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A little philosophical electric discussion

  1. Sep 12, 2011 #1
    A little philosophical electric discussion....

    So, am I understanding this correctly? The movement of electrons is the fundamental interaction of all that we know.....right? It's the driving force behind chemical reactions of all kinds and those are at the root of, well everything.....right?

    Sooooo.....are we all connected through a massive universal circuit??

    Maybe that cannot be answered definitively.

    What about our human bodies, do we leave behind electrons when we touch things of opposite charge?

    Does sunlight transfer electrons from outer space into our bodies?

    If we look at an object does it's electrons interact with our body?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2011 #2


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    Re: A little philosophical electric discussion....

    Actually there are 4 fundamental forces of nature. The Electron is a main source of one of them, the electromagnetic force. In addition there is the Strong force, which holds the quarks, the particles that compose Protons and Neutrons together, the weak force, which gives us beta decay, and gravity, which makes it really painful to jump off of a bridge.

    Not at all.

    Of opposite charge of what? Your body is composed primarily of atoms of neutral charge. IE they have equal protons (positive charge) and electrons (negative charge) in each atom.

    Photons (the particle of light) are absorbed in our body. One of the main things they cause is heat! Hence why you get REALLY hot in the middle of summer if you stand out in the sun.

    Depends on what you mean by that. Light that is either emitted or reflected from an object is absorbed by certain molecules in the retina of your eye. This starts a chain of events that eventually leads to you seeing the object.
  4. Sep 12, 2011 #3
    Re: A little philosophical electric discussion....

    Hmmm..I see your point. But despite our electrical balance, are we not constantly undergoing chemical interactions with the things around us. Isn't it electrical attraction that makes molecules combine or change. If we touch water it sticks to us, isn't this electrical? A net neutral charge isn't indicative of exclusive neutrality is it?

    Right, but isn't that heat due to the movement of electrons between atoms agitated by the energy brought by the photon. Also, I know the jury is out in regard to what a photon is comprised of, but isn't there an electron - positron theory. So again, electron transfer?
  5. Sep 13, 2011 #4


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    Re: A little philosophical electric discussion....

    You are correct. The Van der Waal's force is one such effect. The charge from the atom "leaks" out because it is not 100% neutral thanks to the way the electrons occupy their orbitals. This attraction is one way that atoms and molecules stick together.

    Yes, the light causes movement of the electrons of the atom, as well as the atom as a whole. It can vibrate and rotate and such. To my knowledge there isn't really much debate on what a photon is. I think it is simply a quantization of the electromagnetic field. This usually isn't regarded as an interaction between electrons. After all, it is possible for things other than electrons to emit light. I believe any charged particle will do, such as a proton.
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