Question

Coulomb measured the deflection of sphere A when spheres A and B had equal charges and were a distance, r, apart. He then made the charge on B one-third the charge on A. How far apart would the two spheres then have had to be for A to have had the same deflection that it had before?

Solution

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Coulomb's law states that the electric force FF between charges qAq_A and qBq_B at a distance rr from each other is given as:

F=kqAqBr2F = \dfrac{k q_A q_B}{r^2}

where k=9109 Nm2C2k = 9 \cdot 10^9 ~\mathrm{\dfrac{N m^2}{C^2}} is Coulomb constant.

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