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Andrew Mason
Oct6-08, 04:59 AM
Sci Advisor
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Quote Quote by granpa View Post
nobody has addressed my very simple question. what about a hypothetical massless charged particle? it has self inductance so it would accelerate under the influence of an external field in exactly the same way that a massive particle would. the force due to self inductance exactly balancing the force due to the external field. net force is zero yet it still accelerates.
There is, of course, no such thing as a massless charged particle. A massless particle travels at the speed of light relative to all inertial frames, so it cannot accelerate.

A particle with charge q in an electric field [itex]\vec E[/itex] experiences a force [itex]\vec F[/itex] = q[itex]\vec E[/itex]. The only thing that affects its acceleration is its mass. [itex]\vec F[/itex] = q[itex]\vec E[/itex] = ma. There is no other force.