The study of the presence and flow of electric charge. Charges, currents, fields, potentials.

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Is this a good explanation of electron mobility to the layman?

I'm writing an informative paper on graphene for my writing class (layman-oriented), and was describing electron mobility in very simplified terms. Let me know if anything is mistaken, badly ...
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1answer
24 views
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1answer
13 views

The working of rheostat/ potentiometer [on hold]

I can't grasp the concept of how a rheostat divides potential and acts as a variable resistance in a circuit.I have tried asking my teachers and fellows but their explanation hasn't been satisfactory. ...
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1answer
81 views

How to find the distribution of charge on two spheres connected by a conducting wire?

A solid metal sphere of radius $R$ has charge $+2Q$. A hollow spherical shell of radius $3R$, concentric with the first sphere, has net charge $-Q$. What would be the final distribution of the charge ...
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1answer
110 views

Measured voltage on coil

I have a simple circuit of coil with inductance L $$u_c(t)= -L\frac{di}{dt}$$ and AC source with output voltage $u_s$ What is actually measured by the voltmeter ($u_c$, $u_s$ or $u_s - u_c$)? If ...
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5answers
762 views

What causes contact resistance?

When two components are combined in an electric circuit, there is apart from their own resistances a contact resistance at their junction. This causes a sudden voltage drop of ...
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2answers
46 views

Why is voltage essential in circuits?

I understand what voltage is, but why is it necessary for an electric circuit to function? Why can't current flow without a voltage?
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1answer
505 views

How can a fruit be used as a battery cell?

Fresh fruits can be used as batteries for glowing bulbs, but how this is possible? I mean how can electric charges flow through fruits? Do they contain chemicals like cells?
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1answer
217 views

Mean-free-time between collisions and drift-velocity

In a physics text book I need help to make sense of the part highlighted in yellow: This is out of context of course, so just to make it clearer: $\tau$ is the mean free time of the electrons in a ...
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53 views

Is electricty matter? [closed]

Electricity is a flow of electrons. I'm right until here, and matter is something that takes up space. (I can't be in the same place as my friend does). And correct me if I'm wrong but an electron ...
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2answers
326 views

What happens when you pass a current through a coil made of a ferromagnetic substance?

I know when you pass a current through a length of copper coil or a solenoid, there is the induction of a magnetic flux. But what of the coil made of the ferromagnetic material, the permanent type ...
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1answer
617 views

Relationship between electrical resistivity and density

I just read this answer on EE.SE and that triggered a doubt in me. If I were asked whether there is any relationship between the electrical resistivity and the density of a substance I'd answer ...
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1answer
138 views

How can a material conduct heat but not electricity

Mica is a good conductor of heat but an electrical insulator. According to free electron theory (which applies only to metals) free electrons carry heat and electricity. Therefore, thermal ...
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1answer
372 views

Impurity scattering temperature dependence

Is there any temperature dependence of relaxation time in impurity scattering of conducting electrons? It seems to me that there is none. But, some people claim that there is. So if you could ...
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1answer
61 views

Why do high voltage transmission line workers need a Faraday cage suit?

In this video the high voltage transmission line workers are wearing a Faraday cage suit. Why is this needed? Without the Faraday cage, the resistance of the human would be very high compared to the ...
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1answer
62 views

Electric Motors: why do they draw more current when stalled, and less when moving? [duplicate]

I'm familiar with how an electric motor works, and also familiar with what stall current and free current refers to in an electric motor. I'm also somehow familiar with the notions of energy being ...
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3answers
391 views

Polarization vector of dielectric electrostatics

I know two laws for Polarization vector of a dielectric material $$\vec P = N q \vec{\Delta L}$$ Where $N$ is the number of dipoles per meter cube, $\vec{\Delta L}$ is the vector that represents the ...
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1answer
273 views

Electrical Resistance and chemistry

Can some one describe or explain what happens when too much current is passed through lets say a copper wire, I am looking for an explanation to do with physics and chemistry. For instance we have ...
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0answers
46 views

Resistance of a metal sphere

How would you go about calculating the electrical resistance of a sphere when you only know it's radius and conductivity? I know with cables you can use $$ R = L/(g \cdot S),$$ but I don't know how ...
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2answers
2k views

The electric field of a conductive sphere containing a charge - grounded vs not grounded

Let's suppose we have a sphere but unlike theoretical ones it'll have some thickness say $\Delta r$ and inner radius $R$. What I was wondering about is how will it behave if we place some charge $q$ ...
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4answers
1k views

Charge of an electric wire

If an electric current is flowing through an electric wire, can we consider that wire charged? The answer is required with a proof. Can we consider the wire to be charged positively or negatively?
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2answers
26 views

Relation between power & thickness of the filament

Tell me what relationship is used to solve the question given below. There are three bulbs of power 60, 100 and 20; which one has thickest filament for same source? (a) 100 (b) 20 (c) 60 ...
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0answers
10 views

Electrode (de)conditioning for breakdown

The breakdown voltage between two electrodes in vacuum depends on their surface condition. If you increase the voltage across the electrodes smoothly, at some voltage $V_0$ you will see the first ...
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2answers
4k views

Conversion of Moving coil galvanometer to ammeter

A galvanometer can be converted into an ammeter by connecting a low resistance (called shunt resistance) in parallel to the galvanometer. Firstly, why do we need to connect the resistance? If a ...
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1answer
778 views

Electric field from conductive to dielectric media

I am interested in the main difference between transitions from electric fields from Conductive to Conductive/ Dielectric to Dielectric and Dielectric/Conductive media. What are the boundary ...
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1answer
331 views

Question about superconductivity

A long cylinder of radius $R$ is made from two different material. Its radius $r<r_0$ $(r_0<R)$ part is a material with superconducting transition temperature $T_1$, and its $r_0<r<R$ ...
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2answers
38 views

potential difference across a bulb

I am doing some self studying over the summer for fun and I'm working from a book that does not provide answers. I came across the following question, and I will present my solution. I was hoping ...
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1answer
51 views

Why isn't this calculation of the energy of a light wave correct? [closed]

I'm trying to calculate the energy $J(T)$ that monochromatic light wave with electric field strength $E(T)$ supplies to unit electric charge over period of time $T$: $J(T)=\int\limits ...
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1answer
28 views

When potential difference is equal to the emf, isn't the current 0?

