# How to charge an object with electricity

I know this is a rather basic question, but how do you charge an object? Not a battery, an object. I'm guessing it involves static electricity, but I'm not sure. Some resources I've been reading talk about charging two objects with opposing voltages, and I am trying to figure out how you do it. I think you do it with DC current, but past that, I'm not sure.

Here is the paper I am talking about: http://www.avonhistory.org/school/gravitor.htm

• you can actually buy Van de Graaff generator or Wimshurst machine (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wimshurst_machine) used for school demonstrations. But no, you won't be able to make antigravity, though you can build a toy ionocraft Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 5:50

To charge an object, you first need to make sure that it is insulated, so the charge cannot leak away. That is easy if you are charging an insulator, but if you want to charge a metal object you need to mount it on an insulator as metals conduct electricity.

Then you can charge the object. To do this you need to add or remove electrons to/from the objet. You can easily do this by rubbing it with a dielectric material. See for example the Van de Graaff generator. You always create equal and opposite charges: if your metal becomes positive, the rubbing material will be negative. The positive object has electrons removed, the negative one has them added.

I don't know what you think of the article you linked, but controlling gravity is something that cannot be done with electricity - if it is possible at all, and there are good reasons for thinking it's not.

• Is it possible to do this with a DC motor? Or is that just plain out of the question? Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 2:45
• I'm not sure what you mean by "doing it with a DC motor". You can use the motor to drive the belt in a Van de Graaff generator. Commented Aug 13, 2012 at 0:09
• Ok, I don't know much about motors, so please forgive me, but if I have a generator that generates millions of volts, can I use it to charge the plates in the same way? Commented Aug 13, 2012 at 23:01
• Yes you can, the Van de Graaff generator is one such device. Commented Aug 14, 2012 at 5:02

Are these not examples of static electricity charging?

1. Combing dry hair with comb, the comb gets charged.
2. A sweater worn for sometime...