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MIT Physics 8.02 - Electricity & Magnetism

SECTION : Electrostatics  

SUBJECT: The Electrostatic Zoo  

NOTE: You must be connected to the Internet the first time you view this simulation, at which point the codebase for all the simulations will be downloaded to your computer. This process make take a few minutes, as the codebase is roughly 9MB in size. Subsequent viewings of the applets will run from your local copy.


The Electrostatic Zoo simulates the interaction between charged particles, and illustrates the electric fields generated as a result. Charges in the Zoo interact via the Coulomb force, with a Pauli repulsive force at close distances and a damping force proportional to velocity. The fields can be visualized in two ways: a "grass-seeds" representation (click on "Grass Seeds "), or a traditional vector field representation (adjust the "Field Visualization" slider), in addition to the real time renderings of the local field around each particle.

Use Start button to start simulation. Use Pause button to pause simulation. Click and drag on any particle to change its position. Use "Grass Seeds" to get a "grass-seeds" representaton of the electric field. Use "Equipotential Lines" to get a representaton of the electric potential field. Select and click "remove" to remove charge. Use "Add Random Positive" and "Add Random Negative" to add a positive or negative charge, respectively. Use "Toggle Field Lines on Selected" to toggle fieldlines on the selected charge(s). Control-click to select multiple charges.




Start Simulation
(Note: you must have Java™ J2SE v1.4+ JRE installed)