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Charge on capacitors in parallel and series

  1. Feb 7, 2005 #1
    How do I find the charge on each capacitor?

    -------c1----------------------
    |........................|................|
    |........................|................|
    V.......................c2...............c3
    |_______________|__________|

    I know how to find the total charge which would be q=Ceq*v but I dont know how to find the charge on each individual capacitor.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 7, 2005 #2
    Do you know how to find [tex]C_{eq}[/tex]? Add up the capacitors in parallel (simply add the capacitances). This will give you [tex]C_2[/tex] + [tex]C_3[/tex]. This new equivalent capacitance is in series with [tex]C_1[/tex]. Use the series formula [tex]\frac{1}{C_{eq}} = \frac{1}{C_1} + \frac{1}{C_{23}}[/tex] After you have found the total equivalent capacitance you can get the total charge, and find the individual charges from there. I don't know if that will help you any.

    As a hint, charge is conserved across capacitors in series (the equivalent charge is the same for each capacitor) but with capacitors in parallel you have to add the individual charges to get the total charge.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2005
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