Q:

What is electrical force?

A:

An electric force is an attractive or repulsive force between two charged objects. Electric forces are attractive when two objects have opposite charges and repulsive when two objects have like charges. Electric forces are different from magnetic forces, although the two are strongly related.

Static electric forces are relatively easy to observe in action. For instance, conventional foam or packing peanuts tend to stick to hands and other objects. This is due to a charge in the surface of the peanut, which is attracted to the opposite charges in hands or other objects. Similarly, removing a wool hat can cause hair to stand on end. As the hat rubs the hair, it picks up an electrical charge; this also leaves each hair with a charge. Because the hairs have like charges, they try to move away from one another, and stand on end.

Electric forces and magnetic forces are both products of electric charges, but while electric forces can be from static or moving charges, magnetic forces only arise when a charged object is in motion. Permanent magnets are possible in certain metals because of the motions of electrons around the atoms that compose them. Electric charges are caused by the presence or absence of electrons and so moving electrons around an atom actually produce a small magnetic field.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What two things affect the size of electric force?

    A:

    The size of the electric force between two objects is affected by the strength of the charge and the distance between the objects. Objects with strong positive and negative charges will have a greater electric force. As the distance between the objects decreases, the electrical force increases.

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  • Q:

    What is electrical discrimination?

    A:

    Electrical discrimination occurs when a protective device near a fault or short comes on and keeps the other circuits working properly. Discrimination can either partially block a fault from disrupting other systems or completely block it, depending on the type of protection device that is installed.

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  • Q:

    What is a static force?

    A:

    A static force refers to a constant force applied to a stationary object. A static force is too weak to move an object because it is being countered by equally strong opposite forces.

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  • Q:

    What is electromotive force?

    A:

    Electromotive force is the difference in electrical potential between two points that compels electricity to flow to an area of lower potential in order to equalize charge. According to the HyperPhysics website, the force is measured in volts and frequently abbreviated as "emf."

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