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Conceptually, Maxwell's equations describe how electric charges and electric currents act as sources for the electric and magnetic fields and how they affect each other. (Mathematical descriptions are below). Using vector calculus there are four equations. Two describe how the fields vary in space due to sources (if any); electric fields emanating from electric charges in Gauss's law, and magnetic fields as closed field lines (not due to magnetic monopoles) in Gauss's law for magnetism. The other two describe how the fields 'circulate' around their respective sources; the magnetic field 'circulates' around electric currents and time varying electric fields in Ampère's law with Maxwell's correction, while the electric field 'circulates' around time varying magnetic fields inFaraday's law. [edit]Gauss's

law

Gauss's law describes the relationship between a static electric field and the electric charges that cause it: The static electric field points away from positive charges and towards negative charges. In the field line description, electric field lines begin only at positive electric charges and end only at negative electric charges. 'Counting' the number of field lines passing though a closed surface, therefore, yields the total charge (including bound charge due to polarization of material) enclosed by that surface divided by dielectricity of free space (the vacuum permittivity). More technically, it relates the electric flux through any hypothetical closed "Gaussian surface" to the enclosed electric charge.

Gauss's law for magnetism: magnetic field lines never begin nor end but form loops or extend to infinity as shown here with the magnetic field due to a ring of current.

[edit]Gauss's

law for magnetism

Gauss's law for magnetism states that there are no "magnetic charges" (also called magnetic monopoles), analogous to electric charges.[2] Instead, the magnetic field due to materials is generated by a configuration called a dipole. Magnetic dipoles are best represented as loops of current but resemble positive and negative 'magnetic charges', inseparably bound together, having no net 'magnetic charge'. In terms of field lines, this equation states that magnetic field lines neither begin nor end but make loops or extend to infinity and back. In other words, any magnetic field line that enters a given volume must somewhere exit that volume. Equivalent technical statements are that the sum total magnetic flux through any Gaussian surface is zero, or that the magnetic field is a solenoidal vector field. [edit]Faraday's

law

In a geomagnetic storm, a surge in the flux of charged particles temporarily alters Earth's magnetic field, which induces electric fields in Earth's atmosphere, thus causing surges in electrical power grids. Artist's rendition; sizes are not to scale.

Faraday's law describes how a time varying magnetic field creates ("induces") an electric field.[2] This dynamically induced electric field has closed field lines just as the magnetic field, if NOT superposed by a static (charge induced) electric field. This aspect of electromagnetic induction is the operating principle behind many electric generators: for example, a rotating bar magnet creates a changing magnetic field, which in turn generates an electric field in a nearby wire. (Note: there are two closely related equations which are called Faraday's law. The form used in Maxwell's equations is always valid but more restrictive than that originally formulated by Michael Faraday.)

The speed calculated for electromagnetic waves. light is one form of electromagnetic radiation (as are X-rays. The equations in this section are given in the convention used with SI units. See below for the formulation with Gaussian units. but also a changing electric field induces a magnetic field. Symbols in bold represent vector quantities. and symbols in italics represent scalar quantities. and others). Each corestores one bit of data.[2][3] Therefore. Other units commonly used are Gaussian units based on the cgs system. Ampère's law with Maxwell's correction states that magnetic fields can be generated in two ways: byelectrical current (this was the original "Ampère's law") and by changing electric fields (this was "Maxwell's correction"). radio waves. Maxwell understood the connection between electromagnetic waves and light in 1861. [note 1] exactly matches the speed of light. and Planck units(used in theoretical physics). which could be predicted from experiments on charges and currents. For a detailed description of the differences between the microscopic (total charge and current including material contributes or in air/vacuum)[note 2] and macros . This makes constants come out differently. The following equations are the conventional formulation of the Maxwell equations in terms of vector calculus using time dependent vector fields.[4] Lorentz–Heaviside units (used mainly in particle physics). Maxwell's correction to Ampère's law is particularly important: it shows that not only does a changing magnetic field induce an electric field. these equations allow self-sustaining "electromagnetic waves" to travel through empty space (see electromagnetic wave equation). indeed. thereby unifying the theories of electromagnetism and optics.[edit]Ampère's law with Maxwell's correction An Wang's magnetic core memory (1954) is an application of Ampère's law. Conventions differ with the unit systems because various definitions (and dimensions) are changed by absorbing dimensionfull factors like the speed of light c. The definitions of terms used in the two tables of equations are given in another table immediately following. [edit]Conventional formulation in SI units The precise formulation of the Maxwell equation depends on the precise definition of the quantities involved.

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