UIUC Physics
Lecture Demonstration
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Demo # 160

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Pith Balls

ID # 160

Description:

A rubber rod is rubbed with fur and then brought near a hanging pith ball. The rod repels the pith ball if they have the same charge, and attracts it if they have opposite charges. A glass rod with silk can also be used.

Picture of Pith Balls

Physics Concept:

  • Electricity and Magnetism
  • Electrostatics
  • Coulomb's Law

The demonstration takes about 1 minute to perform.

Dept. of Physics, Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1996.