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Observation of Force and Torque on a Current Loop using a Simplified Electric Motor

Observation of Force and Torque on a Current Loop using a Simplified Electric Motor



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Physics 72.1 (Laboratory Class) Peer Review Experiment First Draft
Physics 72.1 (Laboratory Class) Peer Review Experiment First Draft

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Published by: frances leana capellan on Aug 14, 2008
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Observation of Force and Torque in a Current LoopUsing a Simplified Electric Motor
Plaridel, Neopet, ChuvaneshcaPhysics 72.1 FDE2 National Institute of Physics, University of the PhilippinesDiliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines
I. Abstract
The group replicated a DC motor to be ableto observe the force and torque present on acurrent loop. The motor set-up use permanent bar magnet on a DC Battery (size D) coiled fifteen times with a magnetic wire.This paper discusses our observations on howelectricity and magnetism concepts apply onan actual motor through the aid of a simplified motor design.
 At the end of the activity, the group was ableto induce a net torque effect in the coil. Thecoil either oscillates or rotates depending onthe strength of the current and/or the magnet.With the aid of known theories on the presenceof force and torque on a current loop, the group was able to observe how a motor works.
II. Introduction
A machine that converts electrical energyinto mechanical energy is called a
. Thedesign of the galvanometer that was used onclass is very similar to the design of an electricmotor. If the design of a galvanometer wasmodified slightly, so that deflection makes acomplete rather than a partial rotation, an
electric motor 
is produced. The principaldifference between a galvanometer and amotor is that for the latter, the current is madeto change direction every time the coil makes ahalf rotation. After being forced to turn onerotation, the coil continues in motion just intime for the current to reverse, whereuponinstead of the coil reversing direction, it isforced to continue another half rotation in thesame direction. This happens in cyclic fashionto produce continuous rotation, which has been harnessed to run clocks, operate gadgets,and lift heavy loads.The group aims to be able to create animprovised and fully functional DC motor.The principal goal is to be able to identify thefactors that determine how the coiled wirefrom our improvised set-up rotates in a DCmotor. The direction of the magnetic field andthe current flow on a conductor will also beobserved and analyzed with the aid of theknown governing concepts of electricity andmagnetism.
III. Methodology
To be able to construct a simplified model of an electric motor, the following materials areneeded: a DC Battery (size D), electrical tape,copper/magnetic wire, a permanent bar magnet(and a small circular magnet if preferred), two
large safety pins, sandpaper (for smootheningout the edges of the safety pins), scissors, longnose pliers, and mechanical pliers.
Figure 1. Coiling the wire on the battery
The wire was coiled fifteen times around the battery and secured to prevent relapse.(Winding the coil more than fifteen times onthe battery will affect the magnitude of themagnetic field strength.) Excess wire was placed and stripped at the start and end pointsof the coil to serve as rod or shaft to suspendthe coil on the support pillar provided by thesafety pins. (An alternative set-up replaces thewire with a small circular magnet.) Once thecurrent was established, the circuit wasexposed to the magnetic field.
Figure 2An Alternative Improvised DC Motor Set-upwith a Magnet placed on the battery
IV. Results and Discussion
As noted, the principal difference between agalvanometer and a motor is that for the latter,the current is made to change direction everytime the coil makes a half rotation.(1)Equation 1 defines the magnitude of a force present on a circular loop, where
is themagnitude of 
present on a current loop,
is the amount of 
is the
isthe strength of 
magnetic field 
.For our DC motor set-up, the sum of theforces present is zero. This is because each of the forces present on the opposite sides of thewire cancels out thus leaving no net force onthe system.In theory, a
magnetic dipole moment 
, or simply a
magnetic moment 
, causes the rotationon a current loop once exposed to a magneticfield.(2)
Equation 2 expresses the
magnetic moment 
as the product of the
(I) and the
(A).The concept of a magnetic dipole moment isessential in understanding why a current looprotates once exposed to a magnetic field. Amagnetic dipole moment quantifies thecontribution of the system's internalmagnetism to the external dipolar magneticfield produced by the system.(3)Equation 3 describes the
induced on acircular loop as the magnetic dipole moment(greek letter 
) cross the
magnetic field 
strength (B).

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