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Homework Help: Properties of neutral charges?

  1. Aug 19, 2013 #1
    Three objects (A, B, and C) are brought close to each other one at a time. A and B attract, but B and C repel. Simple true/false question involving "is this one positive/negative/etc." What I'm unsure about is whether or not A could possibly be neutral, or more specifically, is there any way to tell with certainty based on the limited information whether or not it IS neutral?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 19, 2013 #2


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    There are no neutral charges, only positive and negative charges. A neutral particle is neither attracted to nor repulsed by a charged particle.
  4. Aug 19, 2013 #3
    Fair enough. Thank you!
  5. Aug 20, 2013 #4


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    A charged object can attract neutral ones by polarizing them. A rubbed plastic rod (or a simple comb) will attract small and light paper pieces. See: http://www.physicsclassroom.com/class/estatics/u8l1c.cfm (experiment with a rubbed balloon and bits of paper). So you are right, A can be neutral, too.

    The problem should have been asked about three point-like charged objects.

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