CHAPTER 4  CIRCUIT THEOREMS
List of topics for this chapter :
Linearity Property Principle of Superposition Source Transformations Thevenin's Theorem Norton's Theorem Maximum Power Transfer Verifying Circuit Theorems with PSpice
LINEARITY PROPERTY
Linearity is the condition in which the change in value of one quantity is directly proportional to that of another quantity. A linear circuit is one whose output is linearly related (or directly proportional) to its input.
Problem 4.1
currents and voltages of the circuit increase by the same value, then a circuit is linear. Show that
If all the independent sources are multiplied by a value, K, and all the
K2 A
Figure 4.1
K2 A
At node 1 :
At node 2 :
Problem 4.2
(a)
(b)
(c)
[4.3]
In the circuit in Figure 4.1, calculate
Find
v
o
and
i
o
when v
s =
10 V
.
v
o
and
i
o
when v
s =
1 V .
Figure 4.1
First, transform the Y (or T) subcircuit to its ∆ (or Π) equivalent.
v s
(a)
i o
R
and
(b)
R  3R =
3R
2
3
=
4R
4
R
v
o
2
= independent of R
v
s
,
i
o
=
v
(a) 
When 
(b) 
When 
(c) 
When 
v
v
_{s}
v
o
=
o
1 V and R = 1 Ω,
= 0.5 V
i
o
10 V and R = 1 Ω,
=
5 V
i
o
10 V
and R = 10 Ω ,
=
5 V
i
o
3
3
3
R +
R
=
4
4
2
= 0.5 A
=
5 A
= 0.5 A
R
PRINCIPLE OF SUPERPOSITION
The superposition principle states that the voltage across (or current through) an element in a linear circuit is the algebraic sum of the voltages across (or currents through) that element due to each independent source acting alone.
Figure 4.1

Carefully DEFINE the problem. Each component is labeled completely. The problem is clear. 


PRESENT everything you know about the problem. Using the principle of superposition, we will need to find the desired current when the current source is turned off, or set equal to zero. This implies the replacement of the current source with an open circuit. Let this value be equal to I _{x} ′. We will also need to find the desired current when the voltage source is turned off. This implies the replacement of the voltage source with a short circuit. Let this value be equal to I _{x} ″. Then, the desired current is the sum of these two currents, i.e., 

I _{x} 
= 
I _{x} ′ + I _{x} ″ 


Establish a set of ALTERNATIVE solutions and determine the one that promises the greatest likelihood of success. This circuit, having two independent sources, can be analyzed using nodal or mesh analysis, as seen in Chapter 3. The problem statement requires the use of superposition. The principle of superposition can be very useful, especially when there are several independent sources. More work may be required to find the desired voltage or current, but the analysis is performed using simpler circuits. 
ATTEMPT a problem solution. Setting the current source to zero, the circuit becomes
The system of simultaneous equations is
Clearly,
and
v
v
1
2
'
V
x
=
I
_{x} ' =
v
V
1
x
−
'
v
2
5
=
5 5
=
=
=
2 1 v 1 2 v 
1 15 2 = 0 


1 
2 
1 15 
1 
30 

4 − 1 
1 
2 

0 = 3 15 

10 
− 5 
= 
5 
volts. 
1
amp.
=
10
5
Setting the voltage source to zero, the circuit becomes
–6 A
Use nodal analysis to find At node 1 :
v 
1 

