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Induced charges and electrostatic potential

  1. Aug 29, 2011 #1
    There is one point im unclear upon in terms of indued charges.

    If a charge is induced by another charge, will the potential from the induced charge have an effect on the inducing charge. It seems that if it were the case you would be getting (increasing) energy from nothing, however if it werent true it seems strange that it would have no effect on the charge as it is still an electric feild.

    i hope i was clear enough, if not let me know

  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 29, 2011 #2
    What sort of 'effect' were you thinking of?

    Bear in mind that induced charges are every bit as real charges as the inducing charge.
  4. Aug 29, 2011 #3
    by effect i mean, would it take work to move the inducing charge against the induced charge's electric field.
  5. Aug 29, 2011 #4
    Yes, of course that is how electric motors/generators work.
    Of course you have to be careful about the sign of the work since the induced charge and inducing charge have opposite signs.
  6. Aug 29, 2011 #5
    Yes, the induced charge creates its own fields which effect everything else in the system. However, you don't get energy from nothing, because some external work is being put in to being together the system in the first place against these fields.
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