# Common static vs common electricity?

#### scott_sieger

Hi all,

I was wondering if any one can tell the forum what the difference is between common static electricity like the zap you get when you get out of a car or lightening and household electricity AC or DC.?

any one?

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#### neutroncount

Nothing...they are the same thing. Static electricity is just a built up charge on the surface of an insulated object from the accumulation of electrons.

#### russ_watters

Mentor
Static discharge is essentially a DC pulse.

#### scott_sieger

just a thought,

Static in the main is a product of nature.

Household Electricity is a product of man.

Does static discharge create or have magnetic field around it like household electricity? Has this been proven?.... Excuse my ignorance.

Last edited by a moderator:

#### Jonathan

If the current flows, there is a magnetic field.

#### scott_sieger

I have been thinking since posting the question.

When a lightening bolt strikes say only 500meters away that charged up feeling we experience.. like hair on it's end etc.....that's not a magnetic field is it?

Feels more like a static output of some sort. What would create that reaction do you think?

magnetic fields i suppose create that effect too...or do they?

#### Andre

Scott,

Seeing your interests, it certainly would help to consult some introductionary works on physics. This is a very nice one:

http://muller.lbl.gov/teaching/Physics10/PffP.html

Your view on the difference between static electricity and house hold current is very original But they both obey to the same laws. The big diffence between Static electric and house hold currents is the the supply. An object under Static electricity has accumulated a lot of electrical load, either too much or too few electrons actually. The moment it gets close to a conductor with another charge, a brief current will flow to even out the charges. The house hold electricity does exactly the same but the difference in charge will be repleshed by the electricity power plant so that there is no even out at the current continuous to flow.

#### Jonathan

That charged up feeling is due to static electricity. As your body becomes charged, your hairs repel each other. If the potential difference between you and the cloud is enough to overcome the electrical resistance of the air, the static electricity becomes flowing electricity.

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