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Can magnetic flux bend?

  1. Jun 8, 2009 #1
    When two magnets are taped together with both north sides touching does the magnetic flux stay in its normal possition or does it bend, if it does in what way does it bend?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 9, 2009 #2
    flux lines can be thought of as having tension along their length and having the property of repelling one another.

    of course, in reality there are no actual lines. its just a trick to allow us to visualize the field. flux lines can also represent the flow of water from a source to a sink. they can also reperesent stress/strain in a solid
  4. Jun 9, 2009 #3
    Are flux lines made of some type of sub-atomic partical, or is it kind of like gravity in that the magnets sense each other as the Sun and Earth do, yet there is nothing actuall conecting them.
  5. Jun 9, 2009 #4
    gravity can be modelled using flux lines. so can the electric force. so can flowing water or air. so can stress or strain in a solid.
  6. Jun 9, 2009 #5
    Flux lines are a property of a magnetic field. A thing in that field will react to that field according to the 'line' it is in: it's next position will be along that line as opposed to taking any other path. There doesn't have to be an actual physical line of any kind there for it to do that, just a force, or forces, that end up describing that line. The lines, therefore, are a kind of map of the distribution of strength and force vectors of that field. They chart how another magnet, or magnetic substance, or charge, or whatever can interact with a magnetic field, will react at whatever point in that chart you pick. The field is real. The 'lines' not necessarily, in that there are, in fact, no grains, or threads, or grooves, or strings of particles, in place that anyone can prove.

    The lines can be bent for sure: two north poles forced into proximity will distort each others lines, and the fields of two unlike poles will join up to create a newly shaped magnetic field. The technical term for this is superposition of fields. That becomes of importance when you want to, say, calculate the trajectory a charged particle might take in the new configuration of flux lines.

    There is distortion of field lines, evident in the earth's own magnetic field. It isn't a nice, uniform magnet. There are "local variations": compasses do not all point in the same direction from place to place when they're pointing North.

    As granpa said, the lines can be thought of as repelling one another. Extending that: lines cannot touch or cross.

    (It's important to be aware, too, that a magnetic field doesn't have any inherent energy. It's just like a spring: you can store energy in a spring, but you can't use it as a power source. A magnetic field has no more harvestable energy than a brick. So, if you physically push two opposing poles together and clamp them there, you can later get back a large portion of the energy it took for you to push them together, but that's all.)
  7. Jun 10, 2009 #6
    I have a few questions about an attached illistartion. I would appreciate it if you took a look and gave me your thoughts on it thanks.

    Attached Files:

  8. Jun 10, 2009 #7
    You can't see the questions I asked so I'll tell you here. In the drawn senario does the flux of one magnet go through the poles of the other magnet? Does the flux keep its strength? Or does the flux alter its course to avoid the flux of the other magnet.
  9. Jun 10, 2009 #8
    The drawing in the attachment is not correct. The flux from two magnets squeezed together with like poles adjacent wouldn't look like what you've drawn.

    What would really happen is that the flux lines would be indistinguishable from those of a single magnet of the new width: all the lines from the North end would curl around back into the south end. Lines coming from a given pole can't re-enter that same pole. All the lines coming from the South end of the magnets would also curl back up to the North end, and none would re-enter the south end. Again: taping two magnets together with like poles adjacent is like making a new magnet of greater width.

    So, to correct your drawing just draw the field lines you'd have in a single magnet around the two joined magnets.
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2009
  10. Jun 10, 2009 #9
    Initially, just talk about electrical lines of forces...taking M.F directly will cause major confusion. More over the properties are almost the same.......'almost' i.e.

    Flux lines do not exist!

    What happens is suppose, we have 2 point charges, in this case if you introduce a test charge somewhere, it will have to respond to both of these point charges, or both the point charges will apply force on this test charge, as a result the test charge will move towards the resultant force.

    Now, we can simulate this resultant force/direction on the test charge with just one field (or, this will be a resultant field)...but this field need to vary as the charge moves in space (since the distance between the test charge and the 2 charges will also change). These are the lines of forces...they are the 'resultant' field of all the fields that are available by virtue of the various sources.

    There are the properties of lines of forces (according to my notes so it might be wrong) -
    I'm not sure about that 5th point...also there's a 9th point but again I'm really very much in ambiguity about that.

    Following these principles, your diagram is wrong.
  11. Jun 14, 2009 #10
    I appreciate the input from all of you.
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