In this lab we explored how non-traditional materials can be used to build circuits and how to build series and parallel circuits.
For the first part of the lab I was tasked with creating a switch that I could use to light an LED. I decided to make a switch using card stock and copper tape. To make a more unique switch, I folded the paper into an origami crane. Then, I placed copper tape on the undersides of both wings. The circuit is completed when the wings of the paper crane are both pressed down towards the body of the crane.
The second part of the lab entailed making a circuit entirely of paper. I though about how I could fold the paper circuit differently to create a circuit. I ended up folding it like an accordion so that when the paper was unfolded the circuit was open and when the paper was folded the circuit was completed and the LED lit up. I also thought of how I could make my paper circuit into a greeting card so I added a drawing a two dogs that would meet when the paper was folded. Also, where the LED is located I drew two halves of a heart that would be completed and light up when folded.
The final part of the lab helped us better understand the differences between series and parallel circuits and how to build them. A circuit in series is when two or more components share a common node and the current flow through them is the same. For circuits in series, voltage drops across each component.
A parallel circuit is when components share two common nodes. A parallel circuit would be more reliable for connecting several LEDs because the current is divided among each path and the voltage stays the same.