Rutherford and electric force.... Rutherford thought that most of the alpha particles would pass throught the cloud of positive charge if the thomson model was correct - but why did he think this would be the case? Ive read that apparently the charge would be spread over a greater area so it would therefore be weaker, but surely electronstatic force has nothing to do with the size of an object - just its charge and distance from the other charged particle? Surely an alpha particle at distance X from gold atom would experience exactly the same sized repulsive force from the a gold atom whether this was concentrated in a nucleus or in a larger cloud? - both would have the same field as both have the same charge. Am I wrong? Thanks.