25 Facts about Electricity

Can you imagine a world without electricity? In that case, we would still be in the Dark Age. The significance of electricity in our lives is beyond explanation. In this post, we will be sharing 25 electrifying facts about electricity.

So, are you curious about electricity? Do you want to know more about this mysterious form of energy? Then this is the post for you. By the time you have read this article, we can assure you that you will learn a lot of new things about electricity.

So, let’s jump right in…

Amazing Facts about Electricity:

#1 Water and Electricity:

You might have known that water is a good conductor of electricity. But this is partially true. Now, if it is pure water i.e. H2O, then electricity will not pass through. However, if the water has impurities, then the electricity will pass through.

This is because electricity needs free electrons to transmit. But when we are talking about pure water or H2O, there are no free electrons. Thus no electricity conduction as well.

#2 Lightning Bolt:

The lightning is actually a form of electricity. A single bolt of lightning can have up to 3 million volts. While lightning bolts have a speed of about up to 2, 00,000 kilometers per hour. And, the temperature of a lighting stroke can reach up to about 30 thousand degrees Celsius.

#3 Renewable Electricity:

Iceland is known for its geography and natural beauties all around the world. However, it is also known for being one of the leaders in renewable energy.

Matter of fact, Iceland is the only country in the world that uses 100% renewable electricity sources. Among them, they get about 26.8% of the electricity from geothermal energy. And the rest of the about 73-74% comes from hydropower plants.

#4 Electric Eel:

Electric eels don’t need any special introductions. From ancient times, people on Earth know them for their ability to generate electricity. Even though we call them eels, they are actually not related to eels. Rather these are one kind of knife fish. They are more related to catfishes than eels.

Now, these electric eels can produce about up to 500-600 volts of electricity. They have over 6000 special cells (electrocytes) on their body those act like tiny batteries. And, due to that, they can use the electricity to stun or shock the prey or the predator.

#5 World’s First Power Plant

Thomas Alva Edison was the first person who built an electric power plant in the world. It was September 4, 1882, at 3 PM (local time), he opened it officially. This was a coal-powered power station. The name of that power plant was Edison Electric Light Station.

#6 Google Search

Whenever you need to look for something on the internet, you will head to Google.com. Google is the world’s number 1 search engine without any doubt. And, we have a cool fact about Google search query related to electricity. According to Google, it needs about 0.0003 kWh of energy (electric) for each search query.

In that sense, with this amount of electric energy, you will be able to light a 60-watt bulb for about 18 seconds. And, on average, Google spends about 250-280 million watts of energy every single day for looking up our search queries.

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#7 Coal and Electricity

Electricity can be produced from a lot of sources. However, at the moment, coal is the number 1 source for producing electricity all over the world. Lots of big countries like the USA, China, Australia, South Africa, etc. use coal to generate most of their electricity needs.

#8 Birds vs. Electricity

You might have noticed that birds are sitting on the power line at times. But they are not getting electrocuted or shocked. Do you know why? Because birds are not a good conductor of electricity. The electricity that passes through the power line actually ignores the birds and chooses to flow through the copper wire instead.

And, there is another reason as well. Typically, you will see that the birds are sitting on a single wire. That way, there is no voltage difference in a single wire. To flow electricity from one thing to another, there must be a voltage difference. So if anyhow, a bird accidentally touches another wire with a voltage difference, it will get electrocuted in an instant.

#9 Discovery of Electricity:

Human beings have actually known about electricity for thousands of years. However, they could not use it as we do today.

And, there is a great debate on this about who discovered electricity at first. Some say the Arabs, while others say the Greeks actually found out about electricity at first. On the other hand, some say the Romans actually figured out electricity first.

However, it is known that the ancient Greeks knew about electricity. They used ambers to generate static electricity by rubbing fur on it. Now, it was William Gilbert who used the word ‘Electricus’ for the first time. Electricus means ‘of amber’.

#10 Electricity in Ethiopia:

In Ethiopia, electricity was introduced back in 1896. There is a story behind this, though. Their Emperor Menelik II brought 2 electric chairs for using them as a means of capital punishment. But after bringing them, he saw that those were useless without electricity.

#11 Electrocute Means:

Electrocute is a compilation of 2 words that are electro and execute. That means that something was killed or executed by electricity. So, if someone gets shocked by electricity but haven’t died, then it will not be called ‘electrocuted’. However, death due to electric shock means electrocute.

#12 The Word Electricity

As we mentioned previously, William Gilbert was the first person to coin the word ‘Electricus’. He introduced this word back in 1600 in his textbook named ‘De Magnete’. He conducted lots of experiments regarding electricity and magnetism.

Later, another English scientist named Thomas Browne used the word ‘Electricity’ for the first time in history. And, he was actually an admirer of William Gilbert. He used to study the materials left by William Gilbert.

#13 Electricity in the USA

The USA gets its electricity from a wide variety of sources. Among them, the 3 most common sources are coal, natural gas, and nuclear power. Added to that, the USA also uses solar and wind power to generate electricity.

On average, the USA has generated about 4.18 trillion kWh of electricity back in 2018. Among them, about 63% of the electricity was produced from fossil fuels like petroleum, coal, and natural gas, etc.

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#14 Speed of Electricity

You might have heard that Electricity is as fast as the speed of light. This is actually not fully true. If you define electricity as an electromagnetic wave and if it passes through the vacuum, then electricity will have the same speed as light.

