Conductors and Insulators

In this article we will learn about the conductors as well as the insulators. The Conductors are the materials we can say that permit the flow of electrons freely from particle to particle inside any object.


An object which is made up of a conducting material will permit the flow of charge to be transferred across the entire surface of the object inside which they are. If the transfer of charge to the object at a given location which charge is quickly distributed across the entire object's surface.


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The distribution of the charge is the result of movement of the electron inside it. Since the conductors are the conductive material so they  allow electrons to be transported from particle to particle.

An object which is  charged will always distribute its charge until the process of overall force repulsive which is between excess electrons is minimized.

If a conductor which is charged is touched to some other object, then the conductor can even transfer its charge to that object as well. 

The transfer of charge which takes place between objects occurs more readily if the second object is also made of a material which is conducting in nature. 

The Conductors mainly allow charge transfer through the movement which is free for electrons.

In contrast to the material which is conductive the insulators are materials that impede the electrons free flow from atom to atom or from molecule to molecule. 

The particles of the material of an insulator do not permit the free flow of electrons, that is we can say that the subsequent charge is seldom distributed evenly across the insulator's surface.


The insulators are not useful for transferring charge. We can say that they do serve a role which is very critical in electrostatic experiments and demonstrations. The material which is conductive or objects which is conductive are often mounted upon insulating objects.


This arrangement which we have discussed also allows for a student or even the teacher to manipulate an object conducting without touching it.

The insulator basically serves as a moving handle for the conductor around on top of a lab table.

If experiments of charging are performed with pop aluminum cans, then the cans should be mounted on top as well as Styrofoam cups for better performance. The serve of the cups as insulators, is by the way preventing the pop cans from charge discharging. The cups also serve as a kind of handle when it becomes necessary to move the cans which are around on the table.


Conductors Definition Science Example

We take the examples of conductors including metals, and solutions of aqueous salts that are the ionic compounds dissolved in water in graphite, and the body of humans. If we take the examples of insulators including plastics objects, the Styrofoam and then the paper, glass, rubber and dry air; the materials division into the categories of insulators and of conductors is a somewhat division which is artificial.

It is more appropriate to think of the materials which are being placed somewhere along a continuum.

Those materials that are called as the super conductive which are known as superconductors that would be placed at one end and the least conductive materials. The best insulators would be placed at the other ends as well.

The metals which would be placed near the most conductive end and the glass as well would be placed on the opposite side of the continuum. 

The metals conductivity might be as much as a million trillion times greater than that of a glass.

Along we can say that the continuum of insulators and the conductors one might find the body of a human. Which is somewhere towards the conducting side of the middle. When the aquarius of the body is a charge which is static then it has a tendency to distribute that charge which is throughout the surface of the body.

The given size of the body of a human relative to the size of object is typically used in electrostatic experiments.

It would mainly require a large but abnormal quantity of excess charge before its notable effect. The effects of the charge which is excess on the body are often demonstrated by using the Van de Graaff generator.


When a student or a child places their hand upon the ball of static material then the excess charge from the ball is shared with the body of the human being. The conductor being, the charge which is excess charge could flow to the body of a human and spread throughout the surface of the body. We can say it even onto strands of hair. As the strand of individual hair becomes charged, they begin to repel each other. After looking to distance which is between themselves from their like-charged neighbors, we could note that the strands of hair begin to rise upward and outward direction this is a truly hair-raising experience.


Many of them are familiar with the humidity impact that can have upon charge which is of static buildups. In the months of winter it tends to be the driest months of the year with level up humidity in the air dropping to lower values.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1. Do Conductors get Attracted to Insulators?

Ans: Since we have seen that the rod remains positively charged, and then the electrons conduction takes place which themselves are negatively charged in nature, are attracted by flowing toward the side of the insulator to the near side of the conductor.

Q2. What Types of Materials Allow Electrons to Flow Freely?

Ans: The flow of electricity or we can say the electrons are called current. Generally, the metals are very good conductors that means they let the flow of current easily. Materials that do not let flow the current easily are known as insulators. Most of the nonmetal materials such as plastic or wood and at times rubber are insulator in nature.

Q3. What do Insulators and Conductors Give Examples?

Ans: The examples of conductors metals are the aqueous solutions of salts that are the ionic compounds which are dissolved in water, the pencil graphite, and the body of a human being. The examples of insulators are styrofoam,  plastics, paper, glass, rubber, and dry air.

Q4. Are Insulators Negative or Positive in Nature?

Ans: The electrons which are on the conductors will move from the conductors towards the insulator. This will leave the system a bit positively charged in nature because the charge has to be conserved and then if the insulator was positive in charge and the conductor was neutral in nature then the end result is that they have to be positive to form equilibrium.