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Induced current in a wire

Sal determines the current and EMF induced in a wire pulled through a magnetic field. Created by Sal Khan.

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  • piceratops ultimate style avatar for user Aditya Addepalli
    What is the difference using slip rings in AC generator and split rings in DC motor?
    It's not exactly related, but I find it very confusing.
    (14 votes)
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    • starky tree style avatar for user Sakura Nakada
      In a DC motor you have to use split rings, otherwise it's not a DC motor but another type of motor. Likewise, in an AC generator you have to use slip rings, because then it wouldn't be called an AC generator. The split rings in a DC motor allow the electrical source to be in contact with the coil/loop so that electrical current can flow through it as it turns within the magnetic field. The split rings allow the current to flow in one direction in the loop due to a gap (hence the name 'split rings') which allows the arms of the loop not to get twisted and intertwined, and also so that the current in the loop doesn't change direction every half cycle, because then the loop wouldn't rotate at all (the source of the current is DC). In the AC generator mechanical energy is converted to electrical energy. Because of the rotational motion of the coil/loop within the magnetic field, the current in the loop changes direction every half cycle (use Fleming's Right Hand Rule) - the slip rings simply make sure that the same arm of the coil is connected to the same terminal of the external electric circuit so that the current can be used to, say, light a light bulb. This generates an Alternating Current (AC). Hope this helps.
      (41 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user chris
    I have heard from my professors that a magnetic field cannot do work. Can someone explain?
    (13 votes)
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    • male robot hal style avatar for user Charles LaCour
      Not 100% correct. Magnetic, electric and even gravitational fields are conservative fields. This means that regardless of the path you take through the field if you start and end at the same place in the field the difference in energy, potential and total work is 0.

      Using gravity as an example if you have water at the top of a cliff and drop it on a turbine it will spin the turbine and you can get work out of it. This is only half of the story, how did the water get to a higher potential? Work was done on it to lift it up to a higher potential. So if you look at the whole cycle without any energy losses you would have exactly 0 work. The same goes for any conservative field.

      Because of this in most cases magnetic, electric and gravitational fields are used to transmit work from one system to another.
      (31 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user MartyMcFry
    since the charge started moving up, that means there is another force pointing to the right, correct?
    (20 votes)
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    • leaf blue style avatar for user pandora
      Yes, you are exactly right.
      However, compared to the velocity of the wire being moved to the right, the force on the wire to the right (because of the charges moving up) is infinitesimally small and insignificant (in most cases).
      (12 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user John Hall
    When the charge starts moving up the wire it's going to slow the movement of the wire (or start pushing the wire in the direction of the magnetic field, right?
    (5 votes)
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  • leaf blue style avatar for user Anjuman R.
    Doesn't it have to be a loop of wire for there to be induced current?
    (5 votes)
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    • leaf green style avatar for user James Hawkins
      No one seems to be mentioning or noticing the fact that there is no closed circuit, so if it is not an infinitely long wire, a charge must be building up on both ends of the wire because if the charges have nowhere else to go, they will "bunch up". But, in that case, the capacitance between one end of the wire and the other would discharge an the current would have to reverse, causing a reverse voltage. The current between the "capacitor" and the wire, which is an inductor, would be a damped oscillation at a very high frequency since the inductance of a short wire and the tiny capacitance would resonate at a high frequency. Whatever the case, this should be addressed in the video or another following video. Of course, another way, energy could be released is by radiation, which would happen as the charges accelerate through the wire.'

      Of course, in the previous videos, no current flows when the motor loop is not connected to a load.

      I too, would like to see some other comments on this.
      (5 votes)
  • leaf orange style avatar for user fba97
    what is the difference between potential difference/voltage and e.m.f?
    (4 votes)
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    • piceratops tree style avatar for user Parth Bandivadekar
      EMF is in essence a superset of voltage. For e.g. If a battery of EMF 6 V is hooked up across a resistor it doesn't necessarily produce a voltage difference of 6 V across the resistor, since there is an internal resistance in the battery itself, caused due to its internal mechanism.
      Hence Voltage = EMF - (Current in the battery 'i' )*(Internal Resistance of battery)
      V = E - iR
      (2 votes)
  • leafers seedling style avatar for user Nivesh Patil
    What are carbon brushes?
    (2 votes)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user Theo2067
    Is this the only way to do the right-hand rule? I've seen it done differently in my class involving just the thumb and fingers. The fingers are first being pointed straight, then curling.
    (3 votes)
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  • piceratops seed style avatar for user lovely vinay
    what is a induced current
    and how it is useful in our daILY LIFE
    (2 votes)
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  • leafers seed style avatar for user mahamahmad99
    In self inductance when current is increased the induce emf will be opposite to that of battery and if current is decreased the induce emf will aid rather than opposing the battery. How?
    (2 votes)
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    • blobby green style avatar for user robshowsides
      When current is flowing through an inductor, the situation is analogous to a mass gaining momentum, or a spinning object with rotational inertia. The magnetic field created by the inductor stores a bunch of energy, and you can think of this like an object that is rotating, and thus has both angular momentum and rotational kinetic energy. Trying to suddenly change the current in an inductor is like trying to suddenly change the rate of rotation of a spinning object -- it will "resist" you. If you really did stop the current in a very short time, the magnetic field would disappear in that time (the current is the source of the magnetic field), but the magnetic field represents a bunch of energy, and that energy has to go somewhere.

