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Name: Deniz D.
Status: N/A
Age: 20s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 2000-2001

How does the resistance of skin differ under AC and DC current conditions?


The resistance does not differ significantly under AC vs DC conditions. What differs is the time over which current flows in one direction or the other. DC current flows steadily in one direction. AC current oscillates back and forth sixty times per second.

For DC current, the body can counter effects for only a fraction of a second. Within a very short time, 10 to 12 volts may be enough to interrupt electrical signals within your body (brain, heart, ...). The AC current oscillates so fast that your body is better able to deal with it. Greater voltage is necessary to interrupt your body. For only 10-15 Volts, you have a little time to pull away from the electric source. Still, the 120V of a standard outlet provides enough current that the oscillations won't save you from electrocution.

Dr. Ken Mellendorf
Illinois Central College

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