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## Learning Objectives

- To understand the nature of the common continuous charge distributions with which we deal: lines of charge, planes of charge, and spheres of charge.
- To be able calculate the electric field at every point in space given a continuous distribution of charge.

## Preparation

### Course Notes

Read through the course notes. The course note files may also contain links to associated animations or interactive simulations.

Read sections 2.9 through 2.14:

Coulomb's Law (PDF)

## Learning Activities

### Guided Activities

Read through the class slides. They explain all of the concepts from the module.

Slides (PDF)

### Self-Assessment

Once you have reviewed all the materials, try the Challenge Problems.

### Challenge Problems

Challenge Problems (PDF)

Solutions (PDF)

## Problem Solving Help

Watch the Problem Solving Help videos for insights on how to approach and solve problems related to the concepts in this module.

### Problem 1: Calculating the Potential of a Semi-circular Rod by Integration

We distribute a total charge *Q* uniformly on a thin insulating rod bent into a semi-circular of radius *a*. Calculate the electric field at the center of radius of the semi-circle. Calculate the electric field at the same point.

### Problem 2: The Electric Field of a Line of Charge

A long straight wire carries a charge per unit length *λ*. What is the electric field a distance *d* from the wire? Find this field in two different ways, first using Coulomb’s Law, and then using Gauss’s Law.

## Related Visualizations

The visualizations linked below are related to the concepts covered in this module.

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