1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Question about polarity?

  1. Sep 12, 2013 #1
    Referring to following image,

    Does anyone have any suggestions on which side is positive polarity?

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions :>

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2013 #2
    could you explain what the picture consists of?
  4. Sep 12, 2013 #3


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    The bottom of the magnet, the side the compass is pointing to, is actually a south pole. A compass points towards the North pole of the earth not because it is magnetically north, but because it is magnetically a south pole and is in the North direction.
  5. Sep 12, 2013 #4
    Polarity is the most confusing concept in my understanding.

    Thanks you very much for suggestions :>
  6. Sep 12, 2013 #5


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Is that a battery in the upper part of the image? is that a magnetic compass in the lower part? If the answers are both "yes", then you cannot determine polarity of the battery using a compass.

    A compass moves its needle into alignment with a magnetic field (the earth's, usually).

    The polarity of a battery cannot measured using a magnetic compass. You could find the polarity of the battery using a voltmeter, for one example.
  7. Sep 12, 2013 #6
    I think that is a magnet, not a battery.
  8. Sep 12, 2013 #7


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2017 Award

    I think you are right

    tho when you look closely at the top thing, I'm wondering if its a flip down lid that covers/protects the compass face ????? see the little lugs at 180 Deg spacing

    but the original question is so screwball, its really difficult to figure out what the Op really wants to know

Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook