Electrostatic potential is characteristic of electric field associated with a given charge configuration. To make this characteristic independent of the magnitude of test charge, we define
Electric potential difference between two points B and A in an electrostatic field as the amount of work done in carrying unit positive test charge from A to B (against the electrostatic force of the field) along any path between the two points. If VA and VB are the electrostatic potentials at A and B respectively then from eq. (2)
?V = VB – VA = UB – UA/q = WAB/q
?V = WAB/q = [ML2T-2] / [AT] = [M1 L2 T-3 A-1]
SI unit of potential difference is volt.
1 V = 1J / IC = 1JC-1 = 1 Nm C-1
Thus potential difference between any two points in an electrostatic field is said to be one vol, when one joule of work is done in moving a positive charge of one coulomb from one point to the other against the electrostatic force of the field.
As explained already in case of electrostatic potential energy it is potential difference between any two points which is physically significant … and not the actual value of potential at a point.
We can, however, define electric potential at a point by choosing the potential to be zero at infinity if we take point A at infinity VA= 0. From
VB = W ∞B / q
Hence, electrostatic potential at any point in a region of electrostatic field is the minimum work done in carrying a unit positive charge (without acceleration) form infinity to that point.
Obviously, electrostatic potential at a point is a scalar quantity. Its SI unit is volt.
Electric potential at a point is said to be one volt, when one joule of work is done in moving one coulomb of positive charge from infinity to that point against the electrostatic force of the field.
As work done = charge x potential
W = (200 x 10-6) x 10 = 2 x 10-3 Js
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