Series  Parallel Resistances the Combination
Whenever we work with circuits in the real world, they are seldom as
straightforward as a simple series or parallel circuit. Normally, they are a
combination of the two, called a
SERIESPARALLEL
circuit. While they look forbidding at first, you must keep in mind that ALL
circuits can be broken down into smaller parts. They can be made simpler to
work with. Such is the case with the SeriesParallel circuit.
If you look at the example on the right, it has 3 resistors and 1 battery. R _{ 1 } and R _{ 2 } are both 10 Î© in parallel.
We can say that:
R
_{
1&2
}
= 5Î©.
We also have R _{ 3 } in the circuit, which is 20Î©. Once we have combined the 2 parallel resistors, we have a simpler circuit.... 2 series resistors. R _{ 1&2 } and R _{ 3 } . If we add the value of these two resistors, we come up with
R
_{
Total
}
=R
_{
1&2
}
+R
_{
3
}
.
So R
_{
Total
}
=5Î©+20Î©=25Î©.
Then if we know the voltage, we can find the current through the entire circuit, and through each individual resistor. Go ahead and try plugging in a voltage (like 25V) and finding the currents. You'll be surprised at how simple it is.
Let's try another example. In the circuit on the right, we have 3 resistors again. But this time, they are configured differently. Do you see how you would combine them for the total resistance? First, you must add the 10 Î© resistors by adding them. This is simple because they are in Series.
If you look at the example on the right, it has 3 resistors and 1 battery. R _{ 1 } and R _{ 2 } are both 10 Î© in parallel.

1

1 1
 + 
R _{ 1 } R _{ 2 }
We can say that:
We also have R _{ 3 } in the circuit, which is 20Î©. Once we have combined the 2 parallel resistors, we have a simpler circuit.... 2 series resistors. R _{ 1&2 } and R _{ 3 } . If we add the value of these two resistors, we come up with
Then if we know the voltage, we can find the current through the entire circuit, and through each individual resistor. Go ahead and try plugging in a voltage (like 25V) and finding the currents. You'll be surprised at how simple it is.
Let's try another example. In the circuit on the right, we have 3 resistors again. But this time, they are configured differently. Do you see how you would combine them for the total resistance? First, you must add the 10 Î© resistors by adding them. This is simple because they are in Series.

10 Î© + 10 Î© = 20 Î©.

1

1 1
 + 
R _{ 1 } R _{ 2 }