Why are birds not electrocuted?

Discussion in 'Electronics Resources' started by Ala888, Jun 27, 2014.

  1. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
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    Hello, the question really bothers me.
    essentially, electrocution is an unwanted flow of current through the body
    if this is the case, what is difference between a bird on a wire and me touching
    the wire. I illustrate my confusion with this diagram
    as seen in the form of a circuit, isnt the body of the bird and mine the same?
    ssssssssss.png
    how come current goes through me, but not bird?
     
  2. anhnha

    Active Member

    Apr 19, 2012
    773
    45
    The voltage across the bird is almost zero while it is power supply voltage across you.
     
  3. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
    0
    so technically, the bird is also getting electrocuted, its just that very little current is passing through it. k

    if we remove the middle "house" resistor, would both the bird and I be safe then?
     
  4. MrCarlos

    Active Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    400
    134
    Hi Ala888

    You say:
    As seen in the form of a circuit, is not it the body of the bird and mine the same?

    No, not exactly.
    Look closely the bird, only touches a wire while You touch one to close the circuit where you stand.
     
  5. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
    0
    ssssssssss.png
    this is how i see things
    isnt the bird and me the same thing?
    how do we differ?
    we're just standing in different locations, but i dont see any obvious distinctions between the two
     
  6. MrCarlos

    Active Member

    Jan 2, 2010
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  7. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
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    sdsdasdasd.png
    woops, its meant to say *like it did the bird

    Am I right now? do i finally understand?
     
  8. inwo

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2013
    2,433
    315
    More like this.
    Bird has only one contact point.
    Insulated feet you're safe.
     
  9. inwo

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2013
    2,433
    315
    Yes and no.

    Impossible circuit. Short circuit is not allowed.

    If it was there would be zero voltage anywhere on circuit. And safe.

    In practice the circuit would shut down explosively.:eek:
     
  10. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
    0
    giant noob again, why do I need to insulate the feet?
    I've already read where 'Oh because it indirectly connects you to circuit'
    but how?
    wouldnt the pathway between my feet and ground back to wire be a massive resistor to such an extent that electrons would have no preference to go through me (a trafficjammed tunnel), as opposed to
    the massive freeway that is the wire?
    ==============================================

    "Yes and no.

    Impossible circuit. Short circuit is not allowed.
    "
    but if it did exist, i would be safe. correct?
     
  11. inwo

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 7, 2013
    2,433
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    To many scenarios.
     
  12. MrCarlos

    Active Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    400
    134
    oh boy

    analyzes the image attached, please
     
    Ala888 likes this.
  13. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
    12,421
    3,356
    This lineman is riding a HV line that carries 500,000 volts and the lineman is not electrocuted, the same situation as a bird on the wire.

    [​IMG]

    The reason it is not safe for you to touch a HV wire is because your feet on the ground creates a circuit through your body.
     
    Ala888 likes this.
  14. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
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    asdsadasdsa.png
    am i right now?
     
  15. MaxHeadRoom

    Expert

    Jul 18, 2013
    10,509
    2,369
    This deer was not so lucky! :eek:
    Max.
     
  16. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
    12,421
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    Not quite right.

    Touch only one spot on the wire. With two hands and two legs touching the wire, you can only touch the same spot at the same time.
     
  17. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
    0
    what? no comprendo. what do you mean by that?
     
  18. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
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    In your diagram, you have drawn three limbs touching different locations or wires. That will result in electrocution.

    If both hands grab the same spot on the wire, you're safe, presuming you are hanging in mid-air on the HV line. The problem is how you get there in the first place.

    A helicopter has to take you there:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tzga6qAaBA
     
  19. Ala888

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 26, 2014
    15
    0
    why would it electrocute me ?
    my limbs, no matter where Im touching, presents an incredibly large resistance as compared
    to the little to no resistance wire. Why would electrons want to flow through me instead?
     
  20. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
    12,421
    3,356
    Doesn't matter how high your body resistance. High voltage will find a path through your body and kill you.

    Here is an example.

    As a teenager, I was working on a tube amplifier with a 400VDC power supply.
    The amp was on a wooden desk and I was sitting on a wooden chair on a wood floor. Wood is a good insulator, right?
    The power was turn off. I reached in with my hand and touched the circuit. Next thing I knew I was thrown across the room off my chair. Luckily, I'm here to tell the tale.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2014
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