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What are the "ground" on a electronic circuit? Answered

I have checked many schematics and on all of them I see GND (ground) and nothing going to the VSS of the power supply. Is GND mean that it's connected to the negative (VSS) or is it more complex than that? What I am supposed to do if a schematic have both negative and grounding? Thank you.



Best Answer 9 years ago

In electric circuits, "ground" is a term applied to a reference voltage for the circuit, that is, against which all other voltages in the circuit are measured. In traditional circuits, ground is electrically neutral (said to have 0V), but this does not necessarily have to be the case.

For example, say you have a circuit that is essentially a black box with 3 wires sticking out (all stacked vertically): the bottom one is "ground" or 0V, the middle one measures 25V (that is, it's 25V higher than ground) and the top one is 50V. You can arbitrarily call the middle wire ground, and now, the bottom wire (which used to be 0V) is -25V (as 0V - GND = 0 - 25 = -25), the middle wire is now 0V, and the top wire is 50V. This method can be used creatively in some cases that might otherwise require multiple voltage supplies in a circuit.

So, ground is just a reference point for the rest of the circuit (hope that makes sense).


Thanks purduecer, you really clarify it and you did help me understand it. Unfortunately, I made a typping error, I mean on a electronic circuit not electric, but still I had no idea what it was in either of those. I would like somebody to confirm the anwser of thecookiemonster, thank you. (I'm really new to this)

. In a lot of cases ground = negative = 0 V = earth potential