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What Does Electromagnetism Mean?

Electromagnetism is a branch of physics which deals with
study of electromagnetic force. Being one of four fundamental interactions – along with gravitation, weak interaction and strong interaction – electromagnetic
force happens between electrically charged particles. Discovered in the 19th century, electromagnetism has extensive usage in todays’ physics.


Techopedia Explains Electromagnetism

Electromagnetism can be considered as the science of electromagnetic
fields. When an electric current passes through a conductor, a circular
electromagnetic field is created around it. The direction of the current
decides the direction of rotation of the created magnetic field. The current
strength as well as length of the conductor decides the force of electromagnetism
developed. Change of the magnetic
field can produce electricity.

Electromagnetism is governed by the basic law known as “Faraday’s law of induction.” According to Faraday’s law, the induced electromotive force in any closed circuit is equal to the negative of the time rate of change of the magnetic flux enclosed by the circuit. The law shows how a magnetic field interacts with an electric circuit. Electromagnetism helped in establishing the relationship between electricity and magnetism. The electromagnetism created can be turned on and off by cutting off the electrical current flowing in the conductor. Electromagnetism also causes radiation, which shows up in an electromagnetic spectrum. Electromagnetism has been extended to quantum physics. It has helped in findings related to the nature of light and in the discovery of the electromagnetic spectrum. Electromagnetism is also used in devices such as speakers, solenoids, electric motors and magnetic disks.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.