## Electromagnetism

Electromagnetism is a branch of physics involving the study of the electromagnetic force, a type of physical interaction that occurs between electrically charged particles. Illustration of the electric field surrounding a positive (red) and a negative (blue) charge. image: Geek3/wikipedia

The electromagnetic force usually exhibits electromagnetic fields such as electric fields, magnetic fields and light, and is one of the four fundamental interactions (commonly called forces) in nature. The other three fundamental interactions are the strong interaction(force), the weak interaction and gravitation Representation of the electric field vector of a wave of circularly polarized electromagnetic radiation. image: Dave3457/wikipedia

Origin of the word

The word electromagnetism is a compound form of two Greek terms, ἤλεκτρον ēlektron, "amber", and μαγνῆτις λίθος magnētis lithos,  which means "Μagnesian stone”,  a type of iron ore. Electromagnetic phenomena are defined in terms of the electromagnetic force, sometimes called the Lorentz force, which includes both electricity and magnetism as different manifestations of the same phenomenon.

Daily applications of electromagnetism

The electromagnetic force plays a major role in determining the internal properties of most objects encountered in daily life. Ordinary matter takes its form as a result of intermolecular forces between individual atoms and molecules in matter, and is a manifestation of the electromagnetic force. Electrons are bound by the electromagnetic force to atomic nuclei, and their orbital shapes and their influence on nearby atoms with their electrons is described by quantum mechanics. The electromagnetic force governs all chemical processes, which arise from interactions between the electrons of neighboring atoms.

Theoretical mathematical aspects of electromagnetism

There are numerous mathematical descriptions of the electromagnetic field. In classical electrodynamics, electric fields are described as electric potential and electric current. In Faraday's law, magnetic fields are associated with electromagnetic induction and magnetism, and Maxwell's equations describe how electric and magnetic fields are generated and altered by each other and by charges and currents.

The theoretical implications of electromagnetism, particularly the establishment of the speed of light based on properties of the "medium" of propagation (permeability and permittivity), led to the development of special relativity by Albert Einstein in 1905.

The electromagnetic force is one of the four fundamental forces of nature. At high energy the weak force and electromagnetic force are unified as a single electroweak force. In the history of the universe, during the quark epoch the unified force broke into the two separate forces as the universe cooled.

Source adapted from: Wikipedia contributors. (2018, September 11). Electromagnetism. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 22:01, September 23, 2018, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Electromagnetism&oldid=859118092