What is the difference between magnetism and electromagnetism?


What is the difference between magnetism and electromagnetism?

In: Physics

It’s now recognized that Electricity and Magnetism are the same thing. Electromagnetism is the term used to describe the unified force.

I think the question is actually “what is the difference in how the molecules are arranged in persistent magnets and electromagnets?”

The question you asked. I believe would be about the conditions of the magnetic field created. Not as to why it is created. I don’t know the answer to that question.

However. ELI5 for how. Persistent magnets are like the fans a sports game. They all sit down in nice rows and look the same direction. And this creates a magnetic field. Electromagnets are like like people at a barbeque. normally they kind of float around. Not really have any pattern in their position. Very free and don’t care. Until the food is ready (electricity is started) then they all line up to get food in nice organized rows. Then when the food is gone (electricity is turned off) they go back to being non magnetic and not having organized position.

It’s also why.. magnets can lose their magnetism due to a traumatic force. Think of a baseball game where a baseball goes into the crowd… (The magnet gets hit really hard) everyone gets up and tries to catch it. The organization of the people (molecules) is gone.

It’s also why if you have a strong enough electrical current you can kind of weakly give persistent magnetism to a metal… Once they have been organized. The molecules stay roughly in that pattern after the electricity is turned off.

So metals that are persistent magnets have nice organized molecules. And metals that are only magnetic when inside an electrified coil have disorganized molecules that can only be controlled under great effort. And non magnetic metals have molecules that can’t be controlled at all.