v 
1 
− 
0 
+ 
v 
1 
− 0 
+ 
v 
1 
− 
v 
^{2} 

10 
10 
5 

v 
1 + 
v 
1 + 
(2)(v 1 
− 
v 
2 
) 
= 
0 

4v 
1 
− 
2v 
2 
= 
0 

2v 
1 
− 
v 
2 
= 
0 
and
v
= 0
Simplifying,
2
.
At node 2 :
v
2
−
v
1
v
2
− 0
+
5
5
=
v
 v
2
−
v
1
+
1
+
2 v
2
v
2
=
= 30
30
The system of simultaneous equations is
1
2
1 v
v
2
1
2
=
0
 30
v
v
1
2
=
1
2
2  30
1
0
1
4
−
1 1
=
3
 30
 60
=
10
 20
6
_{C}_{l}_{e}_{a}_{r}_{l}_{y}_{,}
and
V "
x
=
v
1
−
v
2
=
I
_{x}
"
=
V "
x
10
=
5 5
10
−
(20)
= 2
amps.
=
10
volts.
The sum of the currents, I '
current,
and I " , due to the two independent sources acting alone is the
x
x
I
x , of the circuit due to both sources.
I
I
_{x} =
x
1
=
+
I
2
x
'
=
+
I
3
x
"
amps.
EVALUATE the solution and check for accuracy.
–6 A
Simplifying,
v
4 v
2 v
−
1
1
1
30
−
−
+
2 v
v
2
v
2
=
1
+
(2)(v
=
30
15
1
−
v
2
)
=
0
v
 v
2
−
v
1
+
1
+
2 v
2
The system of simultaneous equations is
_{C}_{l}_{e}_{a}_{r}_{l}_{y}_{,}
and

2 1 v 
1 



1 2 

v 
2 

= 


v v 
1 

1 
2 
1 
15 
1 

= 
4 
− 
1 1 
2  30 = 


2 

V 
x 
= v 
1 
− v 
2 
= 
0 
− 
(15) 
= 
15 
volts. 

V 
x 
15 

I _{x} = 5 
= 
5 
= 3 
amps. 
15
 30
30
3 15
−
−
30
60
v
2
=
=
30
30
=
0
15
This answer is the same as the answer obtained using the principle of superposition. Our check for accuracy was successful.
Has the problem been solved SATISFACTORILY? If so, present the solution; if not, then return to “ALTERNATIVE solutions” and continue through the process again. This problem has been solved satisfactorily.
I
x
= 3 A
Problem 4.4 
[4.11] 
Apply the superposition principle to find 
v 
Figure 4.1. 
6 ΩΩΩΩ
o in the circuit of
Figure 4.1
Let
respectively. For
v
o
= v
o1
+ v
o2
+ v
o3
, where
v
o1
,
v
o2
, and
v
v o1
, consider the circuit below.
o3
6 ΩΩΩΩ
are due to the 20V, 1A, and 2A sources,
_{6} _{}_{} _{(}_{4} _{+} _{2}_{)} _{=} _{3} _{Ω}
For
v o2
, consider the circuit below.
6
ΩΩΩΩ
3  6 = 2 Ω
For
v o3
, consider the circuit below.
3 ΩΩΩΩ
3 ΩΩΩΩ
^{v} o2
v
o1
=
(1 2)(20)
=
6
ΩΩΩΩ
10 V
2 A
3 ΩΩΩΩ
v o3
_{6} _{}_{} _{(}_{4} _{+} _{2}_{)} _{=} _{3} _{Ω}
v
o3
=
(1)(3)
=
3
Thus, 

v 
o 
_{=} 10 _{+} 1− 3 _{=} 8 V 

Problem 4.5 
A linear circuit has the following independent sources: 
V 1 
, 
V 
2 
, and 
I 
S 
along with a current,
elements (resistors and dependent sources) in the circuit. Complete the following table.
I
R
, through a resistor. It cannot be assumed that these are the only
Circuit number 
V _{1} (volts) 
V _{2} (volts) 
I _{S} (amps) 
I _{R} (amps) 
Condition #1 
10 
0 
0 
2 
Condition #2 
0 
5 
0 
–1 
Condition #3 
0031 

Condition #4 
10 
5 
3 

Condition #5 
10 
–20 
3 

Condition #6 
6 
This problem is based on linearity and the principle of superposition.
From the Conditions #1, #2, and #3, we know
_{}
_{}
_{}
I
I
I
Condition #4 :
Condition #5 :
R =
R =
R =
I
I
R
R
2
1
1
amps when the only contributing independent source is V
amp when the only contributing independent source is V
1 =
=
3
2
S =
amp when the only contributing independent source is I
=
=
10
5
5 (1) + 3 (1)
3
10 (2) +
=
10 
(2) +  20 
(1) + 

