# This is conventional vs electron theory right?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by foolios, Dec 31, 2009.

1. ### foolios Thread Starter Active Member

Feb 4, 2009
160
1

The negative terminal is being assigned the neutral in this circuit, right?

Isn't this a dangerous way to display this? Electrons will get pushed from the bottom of the source around the circuit to the top of the source.

Because if the top side is going to actually be the hot side, wouldn't the ground be on that wire instead of the bottom(neutral)?

2. ### Paulo540 Member

Nov 23, 2009
188
0
Neutral and hot are generally AC terms, you are displaying a DC power source.

Electrons flow back and forth in AC, there isn't a + or - and neutral is never bonded to 'hot'

So, could you clarify what you are working on?

Last edited: Dec 31, 2009
3. ### Ratch New Member

Mar 20, 2007
1,068
3
foolios,

Conventional charge flow and electron flow are mathematical methodologies, not theory. Let's use our words definitively.

Ratch

4. ### VoodooMojo Active Member

Nov 28, 2009
503
53
ben franklin and the boys arbitrarily determined that electricity flowed from positive to negative.
this is considered "conventional" flow

Einstein , Fermi, Bohr, Born and many others (quantum mechanics) entered the revelation that it is the electrons that "flow" and energy is driven negative to positive
this is considered "electron" flow.

it is actually much easier to follow circuitry going from negative to positive.

there are actual two-way + and - currents that flow simultaneously in circuits that are not considered AC.
Batteries for one, arc welders for another. the list is long.

that is the topic for another discussion.

Last edited: Jan 1, 2010
5. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
20,772
2,540
There are a lot of circumstances where electrons are jumping a gap where conventional flow notation breaks down. In the case of an actual arc, ions of metal can be carried with the electrons (and I'm not referring to welding), and in the case of a vacuum tube the electrons "boil" off the cathode and are stimulated by the electric charge to move to the anode. No current can flow from the anode to the cathode.

6. ### foolios Thread Starter Active Member

Feb 4, 2009
160
1

This was under the DC section for safe circuit design. It confused me I think because I was thinking DC because of the DC source symbol as opposed to AC with the curvey line symbol.

Thanks for the replies.

7. ### Ratch New Member

Mar 20, 2007
1,068
3
VoodooMojo,

Makes no difference. Assuming that the charge carriers are positive, which many carriers like holes and ions are. And assuming that positive charges flow from positive to negative, which all positive charges do. Then it can be reasoned that opposite negative charges flow the opposite direction from negative to positive, which they do. So by applying the conventional current convention correctly, the real direction of the charge can be easily determined if necessary.

Why is that?

Why not right now with respect to conventional current? It is wrong to mathematically determine current direction depending on what the charge carriers are. That is because there are two different charge carriers that have opposite different directions for an applied voltage. Conventional current convention eliminates worrying about what the charge carriers are and assumes that mathematically, all charge is positive and flows from positive to negative. Then, if necessary, the real physical direction can be determined by the polarity of the charge carrier. It will be the same calculated direction if it is a positive carrier, and the opposite direction if a negative carrier. This eliminates the confusion and bewilderment of what the charge carriers are, and how they are directed by the voltage. The conventional current method is used by all equipment semiconductor manufacturers and advanced academic institutions. Diodes and ammeters are marked this way.

Bill_Marsden,

As I explained before, conventional current does give the proper direction of the real physical current if interpreted correctly.

Ratch

8. ### beenthere Retired Moderator

Apr 20, 2004
15,815
283
Where do you find such carriers in a wire? Give an example, please.

For the purposes of the beginners material in the Ebook, those charge carriers are electrons.

I very much question your statement. In any case, it is not consistent with the Ebook material.

9. ### Paulo540 Member

Nov 23, 2009
188
0

My course is using electron flow as well. But my EE friend/former co-worker who got his BS from CalPoly, was trained conventional flow. So he has a hard time helping me sometimes, lol.

However, diodes and transistors are marked using 'conventional' flow. no?

10. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
20,772
2,540
Yep, when they labeled all these parts conventional was king. Even then they knew better.

But the numbers of cases where conventional flow simply can't explain what is happening is too large to ignore. I learned electron flow in elementary school, and didn't really see conventional flow till much later. If you know how an atom is constructed it is extremely obvious how electricity works, they are very linked. Last I checked there is no case where electrons are considered positive. It didn't even occur to me the symbols had something wrong with them until I hit this site, I always figured the arrows pointed to the source of electrons.

The house wiring classes I had while I was in high school and college taught conventional flow though.

In my electronics classes we used electron flow, both in high school and college. Any sweeping statement to the contrary is flat wrong. There really is only one correct definition of flow, the other is an analogy created in the 18th century (3¼ centuries ago) because the facts weren't all in. The facts are now in, so it is time to teach 20th century science.

Sorry guy, but you're wrong on this one, unless you use a different model for the atom than the rest of us. Repeating the same wrong theory over and over will not make it so. It fails to explain tubes (valves), and it fails to explain how an arc can carry material from negative to positive, which is a common industrial process in several forms.

I'm not going to argue with you though, since you love to argue for its own sake and I dislike repeating the obvious.

Last edited: Jan 1, 2010