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    #1

    Electrical resistances?

    Is "resistance" used in "electrical resistance" uncountable?

    Are these expressions correct?
    1. We checked the resistance of iron and nickel.
    2. We checked the resistances of iron and nickel.
    3. We checked the resistance values of iron and nickel.

    Or should I say, "We checked the resistance of iron and that of nickel"?

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Electrical resistances?

    I really don't see much difference.

    I would not assume, if you used #1, that you meant some nickel-iron alloy.
    #2 doesn't sound natural, though I don't think there is anything actually wrong with it.
    #3, with a tiny amendment, "of iron and of nickel" is the clearest with no room for mistake.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Electrical resistances?

    But I'd use a fourth option: 'We checked the resistance of iron and of nickel.'

    But with another verb, like compare - when you're comparing relative resistances - you couldn't just repeat the 'of' like that. Then, I'd say: 'We compared the resistance values of iron and nickel'; but I think a 2-like version would be OK: 'We compared the resistances of iron and nickel'. As Barb says, making 'resistance' countable sounds odd, but I wouldn't say it was wrong.

    b

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    #4

    Re: Electrical resistances?

    I am an electrical engineer. You can say "resistances." We recorded the resistances of the motor windings to check for any shorts.

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