Electric field inside a sphere of charge

In summary, the electric field inside a sphere of charge is a measure of the force exerted by charged particles and is represented by the vector quantity E. It can be calculated using the equation E = kQ/r^2, and its direction is always radially towards or away from the center of the sphere. The electric field is uniform and does not depend on the size of the sphere, only on the charge and distance from the center. This is known as the shell theorem.
  • #1
maccha
53
0
So I understand that to find the electric field inside a sphere of charge you can use Gauss's Law by drawing a sphere inside, enclosing the charge. But, intuitively, I don't understand it.. why don't the charges outside this sphere contribute to the electric field? I know the total flux through the sphere you've drawn will be zero, but I don't know, it just doesn't make sense visually to me.
 
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  • #2
The fields due to the charges outside the sphere all point in different directions. The vector sum of these fields, as it turns out, adds up to zero.
 

What is an electric field inside a sphere of charge?

The electric field inside a sphere of charge is a measure of the force exerted by the charged particles on a test charge placed at any point inside the sphere. It is represented by the vector quantity E and is measured in units of volts per meter (V/m).

How is the electric field inside a sphere of charge calculated?

The electric field inside a sphere of charge can be calculated using the equation E = kQ/r^2, where k is the Coulomb's constant, Q is the charge of the sphere, and r is the distance from the center of the sphere to the point where the electric field is being calculated.

What is the direction of the electric field inside a sphere of charge?

The electric field inside a sphere of charge is always directed radially towards or away from the center of the sphere, depending on whether the charge is positive or negative. This means that the electric field lines are perpendicular to the surface of the sphere at every point.

Is the electric field inside a sphere of charge uniform?

Yes, the electric field inside a sphere of charge is uniform, meaning that it has the same magnitude and direction at all points inside the sphere. This is because the charge is evenly distributed on the surface of the sphere, resulting in a symmetrical electric field.

Does the electric field inside a sphere of charge depend on the size of the sphere?

No, the electric field inside a sphere of charge does not depend on the size of the sphere. It only depends on the charge of the sphere and the distance from the center of the sphere to the point where the electric field is being calculated. This is known as the shell theorem.

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