Homework Help: Differences Between Conducting and Nonconducting Spherical Shells

1. Mar 26, 2013

Soccerdude

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

I am very confused about the differences between a conducting and nonconducting spherical shell. The biggest problem that I am having is the way that electric fields act both inside,outside, and within these shells. Any explanation would be much appreciated.

2. Mar 27, 2013

bp_psy

In electrostatics an object made of a conducting material we have 2 conditions :
- no currents
- no electric fields inside the material
These two condition make it such that the charge will be on the surfaces of the object.
For the spherical shell you should use Gauss's law to see how the charge is distributed on the inside and outside surfaces.

For objects made out non conductive materials, the charge is distributed in some way inside the material therefore we can have electric fields inside (again Gauss's law)

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