Question Video: Calculating the Potential Difference across the Terminals of a Cell | Nagwa Question Video: Calculating the Potential Difference across the Terminals of a Cell | Nagwa

Question Video: Calculating the Potential Difference across the Terminals of a Cell Science • Third Year of Preparatory School

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A cell does 1 joule of work to separate 1 coulomb of charge. What potential difference does this create across the terminals of the cell?

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Video Transcript

A cell does one joule of work to separate one coulomb of charge. What potential difference does this create across the terminals of the cell?

Here, we are asked to find the potential difference across the terminals of a cell when we are given the amount of work the cell does in joules and the amount of charge it separates in coulombs.

First, let’s take a look at the equation for potential difference. The potential difference across the cell is equal to the amount of work the cell does to separate the charge divided by the amount of charge that was separated. We can also write this as 𝑉 equals 𝑊 divided by 𝑄, where 𝑉 is the potential difference, 𝑊 is the work done, and 𝑄 is the charge separated.

In this question, we are told that the cell separates one coulomb of charge, meaning that 𝑄 equals one coulomb. We are also told that one joule of work is done, so 𝑊 equals one joule. If we substitute these values into our formula, we find that the potential difference 𝑉 is equal to one joule divided by one coulomb. This gives us a potential difference of one joule per coulomb.

Let’s look at these units. Recall that potential difference is usually measured in units of volts. One volt is equal to one joule per coulomb. This means that the potential difference we have just calculated, one joule per coulomb, is equal to one volt. So the potential difference across the terminals of the cell is equal to one volt. This is our final answer.

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