Circuit Analysis With Solar Energy: Measure the Power Consumed by Various Devices

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Emily Barrett
Intended Grade Level(s):
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour 30 min
Learning Goal(s):

Students will understand that voltage is a measure of a difference in electric potential energy and that current is the rate at which charge flows through a circuit.

Students will understand how to measure and quantify electricity.

Students will become familiar with the relationships between the fundamental electrical


Students will set up a simple circuit using a solar module and three small loads. They will then use a multimeter to measure the voltage across each load and the current through each circuit. Students will then calculate the power consumption and resistance of each load.


Science Kit Material(s) Used

1.5-Volt 500mA Solar Module
2-Volt, 500mA Solar Modules
3-Volt, 1A Solar Module

Other Material(s) Used

One 250-500W halogen shop light • One sound board* • One LED light* • One mini battery-powered radio* • Two alligator test leads • Lab handout • “How to Use a Multimeter Cheat Sheet” student handout * Other low power, DC (battery-operated) devices