
Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
The purpose of this exercise is for students to use simultaneous equations to arrive at values for fixed resistors R_{1} and R_{2} that will limit output voltage adjustment to the limits specified.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for V_{thevenin}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{thevenin}.
In case it is not already crystalclear, I want students to build two different circuits for this exercise: the “original” circuit and also a “Thevenin equivalent” circuit, then plug the exact same load resistor into both circuits (one at a time) to see that the voltage across it is the same in both cases. Many students seem to struggle with the basic concept of equivalent circuits, and I have found this exercise (once successfully completed) to be excellent for “making it real” to these students.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for V_{thevenin}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{thevenin}.
In case it is not already crystalclear, I want students to build two different circuits for this exercise: the “original” circuit and also a “Thevenin equivalent” circuit, then plug the exact same load resistor into both circuits (one at a time) to see that the voltage across it is the same in both cases. Many students seem to struggle with the basic concept of equivalent circuits, and I have found this exercise (once successfully completed) to be excellent for “making it real” to these students.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for V_{thevenin}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{thevenin}.
In case it is not already crystalclear, I want students to build two different circuits for this exercise: the “original” circuit and also a “Thevenin equivalent” circuit, then plug the exact same load resistor into both circuits (one at a time) to see that the voltage across it is the same in both cases. Many students seem to struggle with the basic concept of equivalent circuits, and I have found this exercise (once successfully completed) to be excellent for “making it real” to these students.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for V_{thevenin}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{thevenin}.
In case it is not already crystalclear, I want students to build two different circuits for this exercise: the “original” circuit and also a “Thevenin equivalent” circuit, then plug the exact same load resistor into both circuits (one at a time) to see that the voltage across it is the same in both cases. Many students seem to struggle with the basic concept of equivalent circuits, and I have found this exercise (once successfully completed) to be excellent for “making it real” to these students.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for V_{thevenin}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{thevenin}.
In case it is not already crystalclear, I want students to build two different circuits for this exercise: the “original” circuit and also a “Thevenin equivalent” circuit, then plug the exact same load resistor into both circuits (one at a time) to see that the voltage across it is the same in both cases. Many students seem to struggle with the basic concept of equivalent circuits, and I have found this exercise (once successfully completed) to be excellent for “making it real” to these students.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.

Use circuit simulation software to verify your predicted and measured parameter values.
Use a variablevoltage, regulated power supply for I_{norton}, and a fixedvoltage supply for V_{source}. Specify standard resistor values, all between 1 kΩ and 100 kΩ (1k5, 2k2, 2k7, 3k3, 4k7, 5k1, 6k8, 10k, 22k, 33k, 39k 47k, 68k, etc.) for resistors in the original circuit. A decade box or potentiometer will suffice for R_{norton}.
An extension of this exercise is to incorporate troubleshooting questions. Whether using this exercise as a performance assessment or simply as a conceptbuilding lab, you might want to follow up your students’ results by asking them to predict the consequences of certain circuit faults.
Published under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution License
by Gary Elinoff
by Gary Elinoff
by Gary Elinoff