Electrostatics

and Electricity

Reference - Forumla Sheet

Content Overview

⚠ Students equipped with sensitive medical equipment such as pace makers or insulin pumps or students with a family/self-history of heart-related illnesses are to be cautious around and avoid large voltages

Activities

Charging Lab 1 - Determining whether charges affect different objects

Charging Lab 2 - Discovering how amount and type of charge affect different objects

Fun Fly Stick - a hand-held Van de Graaff generator

Polarity Shift - Pong with charges simulator

Wimshurst Machine - Generates and holds charges in Leyden Jars

Topics

Charge Types - Positive & Negative

Charging via Conduction, Friction, and Induction

Grounding

Faraday Cage

Electric Field Lines

Coulomb's Law

Students are Expected to Understand

The Behavior and Interactions Between Charges

How to Read and Interpret Field Line Diagrams

Applications for Electrostatic Charges

Some Notes on Electrostatics

  • This unit focuses primarily on concepts and very little Math will be involved. Having said that, this unit tends to be a greater challenge than previous topics to many students
  • In many cases, you will not be able to directly see the static charges, but instead their observable effects
  • Only negative charges, electrons, can move. Positive charges, protons, stay in place.
  • A ground is a path or place that can accept or donate a large number of electrons, typically the Earth itself. A ground can be used to turn something neutral OR charge something depending on its use
  • Like the gravitational field, the strength of the electrostatic field is reduced significantly over small distances. This is because it also follows the inverse square law for forces over distance

Additional Support

Crash Course - Electric Fields Khan Academy - Electric charge, field, and potential The Physics Classroom - Static Electricity

*The videos above are to be used as a supplement and are not a replacement for in-class experiences