• Neil R. SheeleyJr.


Most of us learned about magnetic fields as children playing with bar magnets, horseshoe magnets, ceramic magnets from the refrigerator door, or electromagnets obtained by connecting a coil of wire to the terminals of a dry cell or battery. We imagined that magnets are surrounded by field lines similar to the patterns of iron filings around a bar magnet or to the meridional lines of the Earth’s field, that we inferred from northward-pointing compass needles. In elementary courses in electromagnetism, we learned more about these field lines, including how to draw them. Then, in advanced courses, we learned that the field lines do not really exist after all because they appear different to observers moving relative to each other and may disappear entirely for some observers.

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neil R. SheeleyJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.AlexandriaUSA

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