      The same idea works in the opposite direction. If you suddenly try to increase the current in an inductor, you are trying to suddenly create a significant magnetic field, but that requires energy, and so your battery will be pushing with all its voltage, but it will appear that the inductor "pushes back" with some opposite emf, since otherwise you'd be extracting a large amount of energy out of a small power source in a very short time.
      (3 votes)

Video transcript

Let's say I have a magnetic field popping out of this video. So these little brown circles show us the tips of the vectors popping out of our screen. And in that magnetic field I have this wire, this off-white colored wire. And sitting on that off-white colored wire I have a charge of charge Q. Let me write down the other stuff. So this is the magnetic field B coming out. Let's say I were to take this whole wire. And let's say that the wire overlaps with the magnetic field a distance of L. So let's say the magnetic field stops here and stops here. And let's say that this distance right here, that distance is L. I drew it a little bit weird but you get the idea. From here to here is L. I have this charge sitting on some type of conductor that we can consider a wire. And the magnetic field is pushing out of the page. So in this current formation, let's say I don't have any voltage across this wire or anything. What's going to happen? Well, if I just have a stationary charge sitting in a magnetic field, nothing really is going to happen, right? Because we know that the force due to a magnetic field is equal to the charge times the cross product of the velocity of the charge and the magnetic field. If this wires are stationary and there's no voltage across it, et cetera, et cetera, the velocity of this charge is going to be 0. So if the velocity is 0, we know that the magnitude of a cross product is the same thing as--. So Q is, that's just a scalar quantity-- so that's just Q-- times the magnitude of the velocity times the magnitude of B times sine theta. And in these situations where anything that's going on in this plane is going to be perpendicular to this magnetic field--. So the angle between the magnetic field and any velocity-- if there were any within this plane-- would be 90 degrees. So you wouldn't have to worry about the sine theta too much. But we see if the velocity is 0 or the speed is 0, the magnitude of the velocity is 0, that there's not going to be any net force due to the magnetic field on this charge. And nothing interesting's going to happen. But let's do a little experiment. What happens if I were to move this wire, if I were to shift it to the left, with the velocity V? So I take this wire and I shift it to the left with the velocity V. All right, so the whole wire is shifting to the left. Well, if the whole wire is shifting to the left, this charge is sitting on that wire, so that charge is also going to move to the left with the velocity V. And now things get interesting. The charge is moving to the left with the velocity V, so now we can apply the first magnetism formula that we learned. We could apply this formula. So what's going to happen to this charge? Well, the force of the charge is going to be the charge times the magnitude of the velocity cross the magnetic field vector. So we know that there's going to be some net force. This is non-zero now. And this is non-zero, we're assuming. And we're assuming the charge is non-zero. So what direction is the force going to be in? So let's do our right hand rule on the cross product. V cross B will give us the direction. So point your index finger in the direction of the velocity. I have to look at my own hand to make sure I'm doing it right. So you point your index finger in the direction of the velocity. Point your middle finger in the direction of the magnetic field. The magnetic field is popping out of the page, so your middle finger is actually going to be popping out of the page. Your next two fingers are just going to do something like that. So you're kind of approximating like you're shooting a gun. And then what's your thumb going to do? Your thumb is going to point straight up. This is the palm of-- that's your thumb. This could be your nail, fingernail, fingernail of your thumb, fingernail of your middle finger. This is the direction of the velocity. Let me get a suitable color. The velocity is that way. The magnetic field is popping out of the page. So the force on the particle-- on this charged particle or on this charge-- due to the magnetic field is going to go in the direction of your thumb. So the direction of the force is in this direction. So what's going to happen? There's going to be a net force in this direction on the charge. And the charge is going to move upwards, right? I mean, when you start having a moving-- you could imagine also that you had multiple charges, right? If you had multiple charges here and you're moving the whole wire, all of those charges are going to be moving upwards. And what is another way to call a bunch of moving charges along a conductor? Well, it's a current, depending on how much charge is moving per second. So at least in very qualitative terms, you see that when you move a wire through a magnetic field or when you move a magnetic field past a wire, right? Because they're kind of the same thing, it's all about the relative motion. But if you move a wire through a magnetic field, it is actually going to induce a current in the wire. It's going to induce the current in the wire, and actually this is how electric generators are generated. And I'll do a whole series of videos on how you-- you know, if you're using coal or steam or hydropower, how that turns, essentially that turns these generators around and it induces current. And that's how we get electricity