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ERIC Number: EJ860304
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Dec
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 2
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
"Dissection" of a Hair Dryer
Eisenstein, Stan; Simpson, Jeff
Physics Teacher, v46 n9 p532-537 Dec 2008
The electrical design of the common hair dryer is based almost entirely on relatively simple principles learned in introductory physics classes. Just as biology students dissect a frog to see the principles of anatomy in action, physics students can "dissect" a hair dryer to see how principles of electricity are used in a real system. They can discover how engineers solve problems such as how to vary between low and high heat and fan speed by simply moving the position of a single switch. Principles of alternating versus direct current, series and parallel circuits, electrical safety, voltage dividing, ac rectification, power, and measurement of resistance and continuity all come in to play.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A