Talk:Elementary charge

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Physics (Rated C-class, Top-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Physics, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Physics on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Top  This article has been rated as Top-importance on the project's importance scale.

Comments by WFPM[edit]

If the two fundamental entities existing in the universe are energy and matter, and they are both positive entities, and if an elementary charge is capable of motivating a physical activity of these entities; then how is it that say two negative electrical charges can first change a one charge positive energy activity in one direction into a condition of nonactivity and then secondly into a one charge positive energy activity in the opposite direction?WFPM (talk) 18:28, 17 February 2010 (UTC)

The Milliken and other experiments established that a small particle such as an oil drop could be experimentally determined to have a measurable quantity of reactivity to counteracting gravity and electrostatic force fields that could be quantitatively determined to be proportional to a value of e/m, where the e value is the reactivity to the electrostatic field and the m value is the reactivity to the gravitational force field. This could be refined to include the monitoring of a constant m value particle in an en electrostatic field and determining the minimum incremental values of the electrostatic e value that were noted to occur to the experimental oil drop. These experiments resulted in the establishment of a minimum incremental electrostatic charge value that could occur to a drop, which was assumed to be that contained by a particle named the electron.

So if a particle is falling and acquiring energy from the gravitational field, it can be slowed and even stopped and reversed by an increase in the electrostatic field? But in that case the electrostatic field would have to be the supplier of the energy to the particle. So the e value of the electrostatic field has to be associated with a source of energy sufficient to power the counteracting field.WFPM (talk) 20:46, 17 February 2010 (UTC)

There is no theory on this page, is there even any theory? It would be good to say here if the whole thing is unexplained. I think there's something about the existence of even a single monopole implying quantisation of charge. Maybe the fact that irreps of U(1) can only have integer 'charge' is relevant, I dunno. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:17, 10 October 2010 (UTC)


Elementary charge
Definition: Charge of a proton
Symbol: e
Value in Coulombs:     1.602176487(40)×10-19 C
Elementary charge
Unit system SI, natural units
Unit of electric charge
Symbol e 
Unit conversions
1 e in ... ... is equal to ...
   coulomb    1.602176487(40)-19
   statcoulomb    4.80320427(12)-10

I believe that my box (top) has more relevant information, is more concise, and most importantly is much much easier for a reader to understand. (Entries like "standard", "quantity", "1 e =", etc. are confusing, I had to read the template multiple times to understand what was going on, and I'm an expert.) Sure, it's nice to have a similar and consistent infobox in multiple articles, but it's not a crucial priority. What is a crucial priority is having articles that present information as clearly and successfully as possible. Therefore we should judge the boxes on their own merits, and not automatically prefer the second one because it follows a previously-existing template while the first one does not.

See WP:Disinfobox for a bitter and cynical take on this topic. :-) --Steve (talk) 22:01, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

While I agree that the "official" box is confusing, I have to say that your box here is not much better:

  • it should state somewhere that it is a unit info box
  • unit symbols are not in italic, only quantities are
  • it does not mention the system of units it belongs to
  • it does not mention what "kind of quantity" it is used for
  • it could mention if it is a base unit or a derived unit
  • it should recognize that some units are used in several systems of units
  • it seems to be a "fundamental constant infobox" rather than a "unit infobox"

For those reasons I suggest that 1) we have both infoboxes, since e is both, a fundamental constant as well as a unit, 2) you continue your work on a better "official" unit infobox. I do think it would be useful to have consistent unit infoboxes. Kehrli (talk) 21:38, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

OK I should clarify: My proposal is not a "unit infobox", it's a "just plain infobox" intended for the top of the article. :-) I suppose it's OK to also have a "unit infobox" somewhere in the article, but I think the box should be labeled at the top: e as a unit of charge. Otherwise people would naturally assume it's a box about e in general, e the physical constant.
I don't think it's actually necessary to have a "unit infobox" at all, but I'm not really opposed as long as the title is changed. I'm putting it in for now... :-) --Steve (talk) 22:33, 26 October 2010 (UTC)
Again, I agree with you on most accounts. A unit infobox should definitely be labeled as such. I also think that the property fundamental constant is more important that the property unit. I still think that it might be useful to have a standardized infobox for units. This will increase the consistency of Wikipedia and will also assure that the terminology is in line with official metrology standards. Unfortunately the current unit infobox does a poor job in this respect. Kehrli (talk) 08:39, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

different values for the elementary charge!!![edit]

There seem to be different values. Only the last 3 digits differ: The article about Coulomb, the alternative infobox on the talk page and my calculator say, that the elementary charge is 1.602176487 * 10^{19} My formula sheet, and the current wikipedia article say its 1.602176565 * 10^{19}. And my stupid textbook says 1.6 * 10 ^ {19} which is just plain dumb ...

Elementary Charge, Absolute Value of Electron Charge[edit]

It is not correct when this page says that the elementary charge is defined as the charge of a proton. It is defined as the absolute value of the electron charge. The absolute value of electron charge is equal to the charge of a proton, however that is not how it is defined, and possibly in the future when more accurate measurements are made the absolute value of electron charge may end up being slightly different to the proton charge, and then it would not be equal to it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:26, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

Sometimes "q" instead of "e"[edit]

The symbol is sometimes "q" instead of "e". See Boltzmann_constant#Role_in_semiconductor_physics:_the_thermal_voltage. This should be mentioned. Andries (talk) 12:06, 20 April 2014 (UTC)