## Gauss's Law |

The CRUX OF ITS APPLICATION is the choice of ** gaussian surface**.
Keep in mind that this is not a surface of the charge distribution itself, but rather an imaginary surface constructed for application of Gauss's law.

To make Gauss's law tractable:

- All sections of the gaussian surface should be chosen so that they are either parallel or perpendicular to
**E**. For this we need to have already determined the direction of**E**everywhere on the surface by symmetry arguments. - |
**E**| should be constant on each surface. Again, this requires sufficient symmetry to "see" the constancy of field strength.

Step 1: | Understand the geometry |

Step 2: | Understand the symmetry |

Step 3: | Construct the gaussian surface |

Step 4: | Examine the gaussian surface |

Step 5: | Evaluate the electric flux through the gaussian surface |

Step 6: | Evaluate the charge enclosed by the gaussian surface |

Step 7: | Apply Gauss's law for the result! |

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Last updated March 10, 1998.

Copyright George Watson, Univ. of Delaware, 1997.