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Electric Field of a Hollow Cylidrical Conductor

  1. Mar 30, 2013 #1
    Consider a hollow cylindrical conductor in vacuum with its axis aligned with
    the z-axis, and with a positive surface charge density σ. The direction of the
    electric field is radial and its magnitude E is only a function of the distance r
    from the z-axis, E = E(r).

    Use Gauss' law to obtain the magnitude of the electric field at r < R and
    at r ≥ R, where R is the radius of the conductor.

    I don't know whether I have got my brain stuck in a rut but I can't for the life of me solve this. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated :D
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 30, 2013 #2

    BruceW

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    hey, welcome to physicsforums!
    Try using Gauss' law, as it says. What kind of Gaussian surface should you use to take advantage of the symmetry?
     
  4. Mar 30, 2013 #3
    A cylindrical surface? With surface area of 2[itex]\pi[/itex]rl ?
     
  5. Mar 30, 2013 #4
    Or should I just use a circular one because the conductor is infinite either side?
     
  6. Mar 30, 2013 #5

    BruceW

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    Use the cylinder with surface area of 2*PI*r*l
    Do the calculation using the information they have given you, and it should all come out nicely. (Even though the conductor is infinite, it doesn't go bad).
     
  7. Mar 30, 2013 #6

    rude man

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    Go with that one.
     
  8. Mar 31, 2013 #7
    Excellent I believe I have got the correct answer :D Thank you so much for your help
     
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