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Why do smaller particles travel faster in gel electrophoresis?

  1. Feb 26, 2010 #1
    Hello guys,

    Sorry it is electrophoresis

    In electrophoresis is a similar electromotive force applied to all particles or are all particles accelerated at the same rate?

    What I mean is let's say if every particle gets 10N.

    F=ma and bigger particle would travel slower. So can't I include this in the answer. If they are only accelerated at the same rate I can understand how different particles would have different resistances?

    So is the answer F=ma?

    Thank you! :smile:
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2010
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 26, 2010 #2


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    Think about the steady state situation where each particle is traveling at a constant velocity. The electrophoretic force must be opposed by another counteracting force. What is this force, and how might it depend on particle size?
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