Electric field strength of charged conducting balls and the breakdown of the air gap between them
Department of Physics, Korolenko Glazov State Pedagogical Institute, ul. Pervomaiskaya 25, Glazov, 427600, Russian Federation
Field amplification factors at the surfaces of two charged conducting balls are calculated numerically. It is shown that as the balls are brought closer together, except when their potentials are equal, the amplification factors go to infinity, and in the case of like-charged balls the field at the surface of one of them changes sign. Breakdown field strengths for the air gap between balls of a different diameter are calculated using the experimental data of other authors as the base. The results suggest that the minimum breakdown field strength is 26 kV cm-1 . The author’s earlier results on the interaction force between the balls are revised.