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Fundamentals of Electricity

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Series and Parallel Circuits - Overview

There are several types of circuits. Their names describe the way the circuit is wired, or its main function. Elementary types of circuits include:

  • series
  • parallel
  • open
  • short

More elaborate circuits include:

  • control
  • power
  • branch
  • dedicated
  • feeder
  • distribution circuits
  • transmission circuits.

The most elemental circuit configurations are the series circuit and the parallel circuit. In a series circuit, all loads are in a single line between the source and return. In a parallel circuit all the elements are connected between the source and return lines in multiple paths.