Electrostatics is concerned with the electrical fields and scalar potentials of stationary electrical charges and charge distributions. Use this for questions about electromagnetic situations in which currents and magnetic fields are absent, otherwise use [tag:electromagnetism] and/or ...

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Uniform Electric Field

I was going through the first chapter in Resnick Halliday related to electromagnetism and then I came across something called a uniform electric field. It was written that "If E is uniform (that is, ...
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152 views

Electrostatics and tv screens

My physics textbook states an activity- "Cut out thin strips of paper and lightly iron them. Take them near a TV screen or computer monitor. The strips get attracted to the screen and may cling to the ...
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2answers
136 views

Electric potential energy and signs

I know that electric potential is negative near a negative charge and positive near a positive charge. But does this mean a small positive 'test' charge has a negative electric potential energy near a ...
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1answer
105 views

Why can we ignore self energy?

I have been doing some practice questions in a text book [Electricity and Magnetism by Purcell and Morin]. So I know that the energy the potential energy of a system is the total work required to ...
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1answer
266 views

Find out gradient of electric potential at ${\bf r}$ created by eletric dipole of moment ${\bf p}$ [closed]

Suposing an electric dipole of moment ${\bf p}$ located at the origin which creates an electric potential at ${\bf r}$ given by ...
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6answers
10k views

Workdone in an equipotential surface is zero?

An equipotential surface is one in which all the points are at the same electric potential. If a charge is to be moved between any two points (say from point A to point B) on an equipotential surface, ...
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142 views

The Electric Quadrupole

I've read the following sentence: "Every electric circuit with two pairs of accessible terminals is called a quadrupole." I was wondering why does it happen that the multipole expansion gives us a ...
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1answer
160 views

Electric Dipole force exerted by a charged wire on a dipole

Why is force exerted by a charged wire on a dipole given as $F = P×(dE(r))/(dr)$ where P is the dipole moment? Please explain in simple words and avoid using too much technical derivations.I am a ...
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2answers
242 views

Does the electric force on a charged particle in a uniform electric field increase?

If I have a proton in a uniform field between two parallel oppositely charged plates and the proton accelerates, the electric force acting on it stays constant seeing it is a uniform field and as a ...
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31 views

How can a cable pass signal

I am currently study electrostatics. And I don't get how can electrons pass signals in a cable, can somebody explain this to me specifically?(I am only twelve years old) Thank you very much!
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Galerkin-type weak formulation for electrokinetics

I am currently working on finite element simulations about electrokinetics. My solver (getdp) accepts directly galerkin-type weak formulation of equations. I am thus trying to write my equations in ...
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0answers
52 views

Neumann Green's function inside semi-infinite conductor [closed]

Consider a semi-infinite conductor with uniform conductivity $s$ occupying the space $z>0$. What is the Green's function with Dirichlet and Neumann boundary conditions inside the region $z>0$? ...
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3answers
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Can we have negative Electrostatic potential

What does it mean to have a negative electric potential? not talking about potential difference or voltage.
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How does insulating footwear prevent an electric shock?

The reason I have always heard to explain the reduction of electric shock when we wear insulating footwear goes as follows: When electricity passes from our body to the ground, an electric circuit ...
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How to determine whether a statically charged object is positively or negatively charged?

for example, I rub a ballon on carpet. What is an experiment I can do to tell which object is net positive charged and which is negative?
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5answers
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Laplacian of $1/r^2$ (context: electromagnetism and poisson equation)

We know that a point charge $q$ located at the origin $r=0$ produces a potential $\sim \frac{q}{r}$, and this is consistent with the fact that the Laplacian of $\frac{q}{r}$ is ...
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1answer
262 views

Closed surface intuition [closed]

In topology, closed surface is simply defined to be the surface that has no boundary as opposed to open surfaces. This is the layman's definition of closed surface. Example is notably a sphere. ...
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3answers
227 views

Induced charge in a mobius strip

I know that when a positive charge is placed at the center of a circular ring, the "inside" of the ring will have a negative induced charge and the "outside" will have a positive induced charge. ...
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2answers
284 views

How does electromotive force (emf) influence electrostatic force in a circuit?