On the other hand, if you are talking about the electricity we use on a regular basis, it is almost 1/100th of the speed of light in vacuum.

#15 Platypuses and Electricity

Platypuses are known for many things. Among them, one is for having electric sensors. Matter of fact, their bills are covered with about 40 thousand of electricity sensors.

With the help of these numerous sensors, they can sense the electric fields that are generated by their prey. That way, they feel the presence of others and accumulate their own foods.

#16 Benjamin Harrison vs. Electricity

The 23rd president of the United States of America was Benjamin Harrison. He served as the president from 1889 to 1893. In those periods, electricity was introduced in the White House. But President Benjamin Harrison and his family were very afraid of electricity. Thus, they did not touch any of the electric switches in the White House.

#17 Jean-Antoine Nollet vs. Electricity

Jean-Antoine Nollet (also known as abbé Nollet) was a French physicist and clergyman in the 1700s. He discovered osmosis.  Besides, he performed a lot of experiments regarding electricity. One of them was pretty interesting. It was 1746 when he gathered about 200 monks and made them seat into a circle with a circumference of about 1.6 km.

And, they were connected to each other by iron wire. Then he discharged a battery through the iron wire and observed that all of the monks reacted to the shock at the same time. That means the speed of electricity is too fast. It was a very significant experiment in knowing the speed of electricity.

#18 Benjamin Franklin vs. Electricity

Benjamin Franklin was one of the most prolific personas in the history of the USA. He was one of the founding fathers of the USA. Added to that, he was also a great inventor, writer, political leader, scientist, and so on.

However, he is also famous for inventing the lightning rod, bifocals, Franklin stoves, and more. He used to perform a lot of experiments with electricity. He is the first person to prove that lightning in the sky is actually a form of electricity found in nature.

He flew a kite in a thunderstorm with a conductive and pointed wire attached to the kite. Eventually, the thunderstorm actually hit the kite and proving that it is indeed a form of electricity.

#19 Romans vs. Electricity

Back in the 1930s, archaeologists found some pots wrapped with copper sheets in some ancient Roman sites. After a lot of research, they reported that these pots might be some kind of battery. Also, that time, static electricity was already discovered and they knew about magnetism as well.

#20 Electricity in Other Planets:

You would always find electricity in outer space if the conditions are right. However, it is very hard to find lightning in the atmosphere of other planets. Till now, we have found out that lightning bolts appear in the atmosphere of Jupiter and Saturn.

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However, it is a debatable fact whether there is any lightning on Venus. From some experiments back in 1970 to 1980, it was theorized that lightning might be present in the upper atmosphere of Venus. However, there were no signs of lightning when the Cassini–Huygens probe flew by Venus in 1999.

#21 Electricity Costs around the World

We all know that we have to pay our electric bills per month to be able to use electricity in our households. Now, the Solomon Islands is a place where the price of electricity is the highest. For your information, you have to pay up to 1 USD per kWh. This is because the country is located in the Pacific Ocean.

On the opposite, Myanmar, Iraq, Iran, and Qatar, etc. has the cheapest electricity prices in the world. They have to pay from 2 to 3 US cents per kilowatt-hour. The average electricity prices in the world are about 15 US cents.

#22 Electricity 200 Years Ago

Nowadays, we use electricity on a daily basis. This is an inseparable part of our modern civilization. However, 200 years ago, electricity was not used like this. Rather, scientists and magicians would take advantage of electricity for performing experiments and magic tricks in those days.

#23 Sources of Electric Energy:

Electricity needs to be generated from different energy sources. Because it is not readily found in nature. There are multiple sources from where we can generate electricity. The most commonly used are coal, oil, natural gas, nuclear reactor, solar, hydro, wind, biofuels, etc.

#24 Nuclear Reactor vs. Electricity

At the moment, about 15% of the world’s electricity is generated by nuclear power. There are 30 countries and about 400 nuclear reactors in the world. The United Kingdom was the first country to produce and provide electricity from nuclear power commercially to the public.

It was the Calder Hall Nuclear reactor from which the UK provided electricity to the mass back in 1956. However, it is also to be noted that there are some significant issues with nuclear reactors. Among them, the safety and the disposable of nuclear waste are the main ones.

#25 Nikola Tesla and Electricity

Today, we mostly use AC or alternating current on our households, offices, and everywhere we can. However, this was always not the case. For the record, direct current or DC usually comes from the battery. And, the electricity we get from the power plant via the power line to our home is the AC or alternating current.

The AC current is efficient, better, and can be transferred over a long distance without any issues. Thanks to Nikola Tesla and his invention. It was his idea and discoveries to use AC current to bring electricity to household areas.

Sum up—Facts about Electricity:

We are almost at the end of the article. Above, we have shared some of the most interesting facts about electricity for you. Electricity is a part and parcel of our life and it shaped the modern world without a doubt. You know that it would not even be possible for you to read this post without electricity.

So, we should not take it for granted. As well as, you should also be careful while working with electricity. We hope this post and the facts about electricity will make electricity more interesting to you.

If you have enjoyed the post, you can share this with your friends and family. And, you can also share your opinions or suggestions in the comment section down below!

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About the Author: Jakaria Tiaz

Jakaria brings years of extensive experience in tech and business writing to the team. After working as the chief editor for several very large online magazines Jakaria agreed to take part in Tech 25 and help turn it into the leading Tech news and facts site online.