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AxiomOfChoice
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Can someone tell me how to express a line of charge of charge per unit length [tex]\lambda[/tex] as a delta function volume charge density in cylindrical coordinates?
AxiomOfChoice said:Ok, here's my guess:
[tex]
\rho(\vec{r}') = \frac{1}{a}\lambda \delta(r' - a) \delta (\phi' - \phi_0).
[/tex]
Assuming that the line of charge is infinite, parallel to the [itex]z[/itex]-axis, a distance [itex]a[/itex] from the origin, and at an angle [itex]\phi = \phi_0[/tex] w.r.t. the [itex]x[/itex]-axis. Sound good?
A line of charge as a delta function is a theoretical concept used in physics to represent an infinitely thin, one-dimensional line of charge with a very high charge density. It is often used as a simplified model for calculating the electric field and potential of a charged object.
A regular line of charge has a finite thickness and a non-uniform charge distribution, while a line of charge as a delta function has zero thickness and a uniform charge distribution. This makes calculations with a delta function line of charge much simpler, but it is not a physically realistic representation of a real line of charge.
No, a line of charge as a delta function is a theoretical concept and cannot exist in the real world. It is used as a simplified model for mathematical calculations, but it does not accurately represent any physical object.
The electric field of a line of charge as a delta function can be calculated using Coulomb's Law, which states that the electric field at a point is equal to the charge at that point divided by the square of the distance from the point to the charge. In the case of a delta function line of charge, the charge is considered to be concentrated at a single point with zero distance, resulting in an infinite electric field.
A line of charge as a delta function may be used in theoretical calculations for objects such as a charged wire or an infinitely long charged rod. It can also be used to model the electric fields and potentials of point charges or charged particles moving along a straight path.