## Electric Field Wave vs Magnetic Field Wave

$c=\lambda v$

Ian_Lee_1E
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:31 pm

### Electric Field Wave vs Magnetic Field Wave

What are the differences between electric field wave and magnetic field wave?

Professor said that Light is a Electromagnetic radiation which is a combination of wave of electric + magnetic fields.

Also, what does it mean that each vector in these field waves have frequencies and a magnetic field oscillates at 90 degrees angle from electric?

Emily Vu 1L
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:40 pm
Been upvoted: 2 times

### Re: Electric Field Wave vs Magnetic Field Wave

Hi Ian! So, I think the reason why Dr. Lavelle didn't go too much in detail regarding the magnetic field wave is because it's something that we traditionally cover in physics rather than chemistry. That being said, what Dr. Lavelle said in his lecture is that light is made up of oscillating electric and magnetic fields and the magnetic field oscillates at 90 degrees, or is perpendicular, to the oscillation of the electric field. To my understanding, all we are expected to know is that both these fields are vectors - so they have direction and magnitude - and it is the electric field that pushes on atom which in turn causes the oscillations. I attached an image that might help you visualize how these fields interact with one another in light but to emphasize again, we are more concerned with the effects of the electric field in light on atoms and how they interact with electrons.

I hope this helps!
Attachments

Khushi_Gupta_1A
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:45 pm

### Re: Electric Field Wave vs Magnetic Field Wave

Hi Ian!
As Emily said I don't think Professor Lavelle expects us to know too much about the particulars of the electromagnetic field but one thing I think is important to understand is that the magnetic field oscillates 90 degrees (perpendicularly) to the electric field.

Jiapeng Han 1C
Posts: 91
Joined: Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:50 pm

### Re: Electric Field Wave vs Magnetic Field Wave

Fields are essentially vectors which have directions. Direction of electric field and direction of magnetic field are perpendicular to each other--they are oscillating at 90 degrees to each other.