Help with electricity, four wires that carry current

In summary: It's easy to get confused.The force on one current carrying wire due to another one is measured in terms of the perpendicular force on the wire.This is due to the current being pushed in opposite directions along the length of the wire.The direction of the force can be found by taking the cross product of the vectors.

Homework Statement

So four wires are arranged in a square and all carry the same current "I"
They are all the same distance apart. The two on the left are coming out towards you "O" and the two on the right go away from you "X"

I knew I would need k$I^{2}$ divided by distance, but I"m not sure how to find the force, per unit length on the lower left wire. I have to find the magnitude and direction.

Homework Statement

So four wires are arranged in a square and all carry the same current "I"
They are all the same distance apart. The two on the left are coming out towards you "O" and the two on the right go away from you "X"

I knew I would need k$I^{2}$ divided by distance, but I"m not sure how to find the force, per unit length on the lower left wire. I have to find the magnitude and direction.
You need to show an attempt at a solution before we can help you.

:-l

I have.
I try to set it up so that I can break things into vectors in X and Y for both, but I'm not sure how to put together an answer.

:-l

I have.
I try to set it up so that I can break things into vectors in X and Y for both, but I'm not sure how to put together an answer.
What is the question you are trying to answer ?

What you have done is too vague.
Do you know the formula for the force on one current carrying wire due to another one?
Did you try working out the force due to each of the other three wires separately, then summing the vectors?
This is like the square of point charges problems you have done before only with magnetism.

Okay.
Well that should be (k I^2)/distance right?
I'll try that.

1. What is electricity and how does it work?

Electricity is a form of energy that is created by the movement of electrons. It is the flow of these electrons through a conductive material, such as a wire, that allows us to power devices and appliances. Electricity is produced by generators, which convert other forms of energy, like wind, water, or coal, into electrical energy.

2. What are the four wires that carry current?

The four wires that carry current are typically found in a three-phase electrical system. These wires are known as the line wires or phase wires, and they are labeled A, B, and C. The fourth wire is known as the neutral wire and is labeled N. The three phase wires carry alternating current (AC) from the power source to the electrical load, while the neutral wire acts as a return path for the current.

3. How do I know which wire is the neutral wire?

The neutral wire is typically identified by its white color and is connected to the center tap of the transformer in a three-phase system. It is also the wire that carries the least amount of current compared to the three phase wires. If you are unsure which wire is the neutral, it is best to consult a licensed electrician.

4. What is the purpose of the four wires in a three-phase system?

The four wires in a three-phase system work together to provide a balanced electrical load and efficient power distribution. The three phase wires carry equal amounts of current, which reduces the strain on each wire and allows for a higher power output. The neutral wire acts as a safety measure, providing a return path for excess current and preventing damage to the system.

5. Can I alter or remove any of the four wires in a three-phase system?

No, it is not recommended to alter or remove any of the four wires in a three-phase system. The balance of these wires is crucial for proper power distribution and removing or altering them can cause power outages, damage to electrical equipment, and potential safety hazards. If you are experiencing issues with your electrical system, it is best to consult a licensed electrician for assistance.

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