Electrons @ battery negative terminal

  • #1
2
1

Main Question or Discussion Point

Does the negative terminal of a battery have a negative charge due to having a surplus of electrons? If so, then why do the surplus electrons from the negative terminal of the battery not discharge to the human body or earth (which have a neutral charge) when touched?....thereby causing the battery to lose charge.


Thanks in advance for answers. I'm obviously new to physics.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Nugatory
Mentor
12,770
5,370
then why do the surplus electrons from the negative terminal of the battery not discharge to the human body or earth (which have a neutral charge) when touched?
They do. But only a very small amount of charge moves into the body before it reaches the same potential as the battery terminal and then the flow stops. It's like trying to pour water into a stopped-up drainpipe - only so much will go down the drain before the flow stops.

If we create a circuit by touching a conductor to both terminals of the battery, we will get a current flow that will discharge the battery fairly quickly.

If you are not familiar with the concepts of potential and capacitance, you'll want to learn about them. They are far more useful for understanding current flows than thinking in terms of electrons moving around.
 
  • Like
Likes cianfa72, vanhees71 and wphays
  • #3
2
1
They do. But only a very small amount of charge moves into the body before it reaches the same potential as the battery terminal and then the flow stops. It's like trying to pour water into a stopped-up drainpipe - only so much will go down the drain before the flow stops.

If we create a circuit by touching a conductor to both terminals of the battery, we will get a current flow that will discharge the battery fairly quickly.

If you are not familiar with the concepts of potential and capacitance, you'll want to learn about them. They are far more useful for understanding current flows than thinking in terms of electrons moving around.
Thank you
 
  • Like
Likes davenn

Related Threads on Electrons @ battery negative terminal

Replies
16
Views
6K
Replies
5
Views
4K
Replies
4
Views
929
  • Last Post
Replies
19
Views
2K
Replies
8
Views
11K
Replies
4
Views
6K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
139
Replies
1
Views
2K
Top