display | more...
This says that, in a closed electrical circuit, current cannot accumulate at a junction. For an equation, take a look at this diagram:
```          a ->       <- b
|
|   ^
|   c
|
|
|
```

where a, b, and c represent the magnitude of current (Amps) flowing into the junction along the three wires. Kirchoff's Current Law dictates that a + b + c = 0.
Kirchhoff's Current Law, or KCL, is a fundamental law of circuit theory. It states that the total of all currents flowing into a node (or supernode) of a circuit must equal the total of all current flowing out of the node (or supernode). In other words, the algebraic sum of all the currents entering a node must be 0.

This law is caused by twin facts: (1)charge must be conserved and (2)charge cannot accumulate at a node. Thus, since whatever charge enters a node cannot be destroyed, and it cannot accumulate, it must leave. Since current is merely charge/time, KCL follows.

Typically, one uses KCL to determine some unknown current flowing into or out of a node, having other currents known. By simultaneously solving many KCL equations, one can perform node voltage analysis.

Also very commonly misspelt Kirchoff's Current Law--about 40% of the time according to some quick searches I did on Google. (It caught me.)

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.