I am learning about emf and I am using university physics of Hugh D. Young which states that when the emf source is not part of a circuit the non-electrostatic force of the source moves charge form ...
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1answer
227 views

Charge distribution on a doughnut shaped conductor

In a spherical solid conductor the charge is always on the outer surface. Even if the sphere has a cavity, the surface of the inner cavity can not carry a charge due to Gauss's Law. What would be ...
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882 views

What is the meaning of permittivity of free space?

We all know about the value of permittivity of free space but is this actually enough of for our knowledge? We should be taught that what actually does permittivity of free space means.
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2answers
497 views

Effect of charges near a parallel plate capacitor

If I charge a parallel plate capacitor and I insert a charged body near one of the plates will there be any interactions like attraction or repulsion? What if I disconnect the battery?
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2answers
558 views

Flux through plane surface in hemisphere [closed]

Suppose a charge is placed at the centre of a hemispherical surface of radius $R$ then what would be the electric flux passing through the planar surface opposite to the charge in the hemisphere? I ...
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2answers
293 views

Continuity of Potential of an electric field

Consider a point charge $q$ at $(0,0,0)$, the potential at $\bf{r}$ is given by $V(\bf{r})$ $= \frac{q}{4\pi\epsilon_0r}$. If you consider a path through $(0,0,0)$, you encounter a discontinuity in ...
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1answer
101 views

Image charges and capacitors?

Consider these two situations: A (infinite) parallel plate capacitor in which one plate is held at a potential $V$ and the other is grounded. A point charge near an infinite plane and grounded ...
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1answer
36 views

Explanation for electrostatic energy expression

My question is about the electrostatic energy $We$ expression for $n$ point charges. I just can't figure out where the factor "$\frac{1}{2}$" came from: $We=\frac{1}{2} \sum_{i=1}^{n} q_iV_i$
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Force between charges when there's a slab of dielectric between them [duplicate]

Consider the following arrangement - Blue and red are two opposite charges +q and -q separated by a distance R. A dielecric slab is placed between them. The thickness of the slab is t. What will ...
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304 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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324 views

Gauss Law for a Modified Coulomb's Law

A problem out of a certain popular book on electricity and magnetism dealt with the resulting electrostatic theory if Coulomb's law was replaced with the following equation: $$ \mathbf{F} = ...
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1answer
86 views

Definition of charges

We say that a body is negatively charged when it has excess electrons otherwise say positively or uncharged. We also say that electrons are negatively charged. By the above statement, it has more ...
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4answers
10k views

Why are there dust particles on TV screens?

My professor gave us the following reason: The screen is positively charged. When dust particles fly near it, the positive charges in the screen induce a charge in the dust particle, pulling the ...
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1answer
327 views

Energy Loss during Sharing of Charge between two Capacitors

It is fairly easy to show that there is always a loss energy when two capacitors share their charge to attain the same common potential, but is it with the same ease that one can explain why it ...
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1answer
67 views

Electric field of a full disk - when $R \to 0$ - it's not equal to coulomb law

An MIT document states that the electric field of a full disk, when $R \to 0$, is similar to Coulomb's law $$\mathbf E_{disk}=2\pi ...
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2answers
409 views

Why is there lightning where there are no clouds?

