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Why Do We Need Electricity?

Electricity is a form of energy and we need it for just about everything! Almost all of our modern conveniences are electrically powered.

Electricity is what lights up our classrooms, heats our homes and lets us listen to our favourite music. You are using electricity right now by using your computer to read this.

But what is electricity? To understand this, you need to know about atoms.

Everything in the universe is made up of atoms but you can't see them. Atoms are tiny particles that are too small to spot.

Atoms are made up of even smaller particles called protons, neutrons and electrons. The protons and neutrons are tightly packed together in the centre of the atom called the nucleus.

Surrounding the nucleus there are electrons orbiting around and around: in the same way that the earth goes around the sun but at a very high speed!

There is a great deal of empty space between the electrons so the atom has plenty of room inside it.

An outside force called voltage can push electrons from atom to atom. This movement of electrons produces electricity. Electricity is created by electrons that have become loose from their atoms – wow!

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