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MCAT Question A Day - 8/30/13 - Answer!

Two point charges, A and B, are separated by 10 meters. If the distance between them is reduced to 5.0 meters, the force exerted on each

A.  decreases to half its original value.
B.  increases to twice its original value.
C.  decreases to one quarter of its original value.
D.  increases to four times its original value.

The correct answer is (D). From Coulomb’s law, F = k(qAqB)/r2, force is inversely proportional to the square of the distance separating the points. Decreasing the distance to half its original value means the force quadruples.

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