from all of these various energy sources that essentially just make turbines turn. But anyway, let's go back to what we were doing. So let me ask you a question. If this particle-- and this all has a point-- if this particle starts at the beginning. Let's say the particle is right here. So it starts right where the magnetic field starts affecting the wire. And how much work is going to be done on the particle by the magnetic field? Well, what's work? Work is equal to force times distance, where the force has to be in the same direction as the distance, right? Force times distance, I won't mess with the vectors right now. But they have to be in the same direction. So how much work is going to be done on this particle? So the work is going to be the net force exerted on the particle times the distance. Well, this distance is L, right? We say, once a particle gets here there's no magnetic field up here, so the magnetic field will stop acting on it. So the total work done: Work, which is equal to force times distance, is equal to-- so the net force is this up here. Q-- and I'll leave some space-- V cross B times the distance. And the distance right here is just a scalar quantity, so we could put it out front, right? Q times L times V cross B, right? This is-- Q V cross B is the force times the distance. That's just the work done. Now how much work is being done per charge, right? This is how much work is being done on this charge. But let's say there might have been multiple charges, so we just want to know how much work is done per charge. So work per charge. We could divide both sides by charge. So work per charge is equal to this per charge. So it is equal to the distance times the velocity that you're pulling the wire to the left with cross the magnetic field. This is where it gets interesting. So what is work per charge? The units of work are energy, right? Joules. And charge, that's in coulombs. So what are joules per coulomb? This is equal to volts. Volts are joules per coulomb. So this particle, or these charges, are going to start moving in this direction as if there is a voltage difference. As if there is a potential difference between this point and this point. As if this is the positive voltage terminal and this is the minus voltage terminal. So there's actually going to be a voltage-- or a perceived voltage-- difference between this point and this point that will start making the current flow. Let's say you didn't even know that there was a magnetic field here. You would just see this current flowing. You'd be like, oh well, there has to be a voltage difference there, right? But when we're dealing with this-- because when we talk about voltages, that was like a potential difference. That something-- that a particle or a charge has a higher potential energy and that's why it's moving. But it's hard to-- at least for these purposes-- say, well you have a higher potential energy here. It's really being created by the magnetic field. So in this context, people have said that instead of saying that this is creating a voltage difference between this point and this point, if the magnetic field on the moving wire is causing that, people say that it's creating an electromotive force, or an EMF. But EMF, the units are still joules per coulomb or volts. And it really is-- in every way when you're analyzing the circuits-- still the same thing as a potential difference or as a voltage difference. But since it seems a little bit more proactive, it seems like this magnetic field is actually impacting a force on this wire that is causing the current to move. We call it EMF. So we could say that the EMF, the electromotive force-- or the voltage across from here to here, but they're really the same thing-- is equal to the distance of the wire that's in the magnetic field times the velocity-- that you're pulling the wire in-- cross the magnetic field. So let's say, I don't know, let's just throw out a bunch of numbers. Let's say that the magnetic field is-- I'll make it easy-- 2 teslas. My velocity to the left is 3 meters per second. And let's-- just for fun-- let's give this a little bit of a resistance, just so we can figure out something. So let's say this resistance is, I don't know, let's say it is 6 ohms. There's a 6 ohm resistor here. So the resistance of the wire from here to here is 6 ohms. All wires have some resistance. So first of all, what's the EMF? Oh, and let's say that this total distance right here is 12 meters. So the EMF induced on the-- or the electromotive force-- put on to the wire by the magnetic field is going to equal the distance of the wire in the magnetic field-- 12 meters-- times--. Well, when we're just taking the cross product, we know that the velocity is perpendicular to the magnetic field. So we don't have to worry about sine theta because theta is already 90 degrees. So we just have to worry about the magnitudes. So it's going to be 12 meters times the velocity, which is 3 meters per second, times the magnetic field, or the magnitude of the magnetic field, that's 2 teslas. And so the EMF is 12 times 3 times 2. 12 times 6. Which is 72. You could say 72 volts, or 72 joules per coulomb. And now you have that potential difference, or that EMF, across a 6 ohm resistor, right? So that, you just go back to voltage is equal to IR. Or you could write EMF is equal to IR. So EMF divided by resistance. So if we take this EMF and we divide it by the resistance-- divided by 6 ohms-- we get the current, right? EMF divided by resistance is equal to current. So you divide 72 volts or 72 joules per coulomb divided by 6 ohms. And then you get a current going along this wire right here, due to the EMF, due to the magnetic field-- I know it's very messy at this point-- of 12 amperes. Anyway, I'm all out of time. I'll see you in the next video.