I have been told that the $emf$ is equal to the potential difference across the terminals of a cell when no current is flowing. Does that mean that the current is zero ($I=0$)?
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1answer
105 views

Why do some (older) wind generators have more than three blades?

Based on my personal observations, newer windmills seem to have three blades while older ones tend to have four or even more. This question has excellent discussion on my three is an optimal number. ...
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1answer
102 views

Microscopic fields inside a conductor

In a neutral conductor if we assume electrons as point charges, the electric field in the space between them cannot be identically zero. This microscopic field may be very weak. What if we were very ...
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1answer
57 views

How are analog clocks synchronized? clocks on the frequency (50 Hz or 60 Hz) connected with power cable to the electricity network

Those clocks that use a motor that runs exactly on the frequency (50 Hz or 60 Hz) and connected with power cable to the electricity network. I mean - a frequency controlled clock / alarm - the ...
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2answers
294 views

If we connect a block of p-type semiconductor only to a positive terminal, will it become positively charged?

Connect the positive terminal of a battery to a piece of p-doped semiconductor, say, silicon doped with boron. Will the terminal pull electrons out of the doped silicon, or equivalently, inject holes ...
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0answers
25 views

Drift velocity in Silicon wafer

I have been asked the following question in a problem sheet: A $100mm$ diameter, $0.5mm$ thick silicon wafer at room temperature has a charge carrier density of $1.5×10^{10} cm^{-3}$. A potential ...
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1answer
157 views

How is current produced in semiconductors or metals?

I think current is the movement of electrons through the wire or semiconductor, thus when I press the switch of the light bulb the electrons go from positive part to tungsten and light is produced. ...
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2answers
58 views

Magnet dimensions for 3-phase permanent generator

I'm making a 3-phase permenant generator. According to Faraday's law, the emf produced is negative number of turns times the change in magnetic flux over the change in time. If it is only the CHANGE ...
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1answer
65 views

Can lightning actually weld fillings in your teeth?

So, I remember sometime in my childhood, someone was teaching me about lightning safety, and they explained that it was important to crouch low but keep as little contact with the ground as possible, ...
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1answer
85 views

Potential difference between Earth's surface and 2 meters above

Assuming Earth is a charged sphere of radius $R = 6400\times10^3$ m with uniform surface charge density $\sigma = -10^{-9}$ C/m2 and with $\epsilon_0 = 8.85\times10^{-12}$ F/m I find that ...
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1answer
368 views

How is the current flow perpendicular to the wire?

This answer gives a great explanation of how surface charge builds up to force the current to move perpendicular to the wire: http://physics.stackexchange.com/a/102936/41086 However, it fails to ...
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1answer
330 views

If I charge a battery using a much higher current, can it explode?

If I have a 12V 4Ah lead acid battery and use a battery charger that, let's say for example, can charge 10A, 50A, or 100A. If I theoretically turned it to 100A will the battery explode? I understand ...
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0answers
22 views

Three phase permanent magnet generator question

For my three phase permanent magnet generator, my coil plate is going to remain stationary to avoid having to use a commutator. Instead my magnetic plate will rotate. If instead of having just one ...
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0answers
23 views

Can an open cup attenuate radio waves as well as a Faraday cage?

The problem is that thieves in my neighborhood are using a power amplifier to increase the "bubble distance" of my car so that it thinks that my key fob, which is sitting in my house, is next to the ...
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1answer
30 views

How do domestic appliances work at different voltages when the applied voltage is same for every appliance?

Generally, the electric connections at home are in parallel combination. How is it possible for a geyser(220 Volts) and a cellphone charger (5 volts) to operate at different voltages in a parallel ...
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1answer
177 views

How do electrons distribute themselves along a wire attached to one pole of a battery?

Let's assume we have an electrochemical cell, like an AA battery. We attach a long straight wire to the negative terminus of the battery, the other end of the wire extends right away from the battery ...
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5answers
137 views

The potentiality of the electric field

Could you please explain using just words why electric the field is potentially? I know the proof using integral: $$A = \int_{12}q\vec{E}\cdot{d}\vec{r} = qQ\int_{12}\frac{\vec{r}\cdot{d}\vec{r}}{r^3} ...
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3answers
148 views

Why does lightning generate multiple branches?

Everyone have seen and knows how lightning occurs. But then I realized that lightning never occurs in straight lines but it follows branching. But Why is that so? Why can't lightning goes in straight ...
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1answer
67 views

Can electrons reflect light?

Lately, I have been watching sparks while connecting my electronic devices and I can notice that electricity is kind of blue, and theoretically it's blue because it reflects blue wavelengths?? And ...
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1answer
24 views

Current - Voltage curve for non-ohmic material

Forgive me for I am a math student and am quite ignorant in these topics. I would like to know, at least implicitly, how the current intensity of a lightbulb, for example, relates to the potential ...
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1answer
20 views

DIY Ring Light: Grounding Bulbs in Circuit

I'm looking at making a DIY ring light using multiple fluorescent light bulbs. I'm in New Zealand and we get 230-240V and an current of 10A. I know from this I could rig up to 24 100W bulbs in series ...