I'm a little bothered with the inconsistency in notation of electric potential (V) and potential difference (ΔV) because they're apparently used synonymously... but what really confuses me more is that I've seen absolute value around ΔV sometimes. It may not matter (theoretically or mathematically) but I'd appreciate if somebody could clear it up for me!(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

For the following three equations, does it matter if the absolute value of ΔV is taken? Also, why?

[itex]\Delta V=-\int_{a}^{b}\vec{E}\cdot \mathrm{d}\vec{l}[/itex]

[itex]C=\frac{Q}{\Delta V}[/itex]

[itex]U_{C}=\frac{1}{2}Q\Delta V=\frac{1}{2}C\Delta V^{2}[/itex]

For the latter two, I thought that ΔV would have to be positive even without the absolute value since it deals with capacitance... I don't think negative capacitance is possible? But for the first one, it doesn't seem to make sense to take the absolute value of ΔV since the negative of the integral of the field is taken.

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# Abs Values in Electric Potential & Potential Difference?

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