10 

5 
3 (1)
3
2
−
1
=
2
+
+
1
4
= 2 A
+
1
= 7 A
10
5
volts.
volts.
amps.
Condition #6 : The following are only three of an infinite set of solutions.
If only one source is not equal to zero
then
or
or
V _{1} =
V
1
=
?
_{0}
0
V
2 =
V
_{2} =
=
V 1 V
=
2
0
?
_{0}
I
S
= _{0}
I
S
=
I
S =
_{0}
?
I
I
I
R =
R =
R =
6
6
6
6
6
6
V
1
10
V
2
=
(2)
(1)
=
=
5
S
I
(1)
3
V 1 =
V
2
=
I
S =
30
 30
18
SOURCE TRANSFORMATIONS
A source transformation is the process of replacing a voltage source
with a current source
I
S in parallel with a resistor R or vice versa.
V
S
in series with a resistor R
Problem 4.6
equivalent, where
Given that the following circuits are linear, prove that the two circuits are
V
V
Two circuits are said to be equivalent if they have the same voltagecurrent relationship at their
V
Using KVL, 

or 

Now, find 
V 
x 
and 
Using KCL, 

or 

We know that 
R 
S
Using mesh analysis,
We know that
R S
In both circuits,
V
=
x
V
S
I S
_{=} V
S
.
So,
_{−} R
S
I
x
R I 
x + V + R S 
(I 
x 
− 
I 
S 
) 

(R S + 
R)I x = 
R S 
I 
S 
− 
V 

I 
x = R S R I S 
S − V + R 

V 
− V 

I x = S 
. 

and 
R S + V I V S − x = R . 

