# e3 - Properties of Conductors in Electrostatic Equilibrium:...

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1 Electrostatics 3 onductors in Electrostatic Equilibrium; Conductors in Electrostatic Equilibrium; Capacitors Properties of Conductors in Electrostatic Equilibrium: When no net motion of charge occurs within a conductor, the conductor is said to be in electrostatic equilibrium 1.The electric field is zero everywhere inside the conducting material 2. Any excess charge on an isolated conductor resides entirely on its surface 3. The electric field just outside a charged conductor is perpendicular to the conductor’s surface 4. On an irregularly shaped conductor, the charge accumulates at locations where the radius of curvature of the surface is smallest (that is, at sharp points) 5. the conductor’s surface is an equipotential surface Property 1: The electric field is zero everywhere inside the conducting material Consider if this were not true If there were an electric field inside the conductor, the free charge there would move and there would be a flow of charge If there were a movement of charge, the conductor would not be in equilibrium Property 2: Any excess charge on an isolated conductor resides entirely on its surface is is a direct result of the 1/r 2 pulsion between like this is a direct result of the 1/r repulsion between like charges in Coulomb’s Law if some excess of charge could be placed inside the conductor, the repulsive forces would push them as far apart as possible, causing them to migrate to the surface

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2 Property 3: The electric field just outside a charged conductor is perpendicular to the conductor’s surface Consider what would happen if this were not true The component of E along the surface would cause the charge to move hence the conductor would not be in equilibrium therefore the E field must be perpendicular to the surface Property 4 On an irregularly shaped conductor, the charge accumulates at locations where the radius of curvature of the surface is smallest (that is, at sharp points) Property 5: the entire conductor is at the same potential since the conductor is in electrostatic equilibrium, ere is no net electric force acting and charges do there is no net electric force acting, and charges do not move the electric field points towards regions of lower potential, but E is 0 inside the conductor e potenti l i the me n he e in ide the
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## This note was uploaded on 03/22/2011 for the course MAC AEPH114 taught by Professor Knutt during the Spring '11 term at McGill.

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e3 - Properties of Conductors in Electrostatic Equilibrium:...

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