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Can anyone tell me why when a charged particle enters into a magnetic field it takes a...
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High School Teacher
When a charged particle moves in a magnetic field it experiences a force that is at right angles to the direction of motion and to the direction of the magnetic field. This causes the particle to change direction without speeding it up or slowing it down. However when it shifts direction the force changes direction so that it remains at right angles. This is precisely what a centripedal force does to an object traveling in a circle. If the strength of the magnetic field doesn't change over the orbit of a circle the particle will be trapped into orbiting in a circle. If the magnetic field does change then the path of the particle will only be curved.
Posted by hnystrom on July 11, 2010 at 7:02 PM (Answer #1)
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