Electricity is a type of electromagnetic radiation emitted by some types of atoms. Electrons are tiny little particles which “orbit” about the outer edges of highly-charged atoms, and everything created by these collisions are electrical energy. Each electron has a tiny positive charge, but because of the way electrons move when hitting other atoms, each atom has an equal amount of positive charge around its positively-charged shell. Electrons gain and lose electrical charges as they move around different parts of an atom. It’s this shifting action that produces the electricity we use every day.
The electrical energy we call electricity flows through conducting materials (plates, wires, and plates attached to a circuit) and creates a movement that carries it through space. This transfer of charge is called the movement of electricity through a circuit. We can recognize electricity’s movement by what is called an electric field. A current of electricity flowing through a wire creates a push against its negative wire, where the negatively-charged end of the wire is higher than the positively-charged one, causing it to flow in a circuit.
The electrical current that flows through conductors like metal plates is called magnetism. The reason why electricity moves through magnets is that there is a natural force at work in both magnetism and electricity, known as the electromagnetic force. To better understand magnetism, let’s think of a magnet as around spring. Because the constant force of attraction between the poles of the magnets keeps them spherical, the magnetism is also similar to the static electricity you feel when listening to a radio or television antenna.
There are two types of the electromagnetic force, or the strength of electric attraction and repulsion, at work in electricity. The first is electromagnetic induction, and the second is electromagnetic repulsion. Electromagnetic induction is what happens in a circuit when an electric current is induced onto an insulated conductor. In this process, an electrical current is formed which flows through the insulated conductor. This induced current is what forms the very basic form of electricity.
In order for electricity to flow freely through conductors like steel wires, they must be free of impurities, which makes the material very smooth. It is only once the material has been sufficiently polished that the conductors can become highly conductive, which is what occurs when a current of electricity runs through the material. The fact that the electrical current forms a spiral pattern when flowing through a smooth material explains why we can use electricity even in very small solvents such as water.
In order for electricity to create a spiral pattern, the current needs to be running through both sides of the material. This creates what is called the induced volt, which is the amount of voltage created by the flow of electricity. This induced voltage is what is used to power the various appliances we use in our homes. In some cases, other types of magnetic fields may also be added to the electricity-generating process in order to make the electricity stronger.
The third type of magnetism that we will discuss today is what we call permanent magnetism. We will not be discussing any alternate forms of magnetism here. What we are doing is describing how electricity is produced when two metals meet each other and make a strong magnetic force. In the case of two metals with opposing permanent magnetism, these metals will push against each other until a third point is reached. This point is where the electricity is created and directed to an appliance. In order for the electricity to continue running in this manner, both metals need to be kept very slightly bonded to each other.
As you can see, there are many different ways that electricity can be produced. The four main forms of magnetic field generation are electromagnetism, induced voltage, permanent magnetism, and wind turbines. You may have heard of some of these before. For example, wind turbines use a combination of electromagnetic and permanent magnetism to produce large amounts of electricity. If you are interested in learning more about electricity and how it is produced, check out our website for more information.