Recently my family and I went onto the balcony to observed the stars in the night sky. We started to see flashes in the sky and we realized that it was lightning (non fork lightning). I looked around ...
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1answer
179 views

Question on boundary condition for Maxwell's Equations and Coulomb's law

When deriving Coulomb's law using the differential forms of Maxwell's equation, the boundary condition that $\phi = 0 $ at infinity is also used. From $\nabla × E = 0, E = \nabla \phi$ for some ...
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487 views

Information content of the electrostatic Maxwell equations vs Coulomb's Law vs Poisson's Equation

In electrostatics, we have Maxwell's equations: $\nabla \cdot E = \rho$ $\nabla \times E = 0$ These four equations (the second line standing for three equations) can also be written in terms of the ...
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107 views

Poisson equation in non-homogenous media

If the dielectric constant be different in x, y, and z directions, how the Poisson equation would change. Is it right to say: $$ \epsilon_{xx} d^2V/dx^2 + \epsilon_{yy} d^2V/dy^2 + \epsilon_{zz} ...
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1answer
443 views

How do electrostatic air filters really work?

Supposedly electronic air filters work by ionizing dust (small airborne particles) and then attracting them to filter plates of the opposite charge. What I don't understand is why the filter plates ...
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4answers
112 views

Approximations of the kind $x \ll y$ [closed]

I have an expression for a force due to charged particle given as $$F=\frac{kQq}{2L}\left(\frac{1}{\sqrt{R^2+(H+L)^2}}-\frac{1}{\sqrt{R^2+(H-L)^2}}\right) \tag{1}$$ where $R$, $L$ and $H$ are distance ...
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2answers
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Electric field of infinite slab

When reading a book about basic electrodynamics (in a section about electrostatics), I came upon the following problem: An infinite plane slab, of thickness $2d$, carries a uniform volume charge ...
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0answers
71 views

What would be the charge distribution in a Klein bottle?

We know that for any conductor the charge lies on the outer surface at electrostatic equilibrium. What would happen if a Klein bottle is made up of a conductor and a charge is placed on it?
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4answers
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Why do grapes in a microwave oven produce plasma?

Some of you may know this experience (Grape + Microwave oven = Plasma video link): take a grape that you almost split in two parts, letting just a tiny piece of skin making a link between each ...
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1answer
621 views

Dielectric slab inserted into a constant voltage capacitor

I was told that a dielectric slab inserted into a capacitor connected to a battery (constant voltage) will be repelled, because the energy stored in the capacitor increases when the dielectric is ...
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0answers
79 views

Elementary electromagnetism problem - Electric field generated by points that form an equilateral triangle

I am a newbie at physics and i just started learning electromagnetism at the university. Some help would be very welcome on the following questions (my question and/or result and/or partial work will ...
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1answer
326 views

What happens to the energy of a capacitor after a dielectric is inserted?

Consider a parallel plate capacitor having capacitance $ C$ and charge $Q$. then the energy of the capacitor will be $\frac{Q^2}{2C}$. Now if a dielectric is inserted, then $C $ increases and thus the ...
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2answers
1k views

Curl of Electrostatic Field

In Griffith's EM text he calculates the curl for the E field of a point charge (at the origin). He shows that the line integral of an arbitrary closed loop is zero: $$ \oint E\cdot dl = 0 $$ and ...
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2answers
464 views

Wouldn't $D = \epsilon E$ mean that a higher permittivity constant gives a higher electric flux? (And what exactly is the displacement field?)

A quote from the Wikipedia page for Permittivity: More electric flux exists in a medium with a low permittivity (per unit charge) because of polarization effects. This makes sense to me. My ...
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3answers
34k views

Why is Energy = Voltage x Charge, and how to prove that?

As you know the equation $\mathbf{E=V\times Q}$. Where: $\mathbf E$ is the energy measured in joules, $\mathbf V$ is potential difference (Voltage), $\mathbf Q$ is the charge. So my qustion is: ...
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1answer
86 views

How two electric charges know about each other? [duplicate]

Suppose we have two electric charges $q_1$ and $q_2$ a distance $r$ apart in euclidean three-space. Coulomb's force law states that there's a force $$\mathbf{F}_{12} = \dfrac{1}{4\pi\epsilon_0} ...
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57 views

Potential energies of charges and spring

I wonder if someone could sanity check this very simple calculation. Consider a pair of charges $+q$ at rest separated by a spring of length $d$ and stiffness $k$. The spring provides the force that ...