Eli5- What are some applications for a series-parallel combination circuit?


Having some trouble finding examples for specific combination circuits. If someone could give me an example of some daily applications for this and why a combination circuit is used instead of only series or parallel I would greatly appreciate it.

In: Engineering

It’s used within electronics. The most common or easiest place to find them is LED lamps.

A lamp with a series-parallel circuit will keep working if some of the LEDs fail.

See BigCliveDotCom on YouTube, he has a lot of videos showing series-parallel circuits.

A color changing LED light. You have a current limiting resistor in series with several colors of LED lights in parallel. You may then have switches selecting the color and the current limiting resistor regulates the overall brightness of the light. Even your house wireing is a combination of series and parallel circuits. You have a main circuit breaker and a meter which are connected in series with the breaker panel which again is a bunch of parallel circuits each with its own circuit breaker in series. Each circuit have the devices hooked in parallel but then there may be further switches in series with some of these devices and so on. And the devices themselves are even more advanced, just imagine how you would connect a multiple stage hot water heater with thermostats and different heating elements. At some temperatures you might want to connect the heating elements in series and at some temperatures you might wire them in parallel.

Another common application is wiring together batteries. The voltage of a battery is fairly low but adds when you wire them in series, so if you need 4.5V you might wire 3 1.5V cells together in series. If you then want to double your overall energy capacity you would then wire an identical, 3 cell in series, arrangement in parallel with the first. This sort of thing is common, especially in electric vehicle batteries which want both lots of capacity and a higher voltage coming out of the battery pack than the 3.7V you get from wiring 8 billion Li-ions just in parallel with each other.