Franklin Bell

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Questions regarding the Franklin Bell experiment.

1. Given the iron nut suspended between the positive bell and negative bell were equidistant (theoretically in the middle).
Which pole would the nut hit first?
2. Does the electron quality change when the suspended nut hits either bell. I'm a little foggy on why the nut oscillates. I'm thinking when ithe nut hits , say the positve bell, it bounces off the bell and pick up a positve charge which make it move to the negative bell. Please explain?

thanks
 

kuruman

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Strictly speaking and theoretically the nut could just hang there as attractive on either side of it exactly balance. Practically, will might an air current or statistical fluctuation of ions in the air around it that will upset the balance. At that point the nut will move towards the electrode that exerts the stronger force which will increase the induced charges opposite charge facing that electrode, which will make the force of attraction even stronger and so on until the nut hits the attracting electrode. Whether it is the positive or negative is a matter of chance.

Here is a nice video of how this works.
 

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