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Qu: what would a positive charge "want" to do?
for (1) and (2) it is obvious, move away from + toward -.
but for (3) .... and in each case ... the charge "wants" to lose energy.
or you can see potentials as relative and, in the case of (3), add 400V to each side
or go back to the fundamental definitions ... which will involve the dissipation of energy
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an electrostatic field 'points' from high to low potential in a way consistent with Laplace's equation (which is a steady-state special case of Maxwell's equations), so in (b) we're looking for an arrangement where the potential on the left is higher than that on the right
inhomogeneous Laplace equation I meant (better known as Poisson equation)
So wait, so for part b. I know that the KE is arranged as alpha, proton, electron. But why would the electron be the other way around? electron, proton, alpha for the greatest to least velocity.