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Physical unit
Unit name Debye
Unit symbol
Physical quantity (s) Electric dipole moment
system Electrostatic CGS unit system , Gaussian CGS unit system
In CGS units
Named after Peter Debye
Derived from Franklin (unit) , centimeter

As Debye [ dəbɛi̯ə ] ( unit symbol  D ; by Peter Debye , the explorer of the dipole phenomena) refers to the CGS unit of the electric dipole moment in the gaussian system of units and in the electrostatic unit system (ESU) .

This unit is based on the CGS units Franklin (Fr) and Centimeter (cm) :

with for the Ångström .

For conversion into the SI unit for the electric dipole moment ( Coulomb  ·  meters , Coulombmeter) applies:

Since the use of the coulomb meter leads to very small numerical values ​​on atomic scales, the Debye is usually used.

In addition, the following approximation applies:


  • for the elementary charge .

The Debye is not a legal unit in metrology in Germany .