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Electron repulsion , wear

  1. Mar 2, 2013 #1
    Hi a simple question , hope so.

    If when we put a hand on the table we never actually touch the table just the electrons of our hand touch the ones on the table.The a ball bearing the balls should never actually touch the metal shells both inner and outer just the electrons of them.
    If this is the case then why do we get wear and damage from aging?
    Because as I believe from what I know mechanical and other kinds if wear only happen to the macro world not the micro one as I can't imagine how could one wear out a electron.
    So this being said why does the macro world materials wear if they are actually just objects made up from micro world or atoms/particles etc.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 3, 2013 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Because it does not require surface contact the way we intuitively imagine it.
    The electromagnetic forces push on the material of the surfaces in contact which is sometimes enough to dislodge bits and/or transfer energy between the objects involved.

    You are right - you don't wear out an electron. Macro wear and tear is about bits being removed from surfaces in contact. A worn bearing is lighter than a new one.
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