# What changes with the electrons when amperage is higher?

If a transformer steps down voltage from 120v to 24v, the amperage is going to be 5 times higher on the 24v side.What is going on with the electrons in the 24v side that is causing the amperage to multiply.

Are the electrons themselves going faster when traveling between atoms, or are they sitting by each atom for a shorter time before switching to the next atom?

Or is it just that there are 5 times the amount of electrons moving through the second wire?

### 7 Answers

- FiremanLv 72 months agoFavourite answer
In a metal, some of the outer electrons in each atom are not bound to the individual atom as they are in insulating materials, but are free to move within the metal lattice. These conduction electrons can serve as charge carriers, carrying a current. Metals are particularly conductive because there are many of these free electrons, typically one per atom in the lattice. With no external electric field applied, these electrons move about randomly due to thermal energy but, on average, there is zero net current within the metal. At room temperature, the average speed of these random motions is 10^6 metres per second.Given a surface through which a metal wire passes, electrons move in both directions across the surface at an equal rate. As George Gamow wrote in his popular science book, One, Two, Three...Infinity (1947), "The metallic substances differ from all other materials by the fact that the outer shells of their atoms are bound rather loosely, and often let one of their electrons go free. Thus the interior of a metal is filled up with a large number of unattached electrons that travel aimlessly around like a crowd of displaced persons. When a metal wire is subjected to electric force applied on its opposite ends, these free electrons rush in the direction of the force, thus forming what we call an electric current."

When a metal wire is connected across the two terminals having a voltage difference, the source places an electric field across the conductor. The moment contact is made, the free electrons of the conductor are forced to drift toward the positive terminal under the influence of this field. The free electrons are therefore the charge carrier in a typical solid conductor.

For a steady flow of charge through a surface, the current I (in amperes) can be calculated with the following equation:

I = Q/t

where Q is the electric charge transferred through the surface over a time t. If Q and t are measured in coulombs and seconds respectively, I is in amperes.

More generally, electric current can be represented as the rate at which charge flows through a given surface as:

I = ΔQ/Δt

- Anonymous2 months ago
Move electrons move.

- Andrew SmithLv 72 months ago
The number of electrons available to move are largely constant at a very high number ( except in semiconductors ). When you add a single electron at one end it puts a force on another and another and another in turn. A wave propagates and a DIFFERENT electron pops out the other end. If you put in more electrons then there are more of these collisions. It is a simplification to say the one electron pushes just one other electron but it is a reasonable approximation to understand the motion. As long as there are plenty of free electrons all we are doing is increasing the number of collisions when we increase the current ( which also increases the loss of energy according to ohms law)

- PhilomelLv 72 months ago
Energy cannot be created nor destroyed, It can only change form.

The power into the transformer always equals the power out.

If you measure the power of the secondary and the power of the primary you will find they are different. The difference is the heat.

assume we have an ideal Transformer with no heat loss.

The output is 24V, the input is 120V. the output current is 5A. The turns ratio is 5:1.

The output resistance is 4.8 ohms.

The input current is 5/5=1A.

The output power is 5*24=120W

The input power is 120/1=120W

If the output resistance changes, the input will also change. If the resistance changes to 9.6 ohms, the output current will change to 2.5A.

The power will change to 24*2.5=60W

The input current will change to .5A and the power will be 120*.5=60W.

All of it is dependent on the output resistance or impedance.

It can get complex If the power changes, the heat loss also changes.

I hope this Helps you see it.

- What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
- oubaasLv 72 months ago
..in the secondary winding there are 5 times the amount of electrons moving through the primary winding

- mark_pocLv 62 months ago
You are thinking about it all wrong. The only thing that determines the current in the secondary is the load. If there was no load on the secondary then there would be no current in the primary or secondary (in a perfect transformer).

So the current at anytime in the secondary is determined by ohm's law: 24 / R. The load on the secondary determines the current in the primary, which will always be 1/5 of the secondary current with this transformer. There is magnetic coupling between the primary and secondary windings. Read up on transformer theory.