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What is the difference between impedance and resistance?

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By its very nature a DC circuit will not exhibit any form of Reactance, therefore opposition to current flow will always be measured in Resistance. Reactance exists in two forms, Capacitive & Inductive. Impedance can therefore be thought of as the opposition of electrical current flow in a AC circuit
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Tutor

Impedance is complex consist of resitance and reactance (capacitor and or inductor), while resistance is purely real, consist of resistor only.
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The Artist

Impedance comes into play usually when the circuit is AC powered and has Capacitors&/Inductors&/Resistors. Impedance is the collective resistance due to both reactance and Resistance (Ohmic). On the other hand, Resistance is just the ohmic resistance offered by a resistor.
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Expert Teacher

Resistance is a concept used for DC (direct currents) whereas impedance is the AC (alternating current) equivalent. Resistance is due to electrons in a conductor colliding with the ionic lattice of the conductor meaning that electrical energy is converted into heat. Different materials have different... read more
Resistance is a concept used for DC (direct currents) whereas impedance is the AC (alternating current) equivalent. Resistance is due to electrons in a conductor colliding with the ionic lattice of the conductor meaning that electrical energy is converted into heat. Different materials have different resistivities (a property defining how resistive a material of given dimensions will be). However, when considering AC you must remember that it oscillates as a sine wave so the sign is always changing. This means that other effects need to be considered - namely inductance and capacitance. Inductance is most obvious in coiled wire. When a current flows through a wire a circular magnetic field is created around it. If you coil the wire into a solenoid the fields around the wire sum up and you get a magnetic field similar to that of a bar magnet on the outside but you get a uniform magnetic field on the inside. With AC since the sign is always changing the direction of the field in the wires is always changing - so the magnetic field of the solenoid is also changing all the time. Now when field lines cut across a conductor an emf is generated in such a way to reduce the effects that created it (this is a combination of Lenz's and Faraday's laws which state mathematically that E=N*d(thi)/dt , where thi is the magnetic flux linkage). This means that when an AC current flows through a conductor a small back emf or back current is induced reducing the overall current. Capacitance is a property best illustrated by two metal plates separated by an insulator (which we call a capacitor). When current flows electrons build up on the negative plate. An electric field propagates and repels electrons on the opposite plate making it positively charged. Due to the build up of electrons on the negative plate incoming electrons are also repelled so the total current eventually falls to zero in an exponential decay. The capacitance is defined as the charge stored/displaced across a capacitor divided by the potential difference across it and can also be calculated by the size of the plates and the primitivity of the insulator. read less
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DC circuit will NOT exhibit Reactance (exists in Capacitive /Inductive form), opposition to current flow in DC circuits will be measured in Resistance.
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Math

opposition in current flow in dc circuit is resistance(R) but in ac circuit it is called impedence(Z).
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Math Teacher

resistancece is a concept used for DC (direct currents) whereas impedance is the AC (alternating current) equivalent. Resistance is due to electrons in a conductor colliding with the ionic lattice of the conductor meaning that electrical energy is converted into heat
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Engineering Classes

Resitance is not affected by operating frequency but impedance is. Impedance is given by Z = R + jX. X is given by X= WL or -1/WC for inductor or capacitor in the case of AC circuits. For DC analysis Z=R.
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Tutor

A DC circuit will not exhibit any form of Reactance, therefore opposition to current flow will always be measured in Resistance. In addition to Resistance, AC circuits also exhibit Reactance.. Reactance exists in two forms, Capacitive & Inductive. The combination of Reactance & Resistance is called Impedance.... read more
A DC circuit will not exhibit any form of Reactance, therefore opposition to current flow will always be measured in Resistance. In addition to Resistance, AC circuits also exhibit Reactance.. Reactance exists in two forms, Capacitive & Inductive. The combination of Reactance & Resistance is called Impedance. Impedance can therefore be thought of as the opposition of electrical current flow in a AC circuit. read less
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Physicist UPSC 2010 batch

For understanding, please note that : 1. Impedance and resistance, both refer to opposition to flow of electrons. but resistance is more defined by the nature of the material,length and cross sectional area. whereas impedance is due to a result of inductance(lens law) and capacitance.
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