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rayleighconnect™ collects many electrical energy parameters. One of them is current.

What is current?

Current, in the context of electricity, refers to the flow of electric charge through a conductor. It is typically measured in amperes (A). Current is a fundamental concept in electrical engineering and plays a crucial role in the operation of electrical circuits and devices.

Current types

There are two main types of electric current:

  • Direct Current (DC): In direct current, the flow of electric charge is constant and unidirectional. That means the electrons flow continuously in one direction. Batteries and most electronic devices, such as cell phones and laptops, operate on DC power. The symbol for direct current is a straight line with a single arrow indicating the direction of flow.

  • Alternating Current (AC): Alternating current periodically reverses direction, causing the flow of electric charge to change direction. This reversal typically occurs at a fixed frequency, which is measured in Hertz (Hz). AC is the form of electricity commonly used in homes and businesses worldwide. The symbol for alternating current is a sine wave, representing the cyclical variation in voltage and current over time.

Ohm's Law

In both DC and AC circuits, the amount of current flowing through a conductor is determined by the voltage applied across it and the resistance of the conductor, as described by Ohm's Law:

I = V / R​


  • I is the current in amperes (A).
  • V is the voltage across the conductor in volts (V).
  • R is the resistance of the conductor in ohms (ΩΩ).


Current is a crucial parameter in electrical engineering as it determines the amount of power consumed by electrical devices, the heating effect in conductors, and the magnetic fields generated around conductors carrying current. It is essential to manage and control current effectively to ensure the safe and efficient operation of electrical systems.