milk - Note-A-Rific: Millikan The equations we have been...

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Note-A-Rific: Millikan The equations we have been studying up till now were used Robert A. Millikan to find the charge on a single electron. Up till this point, scientists had a pretty good model of the atom, but were not able to calculate the very small charges on its parts. In 1909 Millikan set up his famous (we’ll, at least famous to physicists!) experiment, the Oil Drop Experiment . The apparatus was actually quite simple… There were two parallel plates set at a specific distance apart with a known voltage between them. He drilled a very small hole in the center of the top one, which had the positive charge. He then used an atomizer to spray very fine drops of mineral oil over the top plate. o An atomizer is like those fancy perfume bottles you see that have a ball you squeeze to make the perfume spray out. ! Just as an aside, atomizers from perfume bottles were actually the basis for the invention of gasoline carburetors on cars. o Friction between the nozzle of the atomizer and the mineral oil droplets caused some of the drops to gain a small charge (they had been charged by friction). Just by chance, some of the oil drops might fall down the hole in the top plate.
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milk - Note-A-Rific: Millikan The equations we have been...

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