Electrostatics is concerned with the field and potential of stationary electrical charges and electric charge distributions. Problems are this type are almost exclusively concerned with mathematics of geometries using the inverse-square law.

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Does Gauss' Law apply to real physical solid conductors?

In a conductor there is no electric field because there is no charge. There is no charge inside because any charges present inside would repel each other and be driven to the surface of the conductor. ...
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1answer
10 views

Binding Energy of an Electric Dipole

My question is structured in two parts: Is there any way to isolate the charges of an electric dipole? What is the binding energy of an electric dipole? To put it in another way, is there ...
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3answers
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How come we talk about gravitational potential energy and not gravitational potential?

With regards to gravity the equation learned is $$U=-\frac{GMm}{r}$$ And the relationship to force is $$F=-\frac{dU}{dr}$$ In electrostatics we instead talk about electric field and electric ...
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1answer
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Does magnitude of a charge influence magnitude of force that individual charge exerts on another charge [on hold]

two point charges, q1 and q2, are placed 0.3m apart on the x-axis, as shown in the figure above. Charge q1 has a value of -3 nano Coulomb and q2 has a value of +4.8 x10^-8 C. The net electric field ...
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2answers
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Is a given charge density a surface charge density or volume charge density?

The exact question goes like this: In a certain electronic tube, electrons are emitted from a hot plane metal surface, and collected by a plane metal plane parallel to the emitter, at a distance ...
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1answer
23 views

Image charge method to find electric field [on hold]

The following is a question from my tutorial on boundary value problems and image charge method- A point charge +q is placed at (0, 0, d) above a grounded infinite conducting plane defined by z = 0. ...
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Determine the eletric potential energy $U(r)$ from a point charge $Q$ at a point $r$ at uniform electrostatic field $E$ [on hold]

I´m trying answer this question but I only have some conceptual ideas. I know that a uniform electrostatic field E is represented by the figure above In my book the author tells that we should use ...
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1answer
33 views

Electrostatic Potential Energy Integral

I'm trying to calculate the total energy of a simple two charge system through the integral for electrostatic energy of a system given in Griffiths' book: $$U = \frac{\epsilon_0}{2}\int_V E^2 dV .$$ ...
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17 views

Force between an electric charge and square? [closed]

An insulated square piece with total charge is Q, the side length is d. An electric charge placed on the axis of square and distance to square is d/2. (assume q*Q >0). calculate the force between the ...
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electric field due to planes of charge [closed]

A battery consists of three large non-conducting planes that are parallel to one another and separated by 100 nm air gaps. The surface charge density of each plane is -δ, -3δ, and +4δ, in that order. ...
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3answers
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Is there a place on the equipotential surface where a charge feels no electric force? [closed]

I'm given a graph of an equipotential surface where I need to find a place where a charge feels no electric force. I feel like it will be where the voltage is zero, which would be 2G on the graph, ...
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1answer
74 views

Why isn't the electric field just a mathematical tool?

I'm limiting my question to this field because it is the only one I know of with a certain degree of knowledge. I doubt they really exist because of the following reasoning: Coulombs law was stated ...
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2answers
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Conductors and Uniqueness Theorem

I'm working with Griffiths Electrodynamics, and he introduces a uniqueness theorem: First Uniqueness Theorem: The potential $V$ in a volume $\Omega$ is uniquely determined if (a) the charge ...
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1answer
25 views

Using Maximum Principle to see conductor is equipotential

This is a problem from electrostatics, but I'm trying to understand it in terms of harmonic functions. Let $B\subset\mathbb{R^3}$ be a conductor. It can be shown that the electric potential ...
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2answers
52 views

Curvature of electrostatic potential is zero

Could you please expound upon this claim? I found such claim on Zangwill's Classical Electrodynamics, which states that constraint coming from Laplacian equation implies electrostatic potential has ...
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2answers
861 views

Why is the shape of lightning or an electric spark a zig-zag line?

