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Electric Flux of equilateral triangle

  1. Sep 18, 2014 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    What is the flux of the uniform electric field E=8 N/C through an equilateral triangle with the side a=1m, if the normal vector makes 60 degrees to the direction of the electric field.


    2. Relevant equations
    [itex]\phi[/itex]=EAcosø


    3. The attempt at a solution
    E=8 N/C
    A= √3/4 m^2

    Is the ø in this equation 60 degrees or 90-60 = 30 degrees?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 18, 2014 #2

    TSny

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    Hello msampsel. Welcome to PF!

    See if you can answer this question by considering a couple of special examples:

    (1) What should the flux be if the angle between the normal and the field is 0? What value of ø in the formula will give this result?

    (2) What should the flux be if the angle between the normal and the field is 90? What value of ø in the formula will give this result?
     
  4. Sep 18, 2014 #3
    (1) The flux would be the product of the field and the area (EA) because they are perpendicular to the plane. The value of ø would be 0 because cos(0)=1.

    (2) The flux would be 0 because the field would then be parallel to the plane. The value of ø would be 90 because cos(90)=0.
     
  5. Sep 18, 2014 #4

    TSny

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    OK, good. Based on those two examples, how is the angle ø in the formula related to the angle between the field and the normal direction?
     
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