges. The journey is not going to be made through a solid, as is usually observed in metals, but in the liquid medium of the aqueous solution. This liquid system will become an electrochemical cell if two rods of different metals and an electric current are introduced from a source, such as a battery.
Semiconductors examples of electrical conductors
The semiconductors are a class of materials whose electrical properties are between those for the insulation and conductors. The silicon (Si) and germanium (Ge) are known examples of semiconductors that are frequently used in the manufacture of electronic devices. These two materials are metalloid in nature .
Examples of electrical conductors
- Gold (Au)
- Silver (Ag)
- Copper (Cu)
- Platinum (Pt)
- Aluminum (Al)
- Nickel (Ni)
- Tungsten (W)
- Zinc (Zn)
- Chromium (Cr)
- Cadmium (Cd)
- Lithium (Li)
- Stainless steel
- Lead (Pb)
- Iron (Fe)
- Palladium (Pd)
- Aqueous solution of Sodium Chloride (NaCl)
- Aqueous solution of sulfuric acid (H 2 SO 4 )