What is Electric Power? – Electric Power Formula, Units, Example

Electricity powers much of our modern world, from lighting our homes to running our gadgets. But have you ever wondered how electricity itself is measured and understood? In this article, we’ll delve into the concept of electric power, exploring its formula, units of measurement, and practical applications, all explained in simple terms suitable for eighth-grade students. 

What is Electric Power?

Electric power is the rate at which electrical energy is transferred by an electric circuit. In simpler words, it’s the amount of work done per unit of time by an electric current. Think of it like the strength of a river’s flow – the higher the power, the more electricity is being delivered. 

Electric Power Formula

The formula to calculate electric power is straightforward:  



  • P represents electric power (measured in watts) 
  • V denotes voltage (measured in volts) 
  • I stands for current (measured in amperes) 

This formula tells us that electric power is equal to the product of voltage and current. So, if you increase either the voltage or the current in a circuit, the electric power will increase as well. 

Unit of Electric Power

Electric power is measured in watts (W), named after James Watt, the Scottish inventor. One watt is equivalent to one joule per second. This means that if a device has a power rating of 100 watts, it consumes 100 joules of energy every second. 

SI Unit of Electric Power

The International System of Units (SI) also recognizes other units of power, such as kilowatts (kW) and megawatts (MW), which are commonly used for larger-scale applications like powering buildings or cities. 

Types of Electric Power

Majorly there are two types of electrical power,

  • AC Power: Alternating current (AC) power is the type of electricity commonly used in homes and businesses. It constantly changes direction, flowing first in one direction and then reversing. 
  • DC Power: Direct current (DC) power flows consistently in one direction, making it suitable for devices like batteries and solar panels. 

What is Electric Energy?

Electric energy is the total amount of electrical work done over time. It’s measured in watt-hours (Wh) or kilowatt-hours (kWh). While electric power tells us the rate of energy transfer, electric energy tells us the total amount of energy consumed. 

Applications of Electric Power

Electric power finds application in various aspects of our daily lives, including: 

  • Lighting: Illuminating homes, streets, and buildings. 
  • Heating and Cooling: Running air conditioners, heaters, and refrigerators. 
  • Transportation: Powering electric vehicles. 
  • Communication: Operating devices like smartphones and computers. 

Final Notes

Understanding electric power is crucial for comprehending how electricity functions in our world. By grasping the formula, units, and applications of electric power, we gain insight into the fundamental workings of electrical systems. 

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Q: Define electric power.  

A: Electric power is the rate at which electrical energy is transferred by an electric circuit. It’s measured in watts and represents the amount of work done per unit time by an electric current. 

Q: What is the electric power unit?  

A: The unit of electric power is the watt (W), named after James Watt. Other common units include kilowatts (kW) and megawatts (MW) for larger-scale applications. 

Q: What is the formula of electric power?  

A: The formula to calculate electric power is P=VI, where P represents power (in watts), V denotes voltage (in volts), and I stands for current (in amperes). 

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