Attention: You are using an outdated browser, device or you do not have the latest version of JavaScript downloaded and so this website may not work as expected. Please download the latest software or switch device to avoid further issues.

News > Student News > Experimenting with a new Van de Graaff generator!

Experimenting with a new Van de Graaff generator!

The NCW Physics department have got a new Van de Graaff generator, and have been busy investigating the effects of charging a student!
30 Nov 2021
Written by Amy Woodward
Student News
Female student holding on with both hands to the Van de Graaff generator!
Female student holding on with both hands to the Van de Graaff generator!

The NCW Physics department have got a new Van de Graaff generator, and have been busy investigating the effects of charging a student!

A Van de Graaff generator is an electrostatic generator which removes electrons from the dome, moves them along a belt and takes them to the bottom of the generator. The positive charges left are spread out on the surface of the sphere.

Mr Stark charged up the Van de Graaff by spinning a wheel which turned the belt and transferred the electrons away from the metal dome at the top, making it positively charged. We could soon hear and then see huge sparks between the big globe and onto the discharge ball! We made a particle accelerator.

Sixth Form student Madiha was very excited to have a go. She stood on a plastic tray while holding onto the globe and Mr Stark charged it up again. This time the charge transferred to her – don’t worry, that plastic tray she was standing on would definitely prevent any mishaps! The generator can charge upto 200,000V, but only a tiny current can flow from the dome so it is totally safe.

When the Van de Graaff generator starts charging, it transfers the charge to the person who is touching it. Since Madiha’s hair strands were getting charged to the same voltage, they tried to repel each other. This is why her hair started moving.

Mr Stark’s Science Club on a Friday lunchtime have also been investigating the new Van de Graaff.

It’s definitely a “positive” success!

Similar stories

Year 11 student Louisa has been busy in Chemistry looking at unknown compounds and how they can be identified through a series of tests. More...

Charlie with his First Class Award!

After completing his A-Levels in Spanish, English, Drama and Theatre Studies at NCW, Charlie went on to study BA (Hons) … More...

Amy with her peers posing for a photo outside of Gloucestershire Cathedral

Former student Amy left NCW in June 2022 and has just started her first year at the University of Gloucestershire studyi… More...

The completed tactile wall hanging, consisting of images of headphones, musical instruments, animals

Before the end of last term, the NCW Art Department were invited by VI charity VICTA to take part in an exciting, intern… More...

NCW students are stood with students of Mary Hare School, and Master Margaret Fitzsimons

In May, two senior students had the great honour of attending the May Court Dinner of the Worshipful Company of Lightmon… More...

Most read

Mr stark holding his award up next to someone from the Worcester news

Physics guru and Head of Science, Mr Stark, has been recognised and awarded as Teacher of the Year at the Worcestershire Education Awards 2022! More...

Year 11 student Louisa has been busy in Chemistry looking at unknown compounds and how they can be identified through a series of tests. More...

Amy with her peers posing for a photo outside of Gloucestershire Cathedral

Former student Amy left NCW in June 2022 and has just started her first year at the University of Gloucestershire studying Journalism. More...

Have your say

 
This website is powered by
ToucanTech