What is Electrical Conductor : Types and Its Properties

In electrical engineering, an object or material that allows the flow of electrical current is termed as a conductor. The direction of the current supply is in one or many directions. The common electrical conductors are made with substances that are made with common metals. The generation of electrical current can be done by the electrons flow, holes and in some cases, positive ions or negative ions. In metals, the electrons are the main movers but in batteries, cationic electrolytes depend on positive charge carriers. Similarly, in fuel cells, the mobile protons in the proton conductor depend on positive charge carriers. This article discusses an overview of an electrical conductor, types and properties.

What is an Electrical Conductor?

The definition of an electrical conductor is a material that allows the flow of heat, electricity otherwise sound. The electrical conductivity is the capability of conducting electricity. The best examples of electrical conductors are metals such as copper, iron, etc. These are mainly used for making wires so that the electrical current can be carried. We know that semiconductors are one kind of materials as they allow the flow of electricity through them but not extremely well. And some materials like resistors restrict the flow of current because they made very hard to stop the flow of current.


An insulator can be defined as a material that prevents the flow of current and these are mainly used for covering the wires like plastic. Some materials like superconductors offer no resistance to the electricity flow. The resistance of the conductor increases once the temperature increases.


The best examples of electrical conductors mainly include the following. An electrical conductor is known as best when the conductor is worked under the conditions of normal pressure as well as temperature like the silver.

It is not always a perfect option like a material, although because of its cost and oxide layer. This layer is called tarnish and it is not conducive. Likewise, verdigris, rust, & other kinds of oxide layers decrease conductivity. The examples of effective conductors are silver, gold, copper, aluminum, mercury, steel, iron, seawater, and concrete. More conductors like platinum, brass, bronze, graphite, dirty water and lemon juice.

Electron Flow in Electrical Conductor

The electrons flow in the conductor is not in a straight line because of the drift velocity. Because of this, the flow of electrons will get crash at each moment by atoms in the conductor. This velocity is pretty small because there are a lot of free electrons. In a conductor, the density of electrons can be estimated so that we can gauge the drift velocity for known current. When the density is larger, then the low velocity is needed for a known current. The electrons flow in the conductor is against the electric field which is denoted with ‘E’.

How a Conductor Conducts Current?

The material of the electrical conductor particle must contain no energy space between two bands like valence & conduction. In the valance band, the external electrons are attached to the atom insecurely. Once electrons get energized because of the thermal effect otherwise electromotive force, and then it flows from one band to another band.

In the conduction band, the electron acquires its liberty to travel anyplace within the conductor. The conductor is shaped with atoms. Therefore like a whole, this band is in a large number of electrons. The metallic bonds are there within the conductors, based on +ve metal ions structure. These structures are enclosed through an electron cloud.

Once a potential disparity happens in the conductor across two ends, the electrons acquire adequate energy to supply from lower energy to higher energy in this band against a minute resistance provided by conductor material. The flow of current will be in the reverse direction to the electrons flow.

Types of Electrical Conductors

There are different types of conductors which include the following.



Metal is the most conducting material, used in practical applications. For instance, the electric wire which is used around the house most likely employs copper wire like conducting material electric plug includes metal, and the inside device of electric irons includes metals like conducting material. Because metal has countless free electrons & encourages mobility The best metal conductors mainly include Silver, Copper & Gold.

  Non Metals

Non-metals are very good electrical conductors. For instance, the carbon in graphite form is extremely a good electrical conductor. In the structure of graphite, we can observe that there are only 3 to 4 carbons atoms that are utilized for connecting. For free bonding, it lefts a single electron but, most of the nonmetals are not excellent electricity conductors.

  Ionic Conductors

The solution form of conductors is called ionic conductors. The best examples of these conductors are seawater or saltwater because these are good electricity conductors.


Semiconductors are not good at conducting electricity like conductors but they still used in many applications. The best examples of semiconductors mainly include Ge (Germanium) and Si (Silicon).

Properties of Conductor

The properties of the conductor instability condition mainly include the following.

  • Conductors always permit the flow of electrons as well as ions within them.
  • The conductor’s electric field is zero which permits the electrons to flow in them.
  • The conductor’s charge density is nothing
  • Free charges mainly exist on the outside of the conductor only
  • A conductor all points are at the equal potential

There are many metals that are good electrical conductors. Because the appliance parts which supply electrical current are designed with metals. An insulator is the plastic coating on the conductor which protects us from the electric shock.

Thus, this is all about electrical conductor which is applicable in power transmission is typically stranded. These conductors include huge flexibility as well as mechanical strength when contrasted to an only wire of a similar cross-section region. Usually, in these conductors, the middle wire is enclosed by the different layers of wires. The conductor size can be decided through its corresponding copper cross-section region and the number of strings with the diameter of each string. Here is a question for you, please mention some more conductors?


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