Lab: Electric Fields The objective of this lab is to explore electric field based on different charge configurations. Background information on field theory: In an electric field theory, a charge affects the space around it, creating a field. Another charge entering this space is affected by that field and experiences a force. In this scenario, the two charges do not directly interact with each other; one charge creates a field and the other charge interacts directly with that field. The direction of the electrical force on a charge is along the direction of the field. Part I: Selecting different charge configurations Pick three charge configurations involving one positive charge, one negative charge, two positive charges, and two charges with an opposite polarity. You will select the magnitude for these charges. Part II : Predict Using your understanding of electric forces and electric fields, draw the electric field lines for all of these configurations. At this point you are not making any calculations, but you are making predictions about how the electric field around the charges will look. While you are making these predictions, please do not reference the internet or your textbook. Draw the field lines for the isolated charges below. Make sure you are sketching continuous field lines.
Positive charge: ______ Negative charge: _______
Two like charges: ______ Two unlike charges: ______
Part III: In this part, you are going to prove your prediction by verifying the electric field lines using vectors. Make sure to specify the amount of the charge and the distance between the charges. You will also need to use a small positive test charge. Calculate the electric field resultant vector on the positive test charge at different points in the field. Perform the calculations at a minimum of at least four points for each configuration. Use the following grid for both single charge configurations.
Use the following grid for two charges with the same polarity.
Use the following grid for two charges with opposite polarity.
Part IV: Use the computer simulation to further confirm your hypothesis and/or your calculations. Access the “Charges and Field” simulation package from Phet. Make sure to select “Show E-Field”. The E-Field sensor acts similar to a positive test charge. Does the simulation agree with your findings in part III? If not explain. Part V: Reflect on your learning What I observed during the simulation: What connections I made: What I now understand: What I still wonder about: Part VI: Homework Using the internet, research at least two applications of electric fields and explain how they work.