R S + 
R 
Therefore, the two circuits are equivalent.
V
Problem 4.7
i
o
.
12 V
Figure 4.1
Transforming only the current sources leads to Fig. (a). Continuing with source transformations finally produces the circuit in Fig. (d).
12 V
(a)
(b)
(c)
(d)
Applying KVL to the loop in Fig. (d),
Figure 4.1
I
o
= 2 A
THEVENIN'S THEOREM
Thevenin's theorem states that a linear twoterminal circuit can be replaced by an equivalent
circuit consisting of a voltage source
circuit voltage at the terminals and
when the independent sources are zero. An alternative way to find
circuit current between the terminals,
is to find the short
is the input or equivalent resistance at the terminals
V
Th
R Th
I sc
in series with a resistor
R
Th
R Th
, where
V
Th
is the open
; then,
V
Th
R
L
V
Th
R
Th
= V
oc
=
V
oc
I
sc
Note that finding the equivalent resistance between the terminals using this approach is a valid
method only if there are no dependent sources. Calculating method with independent and dependent sources.
R
Th
using
V
oc
and
I
sc
is a valid
Finally, if V
source at the terminals, as shown below, to find
=
I
sc
=
0
, then the circuit must be excited with a voltage source or a current
R Th
.
oc
Find
Now,
I
o if given a voltage source
1/I _{o} or
V
o
= 1 V.
R
Th
=
R _{T}_{h} = V _{o} /1.
Find
V
o
if given a current source
I
o
= 1 A.
Problem 4.9
the current
Solve for the Thevenin equivalent circuit as seen by the 10Ω resistor with
I
o flowing through it in Figure 4.1.
Carefully DEFINE the problem. Each component is labeled completely. The problem is clear.
PRESENT everything you know about the problem. To find the Thevenin equivalent circuit, we need to find the opencircuit voltage (
the terminals of the 10Ω resistor with the current
find the shortcircuit current (
V oc
) across
I
o flowing through it. We also need to
I sc
) through these terminals. Then,
V Th
= V
oc
and
R Th
_{=} V
oc
I
sc
Because the circuit has no dependent sources, there is an alternative way to find the Thevenin
is the input resistance at the terminals when the independent sources are set
equal to zero. This method will not be used in the initial attempt to find a solution. It is better to find the shortcircuit current and calculate the Thevenin resistance because it will work for any circuit. However, we can find the input resistance at the terminals to check our initial solution.
resistance.
R Th
Establish a set of ALTERNATIVE solutions and determine the one that promises the greatest likelihood of success. To find the opencircuit voltage, the obvious techniques are nodal analysis, mesh analysis, or source transformations along with KVL. Because we want to find a voltage, let's eliminate mesh analysis as a promising technique. It is clear that nodal analysis produces a set of three equations and three unknowns. Simplifying the circuit using source transformations yields a single loop from which we can easily find the opencircuit voltage.
To find the shortcircuit current, a similar argument can be made. So, let's eliminate nodal analysis because we are looking for a current rather than a voltage. Mesh analysis gives a set of equations to be solved. Lastly, source transformations allows the circuit to be reduced to a single loop from which we can easily find the shortcircuit current.
With the opencircuit voltage and the shortcircuit current at the terminals, the Thevenin equivalent circuit is found as stated above.
ATTEMPT a problem solution. Begin by finding the opencircuit voltage as seen by the element.
After a couple of source transformations, as seen in Problem 4.8, the circuit becomes
where
 60 + 20 I + 20 I + 20 = 0
_{}_{}_{→}
40 I _{=} 40
I _{=} 1 amp
I =
60
−
=
20 20
−
V
oc
V
oc
20
= 1
60
−
V
oc
V
^{=}
=
oc
40
V
oc
volts
−
20
Now, find the shortcircuit current through the element.
Again using source transformations, the circuit can be reduced as shown below.
Clearly,
Then,
R Th =
I sc =
40
10
=
4
ohms.
I sc
Therefore, the Thevenin equivalent circuit is
EVALUATE the solution and check for accuracy. To check the opencircuit voltage, perform nodal analysis using the circuit below.
Simplifying these equations and putting them into matrix form results in
v
v
v
50
15
0
 30
23
 2
0
 8
8
1
2
3
1200
0
=
120
which yields
Hence,
V
Th
=
v
1 =
V
oc
=
48 volts
v
2
=
40 volts
v
2 =
40 volts
v
3 =
25 volts
Since there are only independent sources, an alternative way to find
to zero and calculate the resistance of the modified network. After replacing the voltage source with a short circuit and the current source with an open circuit, the network becomes
R Th
is to set the sources
10 ΩΩΩΩ
Combine the resistors to the left of the open circuit.
Combine the resistors to the right of the open circuit.(10 Ω  10 Ω) + 15 Ω = 20 Ω
(20 Ω  30 Ω) + 8 Ω
=
20 Ω
R
20 ΩΩΩΩ
R
10 ΩΩΩΩ
An equivalent resistance of 10 Ω matches the value that was calculated using
V
oc
and
I
sc
.
Our check for accuracy was successful.
Has the problem been solved SATISFACTORILY? If so, present the solution; if not, then return to “ALTERNATIVE solutions” and continue through the process again. This problem has been solved satisfactorily. The Thevenin equivalent circuit is as follows.
Problem 4.10
Find the Thevenin equivalent as seen by R in Figure 4.1.
First, find the opencircuit voltage, where
Figure 4.1
V
Th
= V
oc
.
Using nodal analysis, At node 1 :
At node 2 :
3 A
Now,
Finally,
I
sc
 25
+
I 30
=
I
20
(20)(0.5)
=
+
30 I
30 =
−
I
0.5
amps
−
0.5
=
0
0
amps.
Since 0/0 is undefined, we need to excite the circuit with a 1V voltage source at the terminals of R in order to find R _{T}_{h} .
In matrix form,
_{N}_{o}_{w}_{,}
I
o
=
i
2
=
0.0588
and
50
 30
i
1
i
2
30 i
i

