Potentiometer: What is this How to Use it and Its Practical Applications

A potentiometer is used in hobbyist projects as well as in consumer electronics and audio circuits. In this post, you’ll learn how it works, how to use it and what are its practical applications.

What is a Potentiometer [Construction]

A potentiometer is three terminal component. It contains a base with three terminal protruding from it and a rotatory knob over it. The figure below displays a generic potentiometer:
potentiometer
The circuit diagram of potentiometer above displays three terminals namely the a,b, and c. The resistance across terminals bc can be changed by rotating the circular knob. From the voltage divider rule, the change in resistance also changes the output voltage. You can use the configuration above for using the potentiometer in your projects.
Let’s watch this video on the working of potentiometers:

Practical applications of Potentiometer

  1. Cooking Stoves
  2. Fan speed controls
  3. Lamp dimmers
  4. Electronics projects
  5. Volume controls and other audio systems (Previously they were widely employed, however, this application is reduced.)

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