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Chapter 23

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

A review on Coulombs Law Define Electric Field Define Electric Field Line Examples on How to Calculate for the Electric Field Charge Particles Experience Force in an Electric Field

Coulombs Law, Review

The formula:

q1 q2 Fe ke r2

or

q1q2 12 F12 ke 2 r r

The units (SI):

Charge: coulomb (C) Distance: meter Force: Newton


Ke, the Coulomb constant:

The constants:

ke = 8.9876 x 109 N.m2/C2 = 1/(4 o)

o the permittivity of free space: o = 8.8542 x 10-12 C2 / N.m2

Electric Field: the definition


The electric force acts through empty space, i.e., the effect is produced even with no physical contact between objects. An electric field helps visualize this: the field is a set of vectors, one vector associated with each point in space. It is produced in the region of space around a charge (called the source charge). The strength and direction of that electric field at a point in space is measured by the electric force vector experienced by another charge (often called the test charge) at that point. Mathematically:

F E qo

The electric field, E , is a vector. The test charge, qo, is usually a very small charge compared with the source charge, so that its existence does not distort the electrical field generated by the source charge. Unit: Newton/Coulomb or N/C.

Electric Field Lines, a way to illustrate the field


Electric field is introduced to explain the fact the electric forces act through space. We use a set of specially defined lines to illustrate the field. Now lets define these electric field lines:

Field lines of one point positive source charge in space

They start from positive charge, end at negative charge. Their density in space (number of lines in unit volume) indicates the field strength. The tangent of an electric field line, at a given point, points in the direction of the field at that point. Hence no lines can cross (why?).

Field lines of one point negative source charge in space

More cases on how to draw electric field lines


Electric dipole: the charges are equal and opposite. The charges are equal and positive. Can you draw for the case charges are equal but negative? A slightly more general case: the charges are not equal, not same sign.

An even more general case: Electric Field Lines when the source charge is not seen

Electric field might not come from static (stationary) single source charges. We can understand electric field lines even when the exact source is unknown. In the case in the right side figure: The density of lines through surface A is greater than that through surface B. So the magnitude of the electric field is greater on surface A than on B The electric field strength (number of lines) times the surface area (A or B) is called the electric flux.

How would you define the flux of water coming out of a garden hose?

How to calculate the electric field generated by a point source charge q

From the definition: F E qo Place the test charge q0 at point P. The force on q0 is given by Coulombs law:

qqo Fe ke 2 r r

Then, the electric field will be

Fe q E ke 2 r qo r

The electric field only depends on the source charge, not the test charge.

How to calculate electric field generated by many charges? Superposition with electric field from each charge.
When the charges are still point charges: from Example (23.5, page 653):

Ei ke

qi r 2 i ri

to

qi i E Ei ke 2 r i i ri

How to calculate electric field generated by many charges? Superposition with electric field from each charge.
When the charges are distributed over volume V: from

dE ke

dq r 2 r

to

E ke
V

dq r 2 r

Examples on how to calculate electric field from a continuous charge distribution


Example 23.6 (page 656)

Examples on how to calculate electric field from a continuous charge distribution


Example 23.7 (page 657)

Examples on how to calculate electric field from a continuous charge distribution


Example 23.8 (page 658)

Charge Particles Experience Force in an Electric Field

From the definition of electric field:


E F q

We know that charge particles experience force in an electric field:

Fe qE

This formula, although a simple transformation from the definition, is a lot more useful.

Two examples
Example 23.9 (page 662) Example 23.10 (page 663)