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How electrons flow in a circuit?

  1. Apr 6, 2014 #1
    I have pictured I model about how electrons move in a circuit,

    What happens first is that electrons are built up on both the cathode and anode but since both of them are made of different materials, the built up electrons on one of the two poles will be more than that on the other, which creates a potential difference, however there is an electron cloud in the conductor connected between the two poles, the electron cloud is affected by the electric field of both the electrodes once the wire is connected, I could say that both electrodes exert a repulsive force on the electron cloud, but fortunately the repulsive force of one of the electrodes will be more than that of the other due to the difference of quantity of charge, which will make the electron cloud move from high repulsive region to the low repulsive region causing a flowing current. The transfer of energy between the two poles is about to be the speed of light, but electrons themselves move at speed 0.02m/sec. I hope that model is right, but I would like someone on the forum to provide me with more accurate information, thanks in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 6, 2014 #2


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    No, the anode is positively charged with respect to the anode and that's what creates the potential difference ( there is no build up of electrons on the anode)

    If we are talking about ... for example a battery, the electrolyte causes a flow of ions towards the anode and electrons towards the cathode, creating the potential difference.

  4. Apr 6, 2014 #3

    If zinc is the anode and copper is the cathode, zinc loses electrons and it turns into ions leaving its electrons on the electrode. While copper is the cathode it also loses electrons and turns into ions leaving its electrons on the electrode, but zinc has more tendency to form ions than copper
    So the anode (zinc) become negatively charged with respect to the cathode, consequently electrons move from the anode to the cathode on connecting a conducting wire. That's what I mean..
  5. Apr 8, 2014 #4
    Dou you know hall effect?? . these experiments are very interesting for your topic
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