A human wire
A chain of volunteers from the audience is used to complete a circuit and allow some music to be played.
- Source of music, phone, mp3 player.
- Wires and connectors to make the circuit.
- Conductive handles to enable a good contact to be made.
- Audience members to complete the circuit.
- An system to play the music.
This requires preparation of some electrical connections. Prepare a plug which will plug into the source of music that you have chosen – a mono plug (rather than stereo) will work best. Connect the earth contact to a conductive handle, such as a piece of copper pipe using a length of wire. Connect the centre contact to another piece of wire and to the centre contact of the input plug of the amplifier. Connect the earth contact of the amplifier input to another conductive handle. When your human wire joins hands the circuit is complete and the music should be heard.
All our cells are containers of salty water which we have shown conducts electricity. The conduction through and around our bodies is sufficient, in this case, to allow enough current to pass to allow the music to be heard.
Wet hands work best, so if the human wire is a little nervous it will help.
If you do not have a long piece of wire to connect the central contacts of the output and input plugs you can have your human wire stand in a circle.
The current flowing is very small and unlikely to be a hazard. The major hazard in this demonstration is the trip hazard of the electrical wires that may be used.