# How to Convert Maxwell's Equations into Integral Form

• Anne Leite
In summary, there are multiple ways to convert Maxwell's equations from differential form to integral form. This includes using Gauss' law, Stokes theorem, and the Biot-Savart law. However, the process is more complex than simply going from differentiation to integration and may involve the use of vector analysis.
Anne Leite

## Homework Statement

I'd like to know how to convert Maxwell's Equations from Differencial form to Integral form.

## Homework Equations

Gauss' Law
Gauss' Law for Magnetism
The Ampere-Maxwell Law

## The Attempt at a Solution

Convert using properties of vector analysis (as Divergence and Curl). May I convert them, using the opposite process that I would use to convert the integral form to differential form?

Last edited:
There are a couple of ways to get integral forms of Maxwell's equations. Gauss' law can be applied to the equation ## \nabla \cdot E=\rho/\epsilon_o ## to give ## \int \nabla \cdot E \, d^3x= \int E \cdot \, dA=Q/\epsilon_o ## where ## Q ## is the total charge enclosed, and the flux of the electric field is over the surface of the enclosed volume. An alternative integral form can be written for this equation: ## E(x)=\int \frac{\rho(x')(x-x')}{4 \pi \epsilon_o |x-x'|^3} \, d^3x' ## . This second form is essentially Coulomb's law (inverse square law) for the electric charge distribution ## \rho(x) ##. ## \\ ## Gauss' law can also be employed on the equation ## \nabla \cdot B=0 ##, but usually this one is just used in a qualitative form where the lines of flux for the magnetic field ## B ## are said to be continuous. In integral form, it reads ## \int B \cdot \, dA=0 ##. ## \\ ## ## \\ ## For the curl equations, Stokes theorem (## \int \nabla \times E \cdot \, dA=\oint E \cdot \, ds ##), is usually employed, e.g. Faradays law becomes ##\varepsilon= \oint E \cdot \, ds=-\int (\frac{\partial{B}}{\partial{t}}) \cdot \, dA ##. ## \\ ## For the curl B, in the steady state, again Stokes law is often employed to give ## \oint B \cdot ds=\mu_o I ##. An alternative integral form does exist for this one also in the steady state which is the Biot-Savart Law: ## B(x)=\int \frac{\mu_o J(x') \times (x-x')}{4 \pi |x-x'|^3} \, d^3x' ##. For the non-steady state, I believe the solutions of Maxwell's equations are found by the Lienard-Wiechert method, but that is likely to be beyond the scope of what you are presently doing. ## \\ ## It is worth noting that the integral forms of these, which is sometimes treated in courses in vector calculus, are a little more complicated than simply going from differentiation to integration.

Last edited:
BvU

## 1. How do I convert Maxwell's equations into integral form?

To convert Maxwell's equations into integral form, you can use the integral form of the laws of electromagnetism, which state that the electric and magnetic fields can be expressed as integrals over closed surfaces and closed loops, respectively. This allows for a more general and practical solution to many problems in electromagnetism.

## 2. Why is it important to convert Maxwell's equations into integral form?

Converting Maxwell's equations into integral form allows for a more versatile approach to solving problems in electromagnetism. It also helps in understanding the physical interpretation of the equations and their implications for various phenomena in electromagnetism.

## 3. What are the steps involved in converting Maxwell's equations into integral form?

The steps involved in converting Maxwell's equations into integral form include identifying the closed surface or loop over which the integral will be taken, applying the appropriate integral form of the law, and simplifying the resulting equation. This process may vary depending on the specific equation being converted.

## 4. Can Maxwell's equations be converted into integral form for all types of problems?

Yes, Maxwell's equations can be converted into integral form for all types of problems in electromagnetism. This includes problems involving static electric and magnetic fields, as well as problems involving time-varying fields.

## 5. Are there any limitations to converting Maxwell's equations into integral form?

One limitation to converting Maxwell's equations into integral form is that it may not always be possible to find a closed surface or loop that satisfies the necessary conditions for the integral form. In such cases, other methods of solving the equations may need to be used.

Replies
5
Views
1K
• Electromagnetism
Replies
5
Views
1K
• Electromagnetism
Replies
7
Views
459
• Classical Physics
Replies
1
Views
809
Replies
18
Views
4K
• Special and General Relativity
Replies
25
Views
1K
Replies
0
Views
651
• Electromagnetism
Replies
13
Views
1K
• Electromagnetism
Replies
3
Views
1K