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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Boundary conditions of this problem

We have A point charge, a homogeneously charged insulator with total charge $Q''$ which is a ball with radius $R$, a conducting metal ball with charge $Q'$, radius $R$ and a grounded metal (no ...
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74 views

Find the points where potential is null

Let's say we have two charges called $q_1$ and $q_2$, respectively $20 \, C$ and $-40\,C$, at a distance $d=1\,m$ We want to find all the points where electric potential is null. I solved the ...
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87 views

A little question about Gauss' Law

So I've just learned Gauss' Law a few days ago. I also worked out some applications of Gauss' Law. But I have a little confusion. In a couple of books that I referred, I found a statement that I don't ...
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2answers
118 views

What is the first non-vanishing multipole moment of this configuration?

Imagine that you have a triangle where each side has the length $a$ and a charge $q$ sitting at every vertex. Additionally, we have a charge $-3q$ sitting in the center of the triangle. What is the ...
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2answers
43 views

Coulomb & Electric Fields (Highschool Physics)

If an electric field is said to have a strength of $10^{-15} N/C$, what does this mean? N is Newtons, C is coulomb - I'm not sure how they link? So then I am asked to calculate the force on the ...
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58 views

Electric field energy

Is it true that $\int_V \rho \phi $ is the equation for the energy of a charge distribution in an external potential and $\frac{1}{2} \int_V \rho \phi$ is the equation for the energy of a charge ...
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4answers
209 views

Electric Field due to a disk of charge. (Problem in derivation)

This might be a really silly question, but I don't understand it. In finding the electric field due to a thin disk of charge, we use the known result of the field due to a ring of charge and then ...
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2answers
121 views

Gauss’s Law inside the hollow of charged spherical shell

Use Gauss’s Law to prove that the electric field anywhere inside the hollow of a charged spherical shell must be zero. My attempt: $$\int \mathbf{E}\cdot \mathbf{dA} = \frac{q_{net}}{e}$$ $$\int E ...
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1answer
104 views

How to find the electric field due to a point charge in 3 dimensions?

A point charge with charge $+q$ is situated at $(x,y,z)$. How do I find the electric field at $(p,q,r)$? $E=k\frac{q}{r^2}$, right? So why isn't the electric field, ...
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3answers
2k views

Is the Earth negatively or positively charged?

The Earth carries a negative electric charge of roughly 500 thousand Coulombs. Does that mean the Earth is negatively charged?
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1answer
117 views

Solving non-linear ODE for divalent solution at a 1-D surface boudary

I am trying to solve the following equation for a positively charged plane with charge density $\sigma$ at $z = 0$. $$ \phi''(z)=-\frac{e}{\epsilon \epsilon_0} \big(z_+n_{+} e^{-\beta z_+ ...
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Green function two solutions questions

I am having some trouble with Green functions in electrostatics What is the meaning of this trick: Given $$\vec{\nabla}^2 V(\vec{r}) = \frac{-1}{\varepsilon_0}\rho(\vec{r}) = ...
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50 views

Earnshaw's theorem for extended conducting bodies

I read on Wiki that Earnshaw's theorem has been proven for extended conducting bodies. If we consider the case of a positive charge at the centre of a symmetric metal cavity- the positive charge and ...
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3answers
63 views

Why don't the leaves of an electrometer repel each other in water?

A normal electrometer filled with air will repel like it should do for electrostatic demonstration, but what if it is filled with water instead or even oil, what will happen? My guess is that the ...
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2answers
27 views

Stopping an isolated metal ion

If we obtain something like a single isolated hydrogen atom I.e. $H^+$ is it possible by keeping it in a system of charged rings to contain and stop it at the centre of the system? Any positively ...
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0answers
36 views

Electric field due to charge in one direction

I am supposed to calculate the electric field due to the charge density $\rho(x) = Ax e^{-\lambda |x|},$ where the density is supposed to be homogenous in $y,z$ direction. The problem is, that the ...
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5answers
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Why a glass rod when rubbed with silk cloth aquire positive charge and not negative charge?

I have read many times in the topic of induction that a glass rod when rubbed against a silk cloth acquires a positive charge. Why does it acquire positive charge only, why not negative charge? It ...
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electrostatics numerical [closed]

Two insulated copper spheres have their centers separated by a distance of 50cm. If charge on each sphere is 6.5×10⁷C, what is the mutual force of repulsion when the spheres are placed in water? The ...
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2answers
124 views

When to use which representation for an electric field

In class we covered three types of possibilities to evaluate the electric field for static problems. Unfortunately, most physics textbooks cover these ways without addressing the question of ...
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1answer
73 views

Charge Distribution On Hollow Sphere

Say we have a hollow conducting sphere (with some finite thickness). If this object has an excess charge amounting to +Q coulomb, and there is no extra electric field in the surroundings (due to ...
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5answers
374 views

How would charge distribute if electrons were balls?

In a conductor, any excess charge will distribute itself evenly over the surface of the conductor. Because of quantum mechanics, this is possible with small charges (i.e. 1e). But if electrons were ...
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0answers
49 views

Electric Potential Change

Imagine we have a conductor in the shape of a sphere with charge $Q$ on it. The conductor is not grounded. There is an associated potential $V=\frac{Q}{4\pi\epsilon_0 R}$ at and in the sphere, where ...
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Why is electric potential scalar?

I can't conceptually visualize why it would be so. Say you have two point charges of equal charge and a point right in the middle of them. The potential of that charge, mathematically, is proportional ...
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2answers
168 views

Electric potential is zero but non zero electric field?

What is the physical significance of such a point where electric field is non-zero but electric potential is zero? I mean, how can we understand this concept without mathematics?
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3answers
36 views

Can the potential difference produced in Van De Graff generator used to generate electric current?

If this machine can build up high voltages of order of millions of volts, can we use this volt the generate current of electrons? The building up of potential difference can result in electric field. ...
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71 views

Electric field and magnetic field question here?

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? Can you base your answer ...
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60 views

1 charge at the center and many uniformly distributed on the surface of a perfect ideal conducting solid sphere

Suppose there is a perfect ideal conducting solid sphere. Suppose somehow a charge of $+Q$ is kept exactly at the center of the sphere and its surface is also given a $+Q$ charge uniformly distributed ...
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115 views

Weird consequence of Gauss's law

According to Gauss's Law, the electric field at a surface is the function of only the charge enclosed inside it. But that doesn't make sense. I mean, if I put the surface in an electric field, won't ...
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1answer
49 views

Classical static equilibrium in atomic physics

Consider a collection of $n+1$ mass weighted points in $\mathbb{R}^3$. Suppose we have one mass located at the point (0,0,0) with mass $m\in\mathbb{N}$ and further suppose we have $n$ masses arranged ...
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2answers
81 views

Does the induced charge on a conductor stay at the surface?

My textbook says that when a conductor is placed in an electric field, the electrons in it realign so that the net electric field inside the conductor is zero. There isn't a proof for this. It merely ...
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105 views

How to solve the Laplace equation in ellipsoidal coordinates?

It seems that popular textbooks on electrodynamics do not discuss how to solve the Laplace equation in ellipsoidal coordinates. I could not find any reference, but there must be references about this. ...
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4answers
260 views

Charge distribution on plates

$A,B,C$ are $3$ identical metallic plates. Initially, charges $Q$, $4Q$ and $2Q$ were given to $A$,$B$ and $C$ respectively. Find final charge distributions when $B$ was earthed and $A$ and $C$ were ...
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55 views

Law of Gauss. Electrostatics

I have seen on the internet that many times people assert that inside a cylindric condenser the electrostatic field is null due to the fact that the Gauss flux inside is null. But I wanted to make ...
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23 views

quantum mechanics. Electromagnetics

In electromagnetics the intensity of a wave is calculated taking the squared of its amplitude. What is the reason why in quantum waves this cannot be applied to calculate it?
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45 views

Isn't $\varepsilon_0\int_{\text{all space}}\vec{E}_1\cdot\vec{E}_2 \,{\rm d}v$ just the potential energy?

