Teaching Physics with the Physics Suite

Edward F. Redish

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Ranking capacitors

In the figure below are shown four identical capacitors and two identical batteries connected in series and parallel. ranking the variables for the four capacitors. Use > to mean greater than and = to mean equal. Do not use < signs. Put your answer in the box below. It should be a string of letters that looks something like E = F > G > H meaning E and F are equal and the biggest and G is next and H is the smallest. (You, of course, should use C1, C2, etc. arranged in the proper order instead of E, F, G, and H.) Explain how you got each of your answers.

A. What is the ranking of the voltage drops across the capacitors?

B. What is the ranking of the magnitudes of the electric fields inside the capacitors?

C. What is the ranking of the energy stored in the capacitors?

D. What is the ranking of the net charge in each capacitor?

Page last modified April 30, 2010: E63