Homework Help: Two identical like-charged conductive spheres are placed very close

1. Sep 7, 2009

dlslhc

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
Two identical like-charged conductive spheres are placed very close to each other, the charges willl redistribute themselves on the sphere's surface with an effective center-to-center distance rc so as to approximately satisfy the Coulomb's law, F = ke q1 q2 / (rc)^2. Is the value of rc larger or smaller than the physical center-to-center separation r between the two spheres? Explain

2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution
I guess the surfaces between the spheres will become neutral, and the charges will redistribute on the other side in each sphere, then i have no idea what to do next with the question.
I have not study for five years, forget most of them already, plz help, thx

Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
2. Sep 7, 2009

loveequation

You're right. Due to repulsion, the charges will end up on the far ends of the spheres. Hence the distance between the charges will be greater than the center to center distance between the spheres.

3. Sep 7, 2009

dlslhc

Okay, thanks very much