Electricity Facts

Electricity is a force caused by electric charge. It is a form of energy which we use to power machines and electrical devices. When the charges are not moving, electricity is called static electricity. When the charges are moving they are an electric current, sometimes called dynamic electricity. Lightning is the most obvious kind of electricity in nature but sometimes static electricity causes things to stick together. See the fact file below for more information about electricity.
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  • Electricity is the flow of electrical power or charge.
  • Electricity travels at the speed of light more than 186,000 miles per second.
  • The electricity we use in our homes comes from a primary source like oil, nuclear power, coal, natural gas, the sun, or other natural sources.
  • Water and wind are other sources of energy, called mechanical energy.
  • We use electricity every day for heat, light and power.
  • Before we began generating electricity, over 100 years ago, fireplaces and pot-belly stoves kept homes warm, kerosene lamps and candles lit homes and food was kept cool in iceboxes or underground storage cellars.
  • Benjamin Franklin was the first person to help people understand the principles of electricity and Thomas Edison changed the world with his invention of the electric light bulb.
  • A spark of static electricity can measure up to three thousand (3,000) volts. A bolt of lightning can measure up to three million (3,000,000) volts and it lasts less than one second!
  • According to the United States Energy Information Administration, electricity consumption will increase by 51 percent from 2002 to 2025.
  • The first power plant owned by Thomas Edison opened in New York City in 1882.