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Advantage of High Voltage Electricity Transmission

  1. May 8, 2009 #1
    I'm supposed to write a brief essay response to this question on my unit exam, and I don't exactly understand it. Please explain it to me, and then I can appropriately write the short essay. Thanks!

    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    "The energy companies use step-up transformers to send high voltage electricity over their wires, then use step-down transformers to reduce the voltage when it enters your house. What is the advantage of transmitting the electricity at a high voltage?"

    2. Relevant equations
    This is really just a concepts question, so I don't think I need to list equations. There aren't any given values in the question.

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I don't really know why transmitting electricity at a high voltage has advantages or what the advantages are... I think it might have something to do with efficiency and/or conserving loss of charge over distances. Transformers have about the same output power (less in reality) to the input power. I think the current in sending electricity at high voltage is faster and more constant?
    Last edited: May 8, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. May 8, 2009 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Remember, you have other online resources besides asking the PF. We could try to give you hints to this FAQ, and have you figure it out over several posts, or you could do a little online reading, answer the question for yourself, and maybe just post an "is this right?" questions here.

    Try HowStuffWorks to get some insight:


  4. May 9, 2009 #3
    Thanks again! That was a really helpful link. I'll start looking there and like places more often.

    Also, I'm sorry I've been posting several questions lately. It's just that I've essentially done almost an entire semester of Physics in three weeks after taking a whole year off of Physics from sophomore year. I haven't been able to work a lot until now because of health issues, family crises, et cetera, and now the end of the semester is in 25 days and I have 11 classes to finish. The sum total of the questions I've been asking is actually pretty small compared to how many questions I've really had, hehehe. PF is a great help to me. I'll try not to exhaust it... :)
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