Voltage and current sources can be independent or dependent. Their respective circuit symbols. Independent sources are usually shown as a circle while dependent sources are usually shown as a diamond-shape. Independent sources can have a DC output or a functional output; some examples are a sine wave, square wave, impulse, and linear ramp. Dependent sources can be used to implement a voltage or current which is a function of some other voltage or current in the circuit. Dependent sources are often used to model active circuits that are used for signal amplification.
A basic understanding of electronic circuits is important even if the designer does not intend to become a proficient electrical engineer. In many real-life engineering projects, it is often necessary to communicate, and also negotiate, specifications between engineering teams having different areas of expertise. Therefore, a basic understanding of electronic circuits will allow the mechanical engineer to evaluate whether or not a given electrical specification is reasonable and feasible.
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