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written by Tom Henderson
supported by the National Science Foundation
This is an interactive tutorial for introductory physics on the topic of Coulomb's Law. It explains the concepts underlying Coulomb's Law equation, provides example calculations, and allows students to self-test their understanding.

This page is part of The Physics Classroom tutorials for students of introductory physics. SEE RELATED ITEMS on this page for a link to a closely related tutorial on inverse square relationships by the same author.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Electricity & Magnetism
- DC Circuits
- Electrostatics
= Coulomb's Law
- High School
- Lower Undergraduate
- Instructional Material
= Problem/Problem Set
= Tutorial
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Activity
- New teachers
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Formats:
text/html
image/gif
Access Rights:
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Restriction:
© 1996 Tom Henderson
Keywords:
Coulomb, Coulomb's equation, charge, charge interaction, electric force, electrostatics, interactive tutorial, static electricity, tutorial
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created February 1, 2010 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
June 25, 2011 by Tom Henderson
Last Update
when Cataloged:
December 12, 2008

This resource is part of 3 Physics Front Topical Units.


Topic: "Static" Electricity
Unit Title: Electric Force

Electric force and gravitational force are two types of non-contact forces. Coulomb's Law equation for electrical force bears a strong resemblance to Newton's equation for universal gravitation. Both show an inverse square relationship between force and separation distance. This interactive tutorial will help K-8 science teachers gain insight about the nature of electrical forces, which, unlike gravitational forces, can be either attractive or repulsive.

Links to Units:

Topic: "Static" Electricity
Unit Title: Electric Force

This interactive tutorial, part of The Physics Classroom, does a first-rate job of explaining the concepts underlying Coulomb's Law.

Link to Unit:

Topic: Electricity and Electrical Energy
Unit Title: Electric Force and Coulomb's Law

Middle school teachers may want to revisit Coulomb's Law before doing a unit on electricity. This interactive tutorial is very beneficial in explaining force as a vector quantity, how to determine the direction of electrical force vectors, and content support in calculations related to Coulomb's Law. It is part of The Physics Classroom collection.

Links to Units:
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Record Link
AIP Format
T. Henderson, (1996), WWW Document, (http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm).
AJP/PRST-PER
T. Henderson, The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law (1996), <http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm>.
APA Format
Henderson, T. (2008, December 12). The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law. Retrieved September 2, 2014, from http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm
Chicago Format
Henderson, Tom. The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law. December 12, 2008. http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm (accessed 2 September 2014).
MLA Format
Henderson, Tom. The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law. 1996. 12 Dec. 2008. National Science Foundation. 2 Sep. 2014 <http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Tom Henderson", Title = {The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law}, Volume = {2014}, Number = {2 September 2014}, Month = {December 12, 2008}, Year = {1996} }
Refer Export Format

%A Tom Henderson
%T The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law
%D December 12, 2008
%U http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Henderson, Tom
%D December 12, 2008
%T The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law
%V 2014
%N 2 September 2014
%8 December 12, 2008
%9 text/html
%U http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/estatics/U8L3b.cfm


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The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Coulomb's Law:

Is Supplemented By The Physics Classroom: Electric Force - Inverse Square Law

This tutorial by the same author explores the Inverse Square Law as it applies to electrostatic force.

relation by Caroline Hall
Has Student Extra Flickr Physics

Visit The Physics Classroom's Flickr Galleries and enjoy a photo overview of the topic of static electricity.

relation by Tom Henderson
Has Student Extra The Calculator Pad

Improve your problem-solving skills with problems, answers and solutions from The Calculator Pad.

relation by Tom Henderson
Has Teaching Guide The Laboratory

Looking for a lab that coordinates with this page? Try the Coulomb's Law Lab from The Laboratory.

relation by Tom Henderson
Has Teaching Guide Curriculum Corner

Practice makes perfect with this computational activity from The Curriculum Corner.

relation by Tom Henderson

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