Very Annoying Problem

  • Thread starter LuGoBi
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In summary, the conversation discusses calculating the electric field generated by a charge on the bottom of a container filled with water, taking into account the differences between the electrostatic constants in air and water. The method of images is mentioned as a way to solve this problem, but the speaker suggests consulting a textbook for more information. There is also a mention of using Gauss' Law and trigonometry as other potential approaches.
  • #1

LuGoBi

This is killing me. I have an electrical charge in the air and below it I have a container filled with water. How do I calculate the electric field generated by the charge on the bottom of the cointainer? Bear in mind the electrostatic constant in water is different than from air.
 
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  • #2
Assuming the surface of the water is like an infinite plane, this is a standard image problem treated in most textbooks.
 
  • #3
pam said:
Assuming the surface of the water is like an infinite plane, this is a standard image problem treated in most textbooks.

Could you ellaborate, then?
 
  • #4
I can't go through the whole method of images.
You may have to look at a book.
 
  • #5
smells like homework?
 
  • #6
Excuses me, pam (or others), but doesn't the method of images require that the boundary region be a (grounded) perfect conductor?

Treating the problem in a brute-force manner (Gauss' Law, Cartesian coordinates), this doesn't sound TOO bad. You just need to invoke some pretty clever trigonometry to account for the surface of the water.
 

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