Introduction: Electrify Your World

Picture of Electrify Your World

The following information is a single lesson in a larger project. Find more great projects here.

Return to Previous Lesson: Simulate and Create

Lesson Overview:

Now we'll learn about electricity basics!

Step 1: Introduction

In this lesson you'll learn the basics about how the Circuit Scribe editor and modules work as well as learn about current, voltage, and resistance.

The Simulator works hand in hand with the the Circuit Scribe and modules. Each module and footprint can be placed in the editor and connected with the virtual conductive ink pen. The circuit can be simulated to show you how it will behave in real life. You can then print out your circuits pattern and use the Circuit Scribe pen and modules to bring your circuit to life!

  1. Click the Gear icon on the top right of the screen.
  2. Replace the "The Unnamed Sketch" with something more descriptive so you can remember it Well done!!

Step 2: Understanding the Modules

There are four different types of modules in the Circuit Scribe toolbox. Each module type can be distinguished by the color of its connectors.

Outputs, such as the LED or Buzzer, are colored yellow.

Input modules, such as the SPST switch, are colored red.

Power modules, like the 9V battery adaptor, are colored blue.

Connection modules, like the NPN transistor, are gray/clear.

  1. Click the Modules button. New parts should appear at the bottom.
  2. Browse the modules, noticing which ones are Inputs, Outputs, Power, and Connectors.
  3. Choose the 9 Volt Battery module by clicking and dragging to the center of the screen.
  4. With the module highlighted, press “R” or the Rotate button to change the orientation of the module.
  5. Use the modules overlay again to place a Bi-LED on the canvas.

Step 3: Learning About Current

An electrical circuit is a complete loop that electrons flow through (this flow is called current). Along its path, current can light up LED’s, turn motors, and sound buzzers. The flow of current can be modified by adding resistors or inputs.

We can create a simple circuit using an LED and a 9 volt battery .

Current will flow from the positive (+) end of the battery, through the silver ink and LED , to the negative (-) end of the battery.

  1. Select the Conductive Pen tool on right of the screen.
  2. To connect the components click on the positive (+) foot of the battery and then click on a foot of the Bi-LED.
  3. Connect the negative (-) battery terminal to the other side of the LED. Don’t let your two lines touch!

Step 4: Simulating Your Circuit

The Simulator allows you to see how your circuit will work in real life!

  1. Click the Simulate button to see your circuit in action.
  2. If you have connected the circuit properly you should see the LED light up.
  3. To stop the simulation click the Simulation button again.

Step 5: Printing a Template

When you are happy with the result you can take your online design to the physical world by printing a template.

This allows you print a template to create the circuit with a Circuit Scribe pen and modules on paper.

  1. Click the Paper Settings tab to view the paper outline. Use the dropdown menu to select your paper size (Letter or A4).
  2. Make sure your circuit is inside of the red box on the paper. You can move multiple modules by selecting them (SHIFT + click) then clicking and dragging.
  3. Once you are happy with the layout of your page, click the Download PDF button.
  4. Now you can open up the PDF and print your circuit template!

Step 6: Naming Your Circuit

Your project is saved automatically but don’t forget to name your circuit after you’ve finished so you can easily find it later.

In the settings page you can also add a description and tags to help other user quickly find your project.

  1. Click the Gear icon on the top right of the screen.
  2. Replace the "The Unnamed Sketch" with something more descriptive so you can remember it Well done!!

In the next lesson you will learn about conductivity!

Next Lesson:Electrical Conductivity

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