I have two metallic spheres each with a charge of $q_1$ and $q_2$ respectively. What is the value of $$\varepsilon_0\int_{\text{all space}} \vec{E}_1\cdot\vec{E}_2 \,{\rm d}v$$ where $\vec{E}_1$ and ...
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2answers
125 views

Gauss' law question

It's actually a teaching conflict at my school. They said that $$\text{Flux}=\frac{q}{\varepsilon_0}.$$ Say for a point charge at the centre of the sphere and let's say we not put water into the ...
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0answers
72 views

Charge distribution inside a parallel plate capacitor [closed]

I'm having difficulty deriving a known expression for the magnitude of the Electric Field within a parallel plate capacitor with applied potential difference $V$ and an immobile charge distribution ...
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1answer
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Does proton make neutron charged by the process of induction/friction/conduction?

If two bodies undergo friction, the one of the bodies which has electrons less tightly bound than the other loses them. Here the protons do also have charged quarks which they could exchange with ...
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23 views

Breakdown voltage

Capacitor (Geiger counter) is made out of wire with radius $R_1 = 5 mm$ and coaxial tube with radius $R_2 = 5 cm$. What is the maximum voltage on the capacitor, given the breakdown voltage of air ...
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662 views

Electric Field inside a regular polygon with corner charges

If we have equal charges located at the corners of a regular polygon, then the electric field at its center is zero. Are there other points inside a polygon where the field vanishes? The simplest ...
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2answers
87 views

Electric field in two sphere system

Hi guys I'm really confused by this electric field question. Basically for the given setup shown, draw a graph of how electric field varies with distance from the center, given that radius of ...
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3answers
275 views

Charged particle between two parallel likely charged plates, is it affected by the plates?

Imagine two parallel conductive plates. Charge up both to have the same amount of positive charge. Then put positive test particle between the two. The Coulomb's law is an inverse square law, so one ...
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3answers
60 views

Energy expended in moving point charge in E field. Having trouble understanding an excerpt from E&M textbook

To move charge from one point to another in an electric field, the force which we must apply is equal and opposite to the force due to the field. (Quoted from Engineering Electromagnetics by ...
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2answers
60 views

Could Charles-Augustin de Coulomb measure the charge in Coulombs?

Did Charles-Augustin de Coulomb know: Coulomb's constant Coulomb (as a unit) if not then what was the first time it was measured?
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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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2answers
183 views

Why isn't there a potential difference across a disconnected diode?

I know this question sounds silly, as if there was a potential difference a current would be created when the terminals are connected together and this would mean energy has come from somewhere. The ...
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1answer
47 views

Protons (as opposed to neutrons) to mediate nuclear fission?

I am just wondering why are protons (as opposed to neutrons) not used to mediate nuclear fission? Is it because it is charged, so we will have to input more unnecessary energy to overcome the Coulomb ...
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98 views

Calculating the electrostatic energy per unit length of a cylindrical shell surrounded by a coaxial cable

Suppose an infinitely long cylindrical shell of radius $a$ carries a surface charge density $\sigma_0$ and is surrounded by a coaxial cable of inner radius $b$ and outer radius $c$ with uniform charge ...
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2answers
209 views

2D Gauss law vs residue theorem

I used to have a vague feeling that the residue theorem is a close analogy to 2D electrostatics in which the residues themselves play a role of point charges. However, the equations don't seem to add ...
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Why does Gauss's law work for a charge off center in a spherical surface?

CASE 1: Consider an enclosed spherical surface with a charge $q$ at its centre. From Gauss' law we can say that the flux through this sphere is $q/\epsilon_0$. CASE 2: The charge is inside but off ...