Two concentric metal spherical shells, of radius a and b, respectively, are separated by weakly conducting material of conductivity Ï (Fig. 7.4a).
(a) If they are maintained at a potential difference V, what current flows from one to the other?
(b) What is the resistance between the shells?
(c) Notice that if b >> a the outer radius (b) is irrelevant. How do you account for that? Exploit this observation to determine the current flowing between two metal spheres, each of radiu, a, immersed deep in the sea and held quite far apart (Fig. 7.4b), if the potential difference between them is V. (This arrangement can be used to measure the conductivity of sea water.