Why is the shape of the lightning (or an electric spark) always of a zig-zag nature? Why is it never just a straight line? Image source.
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3answers
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Can two electrons get ever so close as to touch each other?

My friend and I were studying for our EM test when we started to think about what happens to the electric field near an infinite line of charge. $$E = \frac{\lambda}{2\pi\rho\epsilon_{0}}$$ As you ...
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3answers
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Why static electricity only concentrates and flows on the surface?

Anything insides Faraday Cage or Faraday Suit is protected from Electric Field outside. I don't understand what restricts the flow of free electrons to surface on the cage only? How does that happen? ...
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1answer
47 views

Gauss Theorem:Electric field of an uniformly charged non-conducting spherical shell

I want to know the electric field of an uniformly charged non-conducting spherical shell. I know that in case of conductors(metals),the sphere can be shell or it can be solid,but in both the cases ...
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0answers
35 views

Find the field of two infinite strips of width $b$ [closed]

Q:The two charged strips in the following picture have width $b$, infinite height,and negligible thickness(in the direction perpendicular to the page).Their densities per unit area are $\sigma$ ...
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1answer
49 views

Can you get a static shock in a vacuum if you are not touch the object?

For example when you hop on a trampoline sometimes you will be shocked before you even touch the tramp. Does the shock have to pass through the air to get to you or can it work in a vacuum?
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11 views

What are the limiting conditions for one side of a charged parallel plate capacitor to discharge to ground [duplicate]

@annav Earlier I asked a similar question with full description but the stackexchange system put it on hold. It is entitled "to annamitra palit re capacitor discharge" . I am stumped by the fact ...
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24 views

Is there any simulation program for electrostatic and magnetostatic fields? [duplicate]

please can any one suggest me a good program for simulating electrostatic and magnetostatic fields (forces,flux density, energy and potential) ?
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2answers
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Confusion about Gauss's law for Electrostatics

I just learning about Gauss's law in integral and differential form. There's something I'm a bit confused about: Let $\vec{r}$ be the location of your test charge with respect to the origin, and ...
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1answer
30 views

Potential Differences (Voltage) from Point Charges [closed]

Identical +1.8 micro Colomb charges are fixed to adjacent corners of a square. What charge (magnitude and algebraic sign) should be fixed to one of the empty corners, so that the total electric ...
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61 views

To Annamitra Palit re capacitor discharge [closed]

@Anamitra Palit , I have read the discussion of 2012 re discharge of a parallel plates cap to ground from one pole, and was quite confused. So I made a series of experiments charging a 1 microFar cap ...
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3answers
82 views

What is special about the ratio $Q/V$ that we give it the name Capacitance?

Why is the ratio Charge/Potential important? Also, usually when we add charge, the potential changes. Then why do we care how much charge we can put on a conductor for a given potential.
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2answers
44 views

Draw the charge configuration according to the electric field [closed]

I'm trying to draw the charge configuration outside the regions that lead to the given electric field patterns. Can someone show me how?
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0answers
18 views

Will charges redistribute on the surface of an insulator?

When I shot an electron beam onto an insulator, electrons will be knocked out of the material, leaving an immobile positive charge at their place. Some of the knocked out electrons might manage to ...
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0answers
34 views

Laplace's equation with spherical, cylindrical, and planar symmetry [closed]

Find the general solution to Laplace's equation for spherical symmetry (everything can only depend on $r$, the radius), cylindrical symmetry (everything can only depend on $s$, the radius), and ...
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0answers
29 views

How does a battery work?

How does the positive terminal of the battery attract electrons? Does the electric field emitted by the positive terminal attract the electrons?
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1answer
53 views

Electron electric field

As we know the fundamental unit of charge in our universe at the time of electrodynamics was an electron, and in any frame of reference, its radius is a finite number and assuming uniform charge ...
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2answers
57 views

Relationship between surface density and volume density

Often in an E&M problem, I'm having to "chop" an extended object into an infinite sum of smaller extended objects which I know more about to find a potential or electric field or whatever. The ...
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0answers
9 views

How does one determine the breakdown voltage of a solid-in-liquid suspension?