35
1
2
=
25
16
=
0.4647
 0.0588
R _{T}_{h} =
V
o
1
=
I
o
0.0588
= 17
ohms.
Therefore, the Thevenin equivalent circuit is as follows.
[4.33]
Problem 4.11
between terminals a and b.
For the circuit in Figure 4.1, find the Thevenin equivalent
20 ΩΩΩΩ
Figure 4.1
To find
R Th
, consider the circuit in Fig. (a).
20 ΩΩΩΩ
where 20  20 = 10 Ω .
(a)
Now, transform the wye subnetwork to a delta as shown in Fig. (b).
(b)
_{w}_{h}_{e}_{r}_{e} 10  30 _{=} 7.5 _{Ω} _{.}
Hence,
To find
V Th
R
Th
= R
ab
_{=} 30  (7.5 _{+} 7.5) _{=} 30  15 _{=} 10 ΩΩΩΩ
, we transform the 20V and the 5V sources to obtain the circuit shown in Fig. (c).
(c)
b
For loop 1,
For loop 2,
30
+
50
1

 2 _{=} 3i
+
30i
− i
2
 50
− 6 _{=}  i
10
1
+
_{+} 3i
30i
2
1
2
Solving (1) and (2),
i
1 =
0 A
−
−
10i
10i
2
1
Applying KVL to the output loop,
= 
0 

(1) 

= 
0 

(2) 
and
i
2 =
2 A
Figure 4.1
Therefore, the Thevenin equivalent circuit is as follows.
NORTON'S THEOREM
Norton's theorem states that a linear twoterminal circuit can be replaced by an equivalent circuit
consisting of a current source
current at the terminals and
independent sources are turned off.
I
N
in parallel with a resistor
R
N
, where
I
N is the shortcircuit
R
N is the input or equivalent resistance at the terminals when the
Problem 4.13
Find the Norton equivalent of the circuit in Figure 4.1.
In Problem 4.9, V
Recall that
oc
= R
R
N
^{=}
Th
40
volts,
; so
R
N =
I
sc
10
^{=}
4 amps, and
ohms.
Therefore, the Norton equivalent circuit is as shown.
4
R
A
10 ΩΩΩΩ
Problem 4.14
viewed from terminals:
[4.41]
Given the circuit in Figure 4.1, obtain the Norton equivalent as
(a) ab
120 V
c
d
Figure 4.1
(a) From the circuit in Fig. (a),
(a)
2 ΩΩΩΩ
R
N _{=} 4  (2 _{+} 6  3) _{=} 4  4 _{=} 2 ΩΩΩΩ
(b)
After some source transformations, the circuit becomes that shown in Fig. (c).
(c)
Applying KVL to the circuit in Fig. (c),
Hence,
and
 40 _{+} 8 i _{+} 12 _{=} 0
_{}_{}_{→}
i _{=} 7 2
V Th
I
N
=
= V
4i
Th
14 V _{=} 14 2 _{=} 7 A
=
R
N
(b) To get R _{N} , consider the circuit in Fig. (d).
(d)
R
N _{=} 2  (4 _{+} (6  3) _{=} 2  6 _{=} 1.5 ΩΩΩΩ
To get I _{N} , the circuit in Fig. (c) applies except that it needs slight modification as in Fig. (e).
Problem 4.15
Find the Norton equivalent of the circuit in Figure 4.1.
Figure 4.1
Therefore, the Norton equivalent circuit is as follows.
–1/4 A
R
MAXIMUM POWER TRANSFER
Maximum power is transferred to the load when the load resistance equals the Thevenin
resistance as seen by the load (
R
L
= R
Th
).
Problem 4.16 
Given the circuit in Figure 4.1, complete the following table. 

R
S
+
V
S
−

R L 

Figure 4.1 

V _{S} (volts) 
R _{S} (ohms) 
R _{L} (ohms) 
Power of R _{L} (watts) 

Condition #1 
20 
10 

Condition #2 
V 
10 

Condition #3 
20 
10 

Condition #4 
20 

Let p be the power of the load resistor, 
R 
L 
. Then, 
p = R 
V S + 
R 
2 R 
L 
. 


S 
L 

We want to find the maximum power transferred to the load. The maximum power is transferred to the load when the load resistance is equivalent to the Thevenin resistance as seen by the load.
In this case,
R
L
Condition #1 :
= R
S
R
L
=
and
R
S
p =
2
V
S
4R
L
= 10 ΩΩΩΩ
Condition #2 :
R
L
=
R
S
= 10 ΩΩΩΩ
Condition #3 :
p =
R
20
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