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Student 1 claims that all charged objects have excess charge existing on the surface the object.

Student 2 argues that only charged conductors have excess charge existing on the surface of the conductor.

Which student is correct and why?


Student 1 is correct. Conductors and insulators are only different with current electricity. They are the same with static electricity.


Student 1 is correct. All objects obtain their charge from some outside source, so the charge on any object must exist on the object’s surface.


Student 2 is correct. Electrons can move in conductors and cannot move in insulators. The conductor system is only in equilibrium when excess charge moves to the surface.


Student 2 is correct. However, charge will only exist on the surface of hollow conductors. In a solid conductor charge can be distributed all throughout.

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