# What does 0 electric potential difference mean?

by kyub7
Tags: difference, electric, potential
 P: 1 This isn't a homework question, but while working on some questions in Physics AP C, i've come across several questions involving 0 PD (potential difference). My question is simple; what does 0 PD mean? so far i know that 0 potential difference of any kind is arbitrary, since it represents the amount of energy required to displace it from point a to b. Therefore i am aware that 0 does not really mean: 'no potential energy at that point'. (new to forum; i hope there's an image above this line^^) the image above is a simulation of 1 negative charge, and 3 positive charge with some distance between them. the white area supposedly shows 0 PD, but what is so special about it? Does a charge or an object behave differently in those areas?
 Sci Advisor HW Helper PF Gold P: 12,016 0 potential value is arbitrary; 0 potential difference is not. 0 potential difference between two locations means that the potential values AT each point are the same. As to your specific question: What would be the effective force on a charged particle placed within the white region?
 PF Gold P: 479 As arildno stated, you're not being consistent with use of your termonology. $U_{q}="Electric Potential"$ $V= "Potential Difference" = U_{q_{f}}-U_{q_{o}}$ The second is what you measure with your ammeter in class.
 PF Gold P: 479 What does 0 electric potential difference mean? To actually answer your question, 0 electric potential is like setting a 0 for gravitational potential energy, put it where it's most convenient (probably ground in your circuit) 0 Potential difference means that the 2 points your measuring between are at the same electric potential.

 Related Discussions Classical Physics 3 General Physics 2 Introductory Physics Homework 1 Introductory Physics Homework 1 Introductory Physics Homework 2