How Much Electrical Power Is Dissipated in The Copper Wire?

As copper is a good conductor of electricity, it is widely used in household appliances and in other electrical products. Having the best electrical conductivity after silver, copper offers several other advantages such as its low-cost availability, provides resistance to corrosion, its ductility, and heat resistance. Given all of that, it is crucial to know the amount of electrical power burned up in the copper wire.

Knowing the dissipated power value of a copper wire will allow you to use appropriate cables for your electrical fittings and appliances. Keeping the electrical system safe and secure, it is necessary that you use the right set of wires.

It doesn’t matter if you have electrical knowledge or not; learning how much electrical power is dissipated in the copper wire is for your benefit. From power generation, distribution, and transmission, copper wires are used in wide arrays of industries and trades. So, stick to this article and get yourself informed about the power dissipation of copper wires.

What is electrical power dissipation?

To fully grasp the concept, let us first see what it means by electrical power dissipation and why it happens in the first place.

When electricity passes through an object or a wire, it faces some resistance. The resistance causes electricity to produce heat, and as a result of that, electrical power loses energy. The rate at which the heat is dissipated is known as power. The rate at which the electrical power is supplied and at which it is received will be different because of the resistance caused in between.

In simpler words, power dissipation is the value that depicts the amount of energy changed into heat.

Relationship between the resistance, voltage, and current

Power dissipation is a major concern for all, and to understand it clearly, you need to learn the relationship between resistance, voltage, and current.

In accordance with the laws of physics, the current is directly related to the voltage, whereas; it is inversely proportional to the resistance. Ohm’s law further certifies that if you increase the voltage, the current will also increase, and as a result of that, power dissipation will also be raised.

In case you lower the value of resistance, the current will decrease, and as a result of that, power dissipation will also decline.

How to figure the power depletion of the wire?

Power dissipation of the wire can be calculated using the formula stated by Ohm’s law. In order to calculate the value of power, you need to know two of three values: current, voltage, and resistance. Once you have the values, use the required formula to calculate power.

Ohm’s law gives the formula, which speaks that the current is equivalent to the voltage divided by the resistance value. It is represented as I = V/R, where I is denoted as current, V as voltage, and R as resistance.

When it comes to calculating power, the formula says that it is equal to the product of current and voltage. It is signified as P = IR, where P stands for power, I as current, and R as resistance.

Given the Ohm’s law, the formulas can be converted into other forms as per the values provided.

If you have the values of current and resistance, you can calculate the power using the formula P = I2 × R, where P is power, I is current, and R is the value of resistance.

In case you have the values of voltage and resistance, you can compute the power using the formula P = V2/R, where R is resistance, V is voltage, and P represents the value of power.

Remember that the unit of power is known as watt and is denoted by W. The unit of Resistance ohm is represented as Ω, the voltage is calculated in volt signified as V, and the unit of current is known as the Ampere (A).

Power dissipation in copper wire

Copper is one of the most popular metals to be used for electrical wiring. While the formula to determine power dissipation of the wire is discussed above, it is the value of resistance that plays a huge role. No matter if it is copper wire or any other type of wire, the above formulas can be used to find out the value of power dissipation.

Keeping in mind the P = I2 × R formula, we also need to see what makes the resistance increase or decrease. The resistance of any wire directly depends on the dimensions of the wire. If you increase the length of the wire, it will result in an upsurge in resistance, and if you expand the cross-sectional area, the resistance will fall. Other than that, it is the material resistivity that affects the overall results.

So, the formula is derived as resistance is equivalent to the resistivity of material into the wire length, divided by the cross-sectional area. Characterized as R = ρl/A, where R stands for total resistance, ρ is the value of material’s resistivity, l is the length of wire, and A is the cross-sectional area.


While you cannot give an exact figure of electrical power dissipation in the copper wire, you can find it out easily. All you have to do is put values in the formula, and you will have the value of power dissipation. From your TV to the generator, copper wires are everywhere. Check one of the wires and see if you can deduce how much electrical power it dissipates.