Create an electrophorus (an instrument for generating static electricity).
What to do:
1. Use pliers to remove the pen cartridge from inside the pen. This will be our handle.
2. Place the pie pan upside down on a table. Push a thumbtack down through the center of the pie pan. Turn the pan back over. The point of the thumbtack should be sticking up through the middle of the pan.
3. Coat the thumbtack point with glue. Push the pen body down onto the thumbtack point. Let the glue dry. You could use a pencil instead and press the eraser end down onto the thumbtack.
4. Rub the styrofoam plate with the wool sock for about 45 seconds. Place the plate upside down on the table. Using the pen handle that we just created, place the pie pan on top of the upside down sytrofoam plate. The pen should be sticking up.
5. Quickly touch the pie pan with your finger. It may produce a small shock. Remove the pie pan off of the styrofoam plate using the pen handle
6. Discharge the “charged” pie pan by touching it with your finger. Another shock! (Or you could get your mom or dad to touch it – just don’t tell them we suggested it.) You can recharge the pan by starting at step 4 and carry your zapper contraption by the insulated handle.
Rubbing the styrofoam pan with the wool attracts electrons and creates a negative charge. When you place the pie pan on top of the styrofoam, the electrons on the plate repel the electrons on the pan. When you touch the pan, the electrons travel off and onto your finger, creating a spark. Now the pan has a positive charge created by induction. Try bringing it around other objects that are a source of electrons.
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