January 9 is Static Electricity Day a day to honor this unexpected, mostly unpleasant, and sometimes hair rising phenomenon.
Static electricity occurs due to an accumulation of positive electric charges on an object's surface.
It is called static because the charge stays on the surface until it comes into contact with another surface with a negative charge.
Static electricity can be created by rubbing an object against another. Some materials like wool and glass are much more likely to have static electricity. Dry human skin and hair also accumulate electric charges. This is why people tend to experience shocks when they touch doorknobs or anything made of metal during the winter time.
The Triboelectric Series is a list of materials that are ranked by their ability to accumulate positive and negative charges.
This shocking holiday is also sometimes called National Static Electricity Day in the United States.
How to Celebrate?
Learn more about what causes static electricity.
Conduct experiments with the kids in your life to show them the causes and effects of static electricity.
Learn how to avoid static during the winter months.
Did You Know…
…that lightning is a natural example of when sparks are discharged due to the buildup of static electricity?