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Physics 4B Lecture Notes26-1

Chapter 26 - Capacitance

Problem Set #5 - due:Ch 26 - 2, 3, 5, 7, 9, 15, 22, 26, 29, 61, 63, 64The ideas of energy storage in E-fields can be carried a step further by understanding the concept of "Capacitance."Lecture Outline1. The Definition of Capacitance2. Capacitors in Circuits3. Energy Storage in Capacitors and Electric Fields4. Dielectrics in Capacitors

1. The Definition of Capacitance

Consider a sphere with a total charge, Q, and a radius, R. From previousproblems we know that the potential at the surface is, V

=

k QR. Putting morecharge on the sphere stores more energy, but the ratio of energy or potential tocharge depends only on R, not on Q or V. That is,QV

=

Rk . It's true for allcharged objects that the ratio of potential to voltage depends only on the shape,so this ratio is defined as the capacitance. C

≡

QVThe Defintion of CapacitanceThe units of capacitance are1 Coulomb1 Volt

≡

1 Farad

≡

1 F.

Example 1: Calculate the capacitance of two equal but oppositely charged plates of area, A, and separation, d. Neglect any edge effects.

The potential difference between the plates is,

∆

V

= −

r

E

•

d

r

s

∫

.The field between the plates is just the sum of the fields due to theindividual plates (see Ch 23 - example 9),

r

E

=

r

E

+

+

r

E

−

=σ

2

ε

o

ˆk

+σ

2

ε

o

ˆk

=σε

o

ˆk

=

q

ε

o

Aˆk .Using d

r

s

=

dzˆk , the voltage on the capacitor can be written as,

∆

V

= −

q

ε

o

Aˆk

•

dzˆk

= −

∫

q

ε

o

Adz

= −

∫

q

ε

o

A

∆

z

⇒

V

=

qd

ε

o

A.Applying the definition of capacitance,C

≡

QV

=

qqd

ε

o

A

⇒

C

= ε

o

Ad. Note that the capacitance only depends on the shape.RQ+qd-qz+E-E

Physics 4B Lecture Notes26-2 Example 2: Find the capacitance of two concentric cylindrical conductors of radii a and b with alength,

l

. Show that the result is consistent with example 1.

Assume the cylinders have equal and opposite charges,Q. Then the potential difference between them is,

∆

V

= −

r

E

•

d

r

s

∫

where

r

E

=

2k

λ

rˆr

=

2kQr

l

ˆr from example 7 of chapter 24.Using d

r

s

=

drˆr , the voltage on the capacitor can bewritten as,

∆

V

= −

2kQr

l

ˆr

•

drˆr

= −

∫

2kQ

l

1rdr

ab

∫

= −

2kQ

l

lnba

⇒

V

=

2kQ

l

lnba.Using the definition of capacitance, C

≡

QV

=

Q2kQ

l

lnba

⇒

C

=

l

2k ln

ba

.Again the result depends only on geometry.When a and b get very large the concentric cylinders look like parallelplates. The distance between the plates is d = b - a. In terms of a andd,ba

=

a

+

da

=

1

+

da.Now the capacitance can be written, C

=

l

2k ln1

+

da

( )

.In the limit a

→ ∞

and d is small, the Taylor expansion of thelogarithm can be used, ln1

+δ

( )

≈ δ

1

−

δ

2

( )

⇒

ln1

+

da

( )

≈

da

1

−

d2a

( )

≈

da

.In this limit, C

=

l

2k

da

=

4

πε

o

l

a2d

= ε

o

2

π

a

l

d

= ε

o

Adas expected.

2. Capacitors in Circuits

Bring some capacitors

Capacitors in Series:By the Law of Conservation of Energy the sum of the voltages onthe capacitors must equal the applied voltage.

V

=

V

1

+

V

2

+

L

+

V

N

Using the definition of capacitance,

QC

s

=

Q

1

C

1

+

Q

2

C

2

+

L

+

Q

N

C

N

The Law of Conservation of Charge requires all the charges to be equal, Q

=

Q

1

=

Q

2

=

L

=

Q

N

.

QC

s

=

QC

1

+

QC

2

+

L

+

QC

N

⇒

1C

s

=

1C

1

+

1C

2

+

L

+

1C

N

⇒

1C

s

=

1C

i

∑

-Q+Q

ab

l

abdVC

12

C

N

C

Physics 4B Lecture Notes26-3

1C

s

=

1C

i

∑

The Addition of Capacitors in Series Capacitors in Parallel:By the Law of Conservation of Charge the sum of the charges onthe capacitors must equal the supplied charge.

Q

=

Q

1

+

Q

2

+

L

+

Q

N

Using the definition of capacitance,

C

p

V

=

C

1

V

1

+

C

2

V

2

+

L

+

C

N

V

N

The Law of Conservation of Energy requires all the voltages to be equal, V

=

V

1

=

V

2

=

L

=

V

N

.

C

p

V

=

C

1

V

+

C

2

V

+

L

+

C

N

V

⇒

C

p

=

C

1

+

C

2

+

L

+

C

N

⇒

C

p

=

C

i

∑

The Addition of Capacitors in ParallelC

p

=

C

i

∑

Example 3: Find (a)the equivalent capacitance, (b)the charge on each capacitor and (c)the potentialdifference for each capacitor in the circuit shown. Given V=1.50V, C

1

=4.00µF, C

2

=8.00µF, and C

3

=6.00µF.

(a)C

1

and C

2

are in parallel so C

p

=

C

1

+

C

2

=

12.0

µ

F.Now we can imagine C

p

in series with C

3

giving a total capacitance of 1C

s

=

1C

p

+

1C

3

⇒

C

=

C

p

C

3

C

p

+

C

3

=

4.00

µ

F(b)&(c)Using the definition of capacitance we can find the total chargeQ

=

CV

=

(4

µ

F)(1.5V)

=

6.00

µ

C.This must equal the charge on C

3

by the Law of Conservation of Charge, Q

3

=6.00µC.Now the voltage on C

3

must be C

≡

QV

⇒

V

3

=

Q

3

C

3

=

6

µ

C6

µ

F

=

1V. According to the Law of Conservation of Energy that leaves 0.5V on C

1

and C

2

. Now the charge on C

1

is,Q

1

=

C

1

V

1

=

(4

µ

F)(0.5V)

=

2.00

µ

Cand the charge on C

2

is,Q

2

=

C

2

V

2

=

(8

µ

F)(0.5V)

=

4.00

µ

C. Note that Q

3

=

Q

1

+

Q

2

.In summary,Q(µC)C(µF)V(V)2.004.000.5004.008.000.5006.006.001.00VC

12

C

N

CVC

12

C

3

C

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