# Solving Electrostatics Problems: Contact of Neutral & Charged Spheres

• apnut821
In summary, the conversation discusses a series of problems involving two insulated metal spheres, one of which has a charge of +1.80 E -16 C. The total charge of the system before and after separation is 0 C and +1.80 E -16 C respectively. After separation, sphere X has a charge of 0 C and sphere Y has a charge of +1.80 E -16 C.
apnut821
Hi, i have been assigned a series of problems that basically follow the same pattern, but I am unable to solve the first one which is making it difficult to solve the others.

here it is

An insulated metal sphere (X), that has no net charge (neutral), is brought into contact with a similar sphere (Y) that has a charge of +1.80 E -16 C. The two spheres are the separated. a) What is the total charge of the system before and after separation? b) What are the charges of spheres X and Y after seperation?

thanks

!a) Before separation, the total charge of the system is 0 C. After separation, the total charge of the system is +1.80 E -16 C. b) After separation, sphere X has a charge of 0 C and sphere Y has a charge of +1.80 E -16 C.

Hello,

Solving electrostatics problems can be challenging, but with some practice and understanding of the basic principles, you can successfully solve these types of problems.

In this particular problem, we are dealing with the contact of a neutral sphere (X) and a charged sphere (Y). Before we can solve the problem, we need to understand some key concepts. First, when two objects come into contact, they can transfer charge between them. This is known as charging by contact. Second, charge is always conserved, meaning that the total charge before and after the interaction will remain the same.

Now, let's look at the specific questions in this problem. For part (a), we need to determine the total charge of the system before and after separation. Before separation, the total charge is simply the charge of sphere Y, which is +1.80 E -16 C. After separation, since the spheres are no longer in contact, they will have their own independent charges. Therefore, the total charge of the system after separation will be the sum of the charges of sphere X and Y. Keep in mind that the total charge must still equal +1.80 E -16 C, as charge is conserved.

For part (b), we need to find the charges of spheres X and Y after separation. Since the spheres are no longer in contact, we can treat them as two separate systems. Sphere X, which was initially neutral, will now have a charge due to the transfer of charge from sphere Y. To find the charge of sphere X, we can apply the principle of charge conservation and set the total charge of the system to be equal to the charge of sphere X. This will allow us to solve for the charge of sphere X.

For sphere Y, we know that it initially had a charge of +1.80 E -16 C and that it transferred some of this charge to sphere X. Therefore, the remaining charge on sphere Y will be the initial charge minus the charge transferred to sphere X.

I hope this explanation helps you understand the problem better and gives you a starting point to solve it. Remember to always apply the principles of charge conservation and charging by contact when solving electrostatics problems. Good luck!

## What is the difference between a neutral and a charged sphere?

A neutral sphere has an equal number of positive and negative charges, resulting in a net charge of zero. A charged sphere, on the other hand, has an unequal number of positive and negative charges, resulting in a net charge that can be either positive or negative.

## How does the contact of a neutral and charged sphere affect the charge distribution?

When a neutral and charged sphere come into contact, the charges on the two spheres will redistribute themselves in order to reach a new equilibrium. The neutral sphere will acquire a net charge opposite in sign to the charged sphere, while the charged sphere will have a decrease in its net charge.

## What is the formula for calculating the final charge on each sphere after contact?

The final charge on each sphere after contact can be calculated using the equation Qf = (Q1 + Q2)/2, where Qf is the final charge, Q1 is the initial charge of the neutral sphere, and Q2 is the initial charge of the charged sphere.

## How can the distance between the spheres affect the final charge distribution?

The distance between the spheres can affect the final charge distribution by influencing the strength of the electric field between them. The closer the spheres are, the stronger the electric field will be, resulting in a greater redistribution of charges.

## Are there any real-life applications of solving electrostatics problems involving the contact of neutral and charged spheres?

Yes, there are many real-life applications of this concept. For example, it can be used to understand and predict the behavior of electrically charged objects, such as lightning strikes, and also in the design and functioning of electronic devices, such as capacitors.

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