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Electroscope problem

  1. May 28, 2013 #1
    A fully charged electroscope is touched with a neutral balloon. It is observed that the foil leaves of the electroscope are unaffected when the electroscope is touched w/ the balloon.

    Explain why the foil leaves were unaffected when the charged electroscope was touched by the neutral balloon.

    In this problem, should the answer be because the balloon is an insulator? I think this because in order for there to be no effect, there must be no transfer of charge, and hence an insulator. My friend thinks otherwise.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 28, 2013 #2


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    I think you are right. Why does your friend think otherwise?
  4. May 28, 2013 #3
    Ok thanks. My friend just thought it should be a conductor for some reason.
  5. May 28, 2013 #4


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    If it were a conductor (like if it were metallic) then there would be some charge transfer and the electroscope would be affected. But the problem says it isn't. Must be an insulator. Not sure what your friend was thinking.
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