A voltmeter is an instrument that measures voltages of either direct or alternating electric current on a scale usually defined in volts, millivolts (0.001 volt), or kilovolts (1,000 volts). Today, the typical voltmeters for commercial or laboratory usage are likely to employ an electromechanical mechanism in which the current flowing through wire coils and is translated into a voltage value. One type of voltmeter is the electrostatic voltmeter which uses electrostatic forces, and is the only voltmeter which measure voltage directly rather than by the effect of current.