# Solution - Van De Graaff Generator

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#### Question

(a) Two large conducting spheres carrying charges Q1 and Q2 are brought close to each other. Is the magnitude of electrostatic force between them exactly given by Q1 Q2/4π2, where is the distance between their centres?

#### Solution

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In a Van de Graaff type generator a spherical metal shell is to be a 15 × 106 V electrode. The dielectric strength of the gas surrounding the electrode is 5 × 107 Vm−1. What is the minimum radius of the spherical shell required? (You will learn from this exercise why one cannot build an electrostatic generator using a very small shell which requires a small charge to acquire a high potential.)

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