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Physics 1251 Midterm 1 Show Work Problem 2

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For the second show work problem on the first midterm, how do you know that the capacitors are in parallel and not in series?  To me, they look like they are in series.

I would appreciate if you could give me a general rule to know, for any situation, when components are in parallel or in series.

Thank you.
asked Dec 11, 2014 in Intro College Physics by anonymous

1 Answer

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Best answer
In this case, the two capacitors have their positive and negative terminals connected together and have the same voltage across them. Therefore this is a parallel connection.

For series connections, the positive side of one capacitor is connected to the negative side of another. And the voltages across the different capacitors can be anything depending on the set up of the problem.
answered Dec 13, 2014 by PhysicsDude (21,750 points)
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