The Strength of Static Electricity
Purpose: Since the discovery of it's existance
by Benjamin Franklin, static electricity has long intrigued the world of
physics. This week, Scientific AmeriKen will explore the strength
of static electricity to see whether it has the strength to kill.
Hypothesis: Because the duration of the shock
is very short, it is the hypothesis of this experiment that ordinary static
electricity cannot kill.
Equipment: One lyndon jar
and induction charging kit, one bug, aluminum foil, rubber gloves or
some other non-conducting material to protect hands, pen and paper.
Procedure: The first step is to charge
the lyndon jar by electric induction to about 100 or so cycles. While
using the rubber gloves, attached a piece of aluminum foil to the bug,
leaving two seperate ends. Attach one end of the aluminum foil to the bottom
of the lyndon jar and then touch the other end of the foil to the top of
the lyndon jar. Observe any results.
Insect used was a garden snail
Conclusions: It was apparant that the hypothesis
was proven true, and the snail was not killed as a result to exposer to
static electricity. Though 100 cycles of stored energy is a very sizeable
amount (experimentally shown to light a florescent tube fora short while),
it is questionable as to whether or not cranking up the juice would create
enough power to kill something. Though further research with higher voltages
and ants is unlikely, it should be noted that static electricity is relatively
|Status of the Bug
||Snail was alive. Initial responses in the snail
were slow, however, after some time, the snail moved at a normal slow pace.
There was no obvious physical damage to the snail, except for excess bubbling,
which had resulted due to some chemicals on the glove.