(named for French chemist Charles-Augustin de Coulomb (1736-1806), who devised a method of measuring electrical quantity)
2. Reactions between atomic nuclei are inhibited by the need for the nuclei to overcome the repulsive force that acts between any pair of similarly charged particles.
At high temperatures, nuclei move sufficiently fast to be able to overcome the Coulomb barrier.
The greater the nuclear charge, the higher is the temperature that is required for nuclear reactions to occur.
2. Nuclear excitation caused by the time-dependent long-ranged electric field acting between colliding nuclei.
Theoretically, the Coulomb force between the positively charged colliding nuclei is well understood, and the interaction is calculable exactly.
Coulomb excitation usually is the dominant reaction in nuclear scattering, and even occurs at low bombarding energies where the separation of the nuclei is sufficiently large that the short-ranged nuclear force does not act.
2. A process in which a molecule moving with high velocity strikes a solid and the electrons that bond the molecule are torn off rapidly in violent collisions with the electrons of the solid; as a result, the molecule is suddenly transformed into a cluster of charged atomic constituents that then separate under the influence of their mutual Coulomb repulsion.
Coulomb explosions are most commonly studied using a particle accelerator, normally employed in nuclear physics research, to produce a beam of fast molecular ions that are directed onto a solid-foil target.
2. The electrostatic field around a charged particle or object.
2. A scalar point function equal to the work per unit charge done against the Coulomb force in transferring a particle bearing an infinitesimal positive charge from infinity to a point in the field of a specific charge distribution.
2. A collision of two charged particles in which the Coulomb force is the dominant interaction.
- Like charges repel each other and unlike charges attract each other.
- The attraction or repulsion acts along the line between the two charges.
- The size of the force varies inversely as the square of the distance between the two charges.
- The size of the force is proportional to the value of each charge.
If the bodies are oppositely charged, one positive and one negative, they are attracted toward one another; if the bodies are similarly charged, both positive or both negative, the force between them is repulsive.
Coulomb's law applies only when the charged bodies are much smaller than the distance separating them and therefore can be treated approximately as point charges.