# Electric Dipole, Definition, Magnitude, Direction, and Physical Significance

Safalta Expert Published by: Noor Fatima Updated Wed, 19 Oct 2022 01:51 PM IST

## Highlights

Here is important and relevant information regarding Class 12 Physics Concept of Electric Dipole? Read the article to learn about the same.

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Electric Dipole: A pair of equal and opposite electric charges is divided, particularly by a little distance. For instance, a body, such as an atom, or a system, like a molecule, has such charges. In this blog, we will discuss Electric dipole and its potential. An electric dipole is referred to as a pair of opposite charges “q” and “-q” detached by a distance “d”. The direction of electric dipoles in space is always from negative charges “-q” to positive charge“q” on its own. The midpoint “q” and “-q” is referred to as the center of the dipole.

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The easiest instance of an electric dipole is a couple of electric charges of two contrary signs and an equal scale diverged by distance.

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## What is Electric Dipole?

An electric dipole is referred to as a pair of opposite charges “q” and “-q” detached by a distance “d”. The direction of electric dipoles in space is always from negative charges “-q” to positive charge“q” on its own.

The midpoint “q” and “-q” is referred to as the center of the dipole. The easiest instance of an electric dipole is a couple of electric charges of two contrary signs and an equal scale diverged by distance.

## Visualizing Electric Dipole

Assume there are two charges of equal magnitude “q” divided by a distance, “d”. Let the first charge be negative and the second charge is positive. This blend can be referred to as an electric dipole.

An electric dipole is expressed by the symbol “p”. We are well aware that an electric dipole is the product of the magnitude of the charge multiplied by the distance between them. This can be mathematically expressed as follow -

The magnitude of the electric dipole is expressed as

Electric Charges and Static Electricity
Electric Charge
Conductors and Insulators
Basic Properties of Electric Charge
Forces between Multiple Charges
Charging by Induction
Magnetic effect of Electric Current
Electric Flux

## The direction of Electric Dipole Movement

The electric dipole movement is illustrated in a direction, which is from a negative to a positive charge. It is a vector quantity. It is significant to remember that this principle of direction is only followed in Physics. In the field of Chemistry, the convention change is taken to be opposite viz from positive charge to negative charge. The line along the direction of an electric dipole is referred to as the axis of the dipole.

## Electric potential due to Dipole (V)

Assume that are two charges, “-q” kept at A and “+q” is kept at B, diverged by the distance “d”, making a dipole. Assume the midpoint change of AB is “O”.
The Electric potential due to a dipole at any point P, like that OP= r will be

Case 1: If θ = 90°

Case 2: If θ = 0°

## Physical Significance of Dipole

Electric Dipole is not only well-known in the field of electrostatics but also in Chemistry. In most molecules, the midpoint of positive and negative charges overlap at a similar point due to which the distance between two charges is zero. Carbon dioxide and methane belong to the category of zero dipole moment. These kinds of molecules are called nonpolar molecules.

The molecule whose permanent dipole moments as the midpoint of positive and negative charges don’t concur are known as polar molecules.
Candidates can refer to the information given above about Electric Dipole.

Coulomb-metre

## What is the torque on the dipole minimum?

The torque on a dipole is minimum when the dipole is lateral to the field.

## What is the torque on the dipole maximum?

The torque on a dipole is maximum when the dipole is vertical to the field.

## What is the total force acting total dipole kept in a regular electric field?

The forces on the two charges having the dipole are equal and opposite. Therefore, the total force is zero.

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