Magnetic and Electric Fields
Name: Or F.
Are the Magnetic Field and the Electric Field are the same
and the only difference between them is the
reference axis ?
Magnetic and electric field are two DIFFERENT parts of electromagnetism. It
is possible to have either one without the other. It is when part of
radiation traveling through space that the electric and magnetic fields are
Electric field produces a force proportional to the electric charge within
the field. Electic force is in the direction fo the electic field.
Magnetic force is proportional to electric charge AND the speed of the
charge. The magnetic force is perpendicular to both magnetic field AND
direction of motion. A charge sitting still will be affected by an electric
field. It will not be affected by a magnetic field. A wire with current
flowing through it will not be significantly affected by an electric field.
The total charge in the wire is zero: same amount of positive and negative.
Since only the negative charge is moving in the wire, it will be very much
affected by a magnetic field.
Dr. Ken Mellendorf
Illinois Central College
Magnetic and electric fields are not the same, although in electromagnetic
radiation (light, U.V., infrared etc.) they oscillate at right angles to one
another. However, it is possible to have a magnetic field (e.g. a permanent
magnet) without an electric field, of an electric field (e.g. static
electricity) without a magnetic field.
Do magnetic and electric fields interact? YES! The interact according the
the principles laid out in Maxwell's equations governing those fields.
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Update: June 2012