So I'm doing a project in which we are supposed to collect micro-scale conducting metal particles from a suspension of it in water (which is deionized). Suppose that I am charging the particles ...
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1answer
34 views

Gauss's Law :Electric field due to uniformly charged sphere

While determining the electric field due to a uniformly charged conducting or non-conducting sphere,does the sphere is considered hollow or it is considered solid? Can anyone really state , what is ...
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2answers
110 views

What is the minimum distance between two opposite point charges

In an overly simplistic model if I have a single negative charge, and a single positive charge they will be attracted. I expect they will fly together. Click. Good luck getting them apart. The ...
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2answers
77 views

Charge outside Gaussian Surface doesn't contribute to Flux?

I roughly understand the explanation for this: any electric field line that enters the surface, must leave it, since field lines can't terminate abruptly in space. My question is, what if you have a ...
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2answers
37 views

Net Electrostatic Field inside a Conductor is $\vec{0}$

I've heard an explanation for this, and my professor wasn't really able to clarify my questions, so I was hoping someone could help: Suppose there is an electrostatic field $\vec{E_{net}}\ne\vec{0}$, ...
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Would the charges on a superconductor near an another charged conductor move and produce magnetic field?

When there is a charged conducting object near an another charged conducting object the charges on these objects accumulate to the sides where the closest points between these objects are. However, ...
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1answer
14 views

Electrohydrodynamics: How will electric potential develop in a fluid when potential is applied from ends

Lets say, I have a fluid in a rectangular enclosure (2D). I apply electric potential $U=U_1$ at left boundary and $U_2$ at right boundary. In the lower and upper boundaries, the potential varies ...
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1answer
36 views

Gauss's Law :To find the Electric Field for a Non-Conducting Sphere

While determining the electric field in a Non-Conducting Sphere using Gauss's law,why the positive charges are considered inside the surface,but in determining the electric field in a conducting ...
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2answers
42 views

What is the difference between electric charge and electric flux?

What is the difference between electric charge and electric flux? According to my knowledge electric flux is nothing but electric charge enclosed by the closed surface.
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1answer
60 views

Is it necessary for EM fields to be dependent & co-exist in static conditions?

I was having a discussion today with one my colleagues in the lab about the independence and co-existence of EM fields.$$$$ My argument: In time-varying fields: EM fields are necessary dependent, ...
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52 views

Nuclear fission difference in energy calculation?

If you have a uranium atom of radius $10^{-14}m$ that undergoes fission into two fragments each with 46 protons and radius $8\times10^{-15}m$. There are two ways you can calculate the electrostatic ...
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38 views

Charge distribution over a finite plate

Let's say we have a tube(simply a cylinder with no top or bottom) with charge $q_1$, radius $r_1$ and length $l_1$ made out of insulating material. There is also a finite conducting plate with sides' ...
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1answer
29 views

Distribution of energy in an electric and magnetic field

Are the energy of the electric field and the energy of the magnetic field concentrated on their sources OR are they scattered in the environment where the fields arent zero? What is the formula that ...
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2answers
37 views

Find net force on a mass centered between four other masses

I'm not going to post the full question, I just want a general idea of how I should go about solving this type of problem. There is a square with 4 charged masses on each of the corners, in the ...
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0answers
40 views

Capacitance changes by a factor of 3 or 9?

This is an example problem with solution in a book I am reading on electrostatics. "We have two square parallel plate capacitors with length $a$ and separation $d$ with $d<<a$. If we triple ...
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Electric Field of a sphere

Is there a point in space where the electric field is half of the electric field on the surface of the sphere? I just got curious if it would be possible.
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3answers
58 views

How do we conclude that polarized dielectric in electric field reduces overall field?

If we have a dielectric inside an electric field, the dipoles in the dielectric will align in the following direction due to the torque on them by the external field. The conclusion then is that ...