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Homework Help: Electric field of Continuous charge Distribution

  1. Jan 14, 2012 #1
    A line of positive charge is formed into a semicircle of radius R = 57.8 cm, as shown in the figure below. (The figure is a semicircle above the x axis with angle θ measured from positive y
    axis centred at the origin)

    The charge per unit length along the semicircle is described by the expression λ(θ) = λ0cosθ. The total charge on the semicircle is 13.2 µC.
    (a) Calculate the value of the constant λ0.
    (b) Calculate the total force on a charge of 3.11 µC placed at the center of curvature.

    I did part a i found the answer 1.14e-05 C/m. but for part (b) i cant seem to setup the integral

    any help would be appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 14, 2012 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    You need to find the force due to a small part of the semi-circle at angle θ which is inside the arc Rdθ, then integrate that over the whole range of θ.

    Where do you get stuck?
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