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# Feedback Comments on Static Electricity

by Ron Kurtus

A total of 689 comments and questions have been sent in. They are listed according to date.

## List of next 10 letters

### Country

Static Electricity Suggested experiment USA

Electrostatic Induction More electrons than protons Phillippines

Reducing Static Electricity Shocks Reducing static on a trampoline USA

Electrostatic Induction Charge created when rubbing materials together Pakistan

Reducing Static Electricity Shocks Camera acts up from static electricity Canada

Basics of Static Electricity Is electricity from burning coal static? Australia

Causes of Static Electricity Why would plastic cause static electricity? USA

Static Electricity Sparks Explain how a spark jumps from a finger Namibia

Causes of Static Electricity Static in jet airplanes Australia

Static Electric Materials Creating static charges in humid Cambodia USA

Next 10

First 10 letters

## Suggested experiment

Topic: Static Electricity

### Question

February 18, 2017

In answer to the Cambodia teacher. I taught math/science camp. Retired math teacher. Shred tissue paper up into tiny pieces, use a plastic notebook binder sheet to pick up shreds with static electricity, kids k-12 love the experiment, plus it's cheap. MK BS M Ed. I even had Pre-K students try it.

Martha - USA

27887

Thanks for the suggestion. I'll pass it on.

## More electrons than protons

Topic: Electrostatic Induction

### Question

January 12, 2017

what is the overall charge of an object that has 18 more electrons than protons?

jeffrey - Phillippines

27799

Negative ions may have a few more electrons than protons. It would be very unusual to have 18 more electrons than protons. However, since electrons have a -1 charge, the overall charge of the object would be negative 18 or -18.

## Reducing static on a trampoline

Topic: Reducing Static Electricity Shocks

### Question

December 23, 2016

My trampoline has a safety net surrounding it.I put my water hose on jet spray and cleaned the net.That got rid of the static instantly. Now the kids can play on it in peace. The accumulation of dust on the screen was the problem.

Ernestine - USA

27578

Thanks you for your information on solving the problem of build-up of static electricity on a trampoline.

## Charge created when rubbing materials together

Topic: Electrostatic Induction

### Question

October 16, 2016

What charge will be created on following bodies when we rub them against each other
1-metal vs metal
2-insulator vs insulator
3-metal vs insulator

israr khan - Pakistan

27384

Much depends on which metals and insulators are used. See Materials that Cause Static Electricity for a list of materials and how well they attract or give up electrons.

## Camera acts up from static electricity

Topic: Reducing Static Electricity Shocks

### Question

October 1, 2016

It seems that static electricity from my body is causing my camera to crash(freeze) and my viewfinder and screen to function abnormally (become pixelated with flashing bands of colour). Does this make sense? If so what can I do? (Photography is my serious hobby).
Thanks,
Lou

27339

It is unusual but certainly possible that excess static electricity is causing problems with the electronics in your camera. One thing you can try is to ground yourself before trying to take a picture by touching some metal object. Also, try to avoid polyester clothes when taking pictures. Dry skin on some materials can create static electricity in your body.

I hope these ideas help. Let me know how things turn out. And best wishes with your hobby.

## Is electricity from burning coal static?

Topic: Basics of Static Electricity

### Question

August 28, 2016

hi, my science teacher and i have recently had an argument about whether or not the electricity generated by burning coal is static as it is a copper brush rubbing on a magnet. he thinks this is not so. i disagree. please settle our dispute

Wyatt - Australia

27242

Of course burning coal can be used to boil water to turn a generator and create AC or DC electricity. The rotating generator could also be used to create static electricity with a device like a Wimshurst electrostatic generator.

But also, when coal burns, the movement of air from the fire can create static electricity in the air. But I don't think that is what you were talking about.

I hope this helps clarify your discussion.

## Why would plastic cause static electricity?

Topic: Causes of Static Electricity

### Question

April 20, 2016

At work I was vacuuming dust off pieces of plywood with a shop vac. I was getting some pretty good zaps before I had enough. I taped a wire near the bottom of the plastic hose and put a copper squeeze clamp on the other end and put on the pallet rack. Obviously this worked and eliminated the very unpleasant snappage. My question is, what in the world caused this??? Plastic and wood are good insulators of course and this has not only me but maintenance personnel baffled as well. The lights?

David - USA

26951

Static electricity is the collection of electrical charges on the surface of the material. This works best on an insulator. A material that conducts electricity, like a copper wire, will allow the charges to pass through it. It helped drain off the charges from the plastic hose.

## Explain how a spark jumps from a finger

Topic: Static Electricity Sparks

### Question

April 9, 2016

Explain the spark jumps from a finger to a metal object when the air is dry

Sylvia - Namibia

26919

A static electric spark will jump from one material to another when the difference in the amount of positive (+) and negative (?) charges is sufficient to cause electrons to overcome the resistance of the air gap between the two materials. The electrons heat the air for a fraction of a second, causing the spark and zapping sound.

This works better with a metal object that will quickly conduct the electrons. Also, in dry air there is much less resistance to the spark that in humid air.

## Static in jet airplanes

Topic: Causes of Static Electricity

### Question

March 22, 2016

AIRPLANE TODAYS JET AIRCRAFT HAVE INCREASED SPEED AND FUEL FLOW TO THE FILTERS
WHEN THE FUEL LINE NOT BEING IN STRAIGHT LINE AND HAS BENDS= THE STATIC ELECTRICITY BECAUSE OF THE PRESSURE FROM THE FUEL PUMP ,EACH BEND MUST BE TO GROUND OR EARTH STRAP TO ELIMINATE THE CHANCE OF FIRE
THE WIRING LOOM IN THESE AIRCRAFT MUST HAVE A HEAT SENSOR TO THE COCKPIT AS THIS COVERING CAN CAUSE THE PROBLEM OF STATIC ELECTRICITY

Tex - Australia

26881

Thanks for the information.

## Creating static charges in humid Cambodia

Topic: Static Electric Materials

### Question

March 2, 2016

Hello,
A colleague of mine in Cambodia is trying to demonstrate static electricity to her students. Cambodia is very hot and very humid. She tried an experiment rubbing a balloon on hair and no static electricity was created. The balloons did not stick to their hair.
Any ideas for how to demonstrate static electricity in a humid place like Cambodia? Thanks!

P. - USA

26835

It is difficult to create static electricity in very humid weather. However, lightning storms do occur there, and that is extreme static electricity.

If her hair is dry and not oily, using a rubber comb might be more effective to create static electricity.

Rubbing a balloon on wool might create enough static electricity to stick the balloon to the wall, even in humid weather.

Instead of simply demonstrating static electricity, she might let the students experiment rubbing different materials together to see if they can create a charge.

I hope that helps. Let me know if she finds a solution.

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## Summary

Hopefully, this reader feedback has helped provide information about Static Electricity issues.

## Resources and references

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### Websites

Static Electricity Resources

### Books

Top-rated books on Static Electricity

Top-rated books on Electrostatics

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