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Capacitors reconnected (finding charge and potential)

  1. Nov 25, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    L4hGJ.jpg

    2. Relevant equations
    Q = CV

    3. The attempt at a solution
    It's already solved for me; I just don't understand it.

    In figure (b) it looks like there are two separate conductors: one on top, and one on the bottom. The top piece has +Q on the left side and -Q on the right, and the bottom piece has the same thing except reversed. Seems to me that this would make the net charge on each conductor 0... But somehow they get to figure (c) where the top piece has a net positive charge and the bottom piece has a net negative charge. What am I missing?
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data



    2. Relevant equations



    3. The attempt at a solution
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 25, 2011 #2

    gneill

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    The charges Q1 and Q2 are of different sizes. They don't completely cancel. They leave charge q remaining uncancelled.
     
  4. Nov 25, 2011 #3
    Ah there it is. Thanks!
     
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