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Homework Help: Potential difference and static charge

  1. Nov 29, 2004 #1


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    Hi im doing a report on electrostatic force. It involves 2 steel plates which are connected to a 5kV DC power supply and are separated 8cm from each other. A table tennis ball painted in metallic paint (to conduct) is hung from a nylon wire between the two plates. When the power supply is switched on and the ball makes contact with one of the plates it begins oscillating, i.e. bouncing from one plate to the other and back again acting as a charge carrier. See my brilliantly drawn diagram :tongue:

    I am wondering why such a high voltage is required to get the ball oscillating, i.e. if i turn the powersupply down to 2kV the electrostatic force is not strong enough to "pull" the ball toward the oppositely charged plate and it stops in the middle. Any ideas would be helpfull along with relevant equations.

    P.S. ive measured the current and it is very small (10-100 nano amps)

    Attached Files:

  2. jcsd
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