Before we study magnetic effects of electric current,

let's study what is electric current and its different effects


What is Electric Current?

We have studied in Last Chapter that

Electric Current is the flow of electric Charges in a Conductor


What are its Different Effects of Electric Current

Electric Current has 2 Main Effects

  • Heating Effect of Electric Current
    This we have already studied in last chapter that when an electric current passes through a conductor (like a high resistance wire),
    the conductor becomes hot after some time and produces heat
    This is called heating effect of Electric Current

  • Magnetic Effect of Electric Current
    When an electric current flows through a circuit, it produces a magnetic field around it
    This is called Magnetic Effect of Electric Current


Activity to Show Magnetic Effect of Electric Current

Let's follow these steps

  • Make Electric Circuit Containing Battery and Copper Wires
  • Place a Magnetic Compass Near it
  • Now, close the circuit to make the current flow
  • We observe that, Magnetic Compass shows deflection
    This deflection is due to Magnetic Effect of Electric Current
  • Now, lets reverse the flow of current
  • Now, the Electric Compass shows deflection in opposite direction
    So, as direction of current changes, direction of magnetic field changes
  • Now, if we increase distance of magnetic compass from current,
  • The Electric Compass deflects less than before
    Thus, magnetic field becomes less as we move away from the wire




A video explanation is given below

What is Electromagnetism

It is branch of physics which studies phenomena of Electrical Current and Magnetic Fields

This phenomena was accidentally discovered by Hans Christian Oersted 

He saw deflection of Magnetic Compass placed near wire through which current was passed

Unit of Magnetic Field Strength is Oester which is named after him.



Important Points About Magnetic Effect of Electrical Current


Magnetic Effect Depends upon Amount of Current Passing in Wire

More the current passing in wire, more the electromagnetic effect

Less the current passing in the wire, less the electromagnetic effect


Magnetic Effect Depends upon Distance from the wire

If we move away from the wire, the magnetic field decreases


Magnetic Effect of Electrical Current Depends Upon Type of Conductor(Wire)

In Electric Circuit we can use different types of Wires (or Conductors).


Different types of Conductors are 

  • Straight Conductor (Straight wire)
  • Circular loop (Circular Wire) and
  • Solenoid (Long coil of wire)


Let's study these one by one


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Maninder Singh

CA Maninder Singh is a Chartered Accountant for the past 14 years and a teacher from the past 18 years. He teaches Science, Economics, Accounting and English at Teachoo