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Glossary / Dictionary of Electronics Terms - W

watt - Unit of electrical power required to do work at the rate of one joule per second. One watt of power is expended when one ampere of direct current flows through a resistance of one ohm. In an AC circuit, true power is the product of effective volts and effective amperes, multiplied by the power factor.

wattage rating - Maximum power a device can safely handle continuously.

watt-hour - Unit of electrical work, equal to a power of one watt being absorbed for one hour.

wattmeter - Instrument used to measure electric power in watts.

wave - Electric, electromagnetic, acoustic, mechanical or other form whose physical activity rises and falls or advances and retreats periodically as it travels through some medium.

waveform - Shape of a wave.

waveguide - Rectangular or circular pipe used to guide electromagnetic waves at micro frequencies.

wavelength - (l) Distance between two points of corresponding phase and is equal to waveform velocity divided by frequency.

weber - (Wb) Unit of magnetic flux. One weber is the amount of flux that when linked with a single turn of wire for an interval of one second will induce an electromotive force of one volt.

wien-bridge oscillator - Oscillator that uses an RC low-pass filter and an RC high-pass filter to set the frequency of oscillations.

wet cell - Secondary cell using a liquid as an electrolyte.

wetting - Term used in soldering to describe the condition that occurs when the metals being soldered are hot enough to melt the solder so it flows over the surface.

wheatstone bridge - Four arm bridge circuit used to measure resistance, inductance or capacitance.

wideband amplifier - Also called "broadband amplifier." Amplifier with a flat response over a wide range of frequencies.

winding - One or more turns of a conductor wound in the form of a coil.

wire - Single solid or stranded group of conductors having a low resistance to current flow. Used to make connections between circuits or points in a circuit.

wire gauge - American wire gauge (AWG) is a system of numerical designations of wire diameters.

wireless - Term describing radio communication that requires no wired between two communicating points.

wire wound resistor - Resistor in which the resistive element is a length of high resistance wire or ribbon usually nichrome wound onto an insulating form.

wire wrapping - Method of making a connection by wrapping wire around a rectangular pin.

woofer - Large loudspeaker designed primarily to reproduce low frequency audio signals.

work - Work is done any time energy is transformed from one type to another. The amount of work done is dependent on the amount of energy transformed.

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