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I am not able to understand why the values of measured theoretically and experimentally would be different and even if they differ how does it affect if they are like charges or unlike.

  • $\begingroup$ The calculation is done assuming the charges to be concentrated at a single point at the center of the spheres. Is this the only possibility? If there are other possibilities, how could you decide which is the correct one? $\endgroup$ – Themis Sep 14 '19 at 15:01
  • $\begingroup$ I don't think we have to consider other possibilities otherwise the question would then be invalid $\endgroup$ – Abhishek Mehta Sep 14 '19 at 15:03
  • $\begingroup$ On the contrary: if the measured and calculated values do not agree, this must be because the calculation was based on incorrect assumptions. $\endgroup$ – Themis Sep 14 '19 at 17:07

If two charged spheres are conductors, like charges will repel each other and move to the far surfaces of the spheres. With a larger separation distance, the measured force will be less than the point charge calculation. The effect will be opposite for unlike charges. The charges on non-conducting spheres will stay where they are placed, and can in theory be placed to give any desired result. I do not like any of the given answers. Answer b should say “may” instead of “must”.

  • $\begingroup$ Actually the answer is option d $\endgroup$ – Abhishek Mehta Sep 15 '19 at 1:22

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