DR. CHandralekha I am saurabh i had a question to ask related to class 12 Ch2-electrostatic potential and capitance my question is why does the value of electric potential V not depend on the valeu of q0 as its said V=U/q0 where V is independent of the value of q0

Asked by saurabh parnerkar | 10th Apr, 2011, 12:00: AM

Expert Answer:

The electric potential is the amount of potential energy per unit charge.

Say you place a charge into an electric field. The electric field puts a force on the charge and acts to move it. In the presence of the electric field, the charge has a certain amount of potential energy that can be converted into kinetic energy when the electric field does work to move the charge. The total amount of potential energy used up (or gained) by the charge depends on its starting and ending locations within the electric field. If the system was left alone, the electric field will have moved the charge from a situation of higher potential energy to one of lower potential energy, converting potential energy into kinetic energy. If we chose to physically move the charge within the field, we could have done work on the charge and moved it from a region of lower potential energy to one of higher potential energy.

The amount of potential energy used or gained by a charge depends on the charge itself. A larger amount of charge will feel a stronger force from an electric field and thus experience a larger change in potential energy when it moves from one part of the field to another. Likewise, we would have to do more work on a larger charge to move it from regions of lower to higher potential in an electric field.

The electric potential, however, does NOT depend on the charge experiencing the force. Instead, the electric potential depends on the electric field itself.

Answered by  | 12th Apr, 2011, 10:35: AM

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