Derive the expression for the torque acting on an electric dipole, when it is held in a uniform electric field. Identify the orientation of the dipole in the electric field, in which it attains a stable equilibrium.

 

 

Answers (1)

Let us consider, the force on either charge be ;-

F=qE

we know, the magnitude of torque is given as ;

\tau = either force \times perpendicular distance between them

therefore,

\tau =qE\; 2a\; \sin \theta  

Such that, p=2qa (From the definition of dipole moment)

 \tau =PE\sin \theta

\tau =p\times E

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