Electricity is a naturally occurring energy, and a physician named William Gilbert was the first to study it. Gilbert called electricity "electrica" in his famous writings on electricity and magnetism. Benjamin Franklin is often credited for discovering electricity due to his experiments on the relation between electricity and lightning.
William Gilbert's findings on electricity influenced other scientists, including the French scientist Charles Francois Du Fay, the English scientist Stephen Gray and the German scientist Otto von Guericke. In 1660, Otto van Guericke invented the first electric generator, which created static electricity. Stephen Gray then discovered the principle of the conduction of electricity in 1729. Charles Francois du Fay discovered that electricity came in positive or negative charges in 1733. Before William Gilbert's research, electricity was only a curiosity. For example, people would rub amber on a cat's fur, and notice that a mysterious force attracted feathers.
Benjamin Franklin discovered that electricity and lightning are the same thing. His lightning rod was the first practical application of electricity, and was a crucial step towards modern electricity. Over the years, many other scientists and inventors performed experiments and worked to turn electricity into a usable energy, including Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, Heinrich Hertz and Nikola Tesla. Albert Einstein discovered the law of the photoelectric effect, which was used to make commercial electricity possible. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for this in 1921.Learn More
Electricity is important because it is versatile, controlled easily and is used in everyone's daily life. Without electricity, humans would have to use other forms of energy that are less efficient.Full Answer >
Electricity is the flow of electrons through a conductor. Electricity is based on the principle that all matter has negatively and positively charged particles within its atoms.Full Answer >
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, electricity is dangerous because it can cause burns, nerve damage, cardiac arrest and death. Alliant Engery also notes that the majority of the human body is composed of water, which makes it a good conductor of electricity.Full Answer >
The abbreviation "mA" denotes the International System unit for electrical current known as the milliampere. One milliampere is equal to one-thousandth of an ampere. The unit is named for the 18th and 19th century French physicist Andre-Marie Ampere, who studied electromagnetism.Full Answer >