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Homework Help: Variable Resistor Behaviour In Potential Dividers

  1. May 2, 2008 #1
    Ok, I'm doing an electronics assignment at the moment and we'e just been getting in to first order filters and the like. As a little demo/experiment thing, we were asked to measure the voltage drop across a single variable resistor being powered by a 9V DC supply. We were then told to twist it and see what happened. This resulted in a very sudden jump in the voltage read by the oscilloscope.

    We then measured the voltage drop over the same variable resistor but in a potential divider circuit. On turning the dial, the rise and fall in voltage is much smoother.

    Could anyone please explain the reason for this change in behaviour? Thanks in advance.
  2. jcsd
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