Difference Between Electrical and Electronics

Primary Difference

There are some fields of science which are so similar to each other that finding difference between them becomes difficult. Not only do they sound similar, some even have almost the same meaning, which makes it difficult for people to understand how exactly one is opposite to the other. This also spreads over the field of engineering where two types of engineering as very similar to each other and the same can be said about these terms in physics. The two terms which are being talked about are known as Electrical and Electronics which, as the name suggests, are similar to each other. But in reality there are differences and that is the reason both exist as a separate subject. The dissimilarities between them will be discussed in this space. The main change between them comes in the manner of their working. Electronics is the type of technology which works with the motion of electrons which are controlled in an orderly manner. On the other hand, the electrical technology works in the same manner of controlling an entity but it is not the motion of electrons. In another way, electronics properties depend on the electron properties especially in the case of semiconductor medium while electrical technology is free from the dependence on this. Another way of showing they are dissimilar is that devices which are used to show information can be termed as electronic ones while the way those devices are constructed and the information is provided are known as an electrical process. This can be explained in a better way that if there is a device which uses electricity just as a source of energy it is known as an electronic device while if a device is using electricity as a medium of obtaining the information it is known as an electrical device. In terms of engineering and circuitry, when a device circuits have the ability to think on their own, or in other words can deduce logic they are known as electronic circuits while electrical circuits are the ones which do not have the ability to take decisions on their own and mostly act as a medium for other processes. In broader terms, an electrical technology is the one which covers everything related to electricity, current and the circuits which are involved while electronics is the type of technology which becomes a little more specific and talks about diodes, transistors and the stuff which does not require any mechanical connections. There are many other differences too which will be explained at the end while a brief description of two types is given in the next two paragraphs.

Comparison Chart

ElectricalElectronics
DefinitionIt is the technology which includes everything related to electricity and its other applications such as voltages, currents, frequency, circuits, digital and analog devices.It is a subset of electrical technology and involves few functions of the same engineering in a better and more complex way.
ExplanationElectrical devices are the ones which are made from a material that conducts electricity.Electronic devices are the ones which are made up of semiconductor material.
SourceAre independent of other sources.Require the movement of electrons for their functions.
ExampleWires, switches, and fuse.Capacitor, diodes, and transistors.

Definition of Electrical

In terms of engineering, electrical is the technology which includes everything related to electricity and its other applications such as voltages, currents, frequency, circuits, digital and analog devices, electronic devices, measurement, power, motors and generators and a lot of other stuff which basically covers everything. But this is not the complete study and therefore other types of engineering such as electronics and power originate from this. This is the study of devices without the movement of electrons. The properties of an electrical device do not depend on any other factor but on how they are arranged by the person performing a task. The circuits which are used in this do not have the power to make decisions the programming and other decisions are made later on. The best example of an electrical device is a torch, which does not involve any kind of circuits and logics, therefore, it is termed as an electrical device. It is a type of device which will use electricity directly to perform the task. For example, an electric charger which is used to charge a cellphone is connected to the switch and directly gets electricity to charge the phone.

Definition of Electronics

This is different from electrical technology yet very similar since it is a subset of electrical technology and involves few functions of the same engineering in a better and more complex way. The main working principle of electronic devices is that they use the motion of electrons as the main source of energy, any device which has electrons providing energy is termed as electronic. These devices involve circuitry and there is the ability to make a decision on its own since they are programmed and can easily add more information to perform a task properly. It does not depend on the direct source of electricity and is more logic based. There is also no involvement of electro mechanic devices either. The best example of such a device is a computer which has complex circuits at every part that are used to run various programs. It is a device which is electric and electronic at the same time since some functions work on electricity but others are converted into electronics.

Differences in a Nutshell

  1. Electrical devices are the ones which are made from a material that conducts electricity while electronic devices are the ones which are made up of semiconductor material.
  2. The electrical devices are made up of metals mostly while electronic devices are made up of silicon.
  3. Electronic devices require the movement of electrons for their functions while electrical devices are independent of other sources.
  4. Electrical devices do not have circuitry while electronic devices have proper circuits.
  5. Electrical devices do not have the power of thinking and creating logics while electronic devices are programmed properly and require logic to perform its function.
  6. The best example of electronic devices is a capacitor, diodes, and transistors while the best example of an electrical device is wires, switches, and fuse.

Comparison Video

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Conclusion

Electric and Electronics are the two most common used terms in Engineering which have been forming the basis of the subject. They are different from each other, actually opposite and therefore it becomes that much more important for people to have a better understanding of how to use them, hopefully this article will go a long way in completing that task.

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss

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