20
votes
4answers
2k views

Why do we deal only with large scale magnetic fields in astrophysics, and not electric fields?

In astrophysics there is a lot going on about strong, large scale magnetic fields: in stars (prominences), magnetic dynamos, compact accretors collimating jets, etc. There's even a special ...
4
votes
1answer
248 views

Application of Ampère's law in low $Re_m$ MHD

Ampère's law states that $$ \nabla \times \mathbf{B} = \mu_0 \mathbf{J} \tag{1}$$ Simultaneously, from Ohm's law, we know that ...
3
votes
1answer
148 views

A rod filled with water and charged particles is rotated in magnetic field

Assume we have a rod of diameter $d$ and length $l$. It is filled with a mixture of water and, say, sodium chloride. Thus there are positively charged sodium ions and negatively charged chloride ions ...
1
vote
1answer
236 views

The equation of a ferrofluid under a magnetic field?

What is the parametric equation guiding the geometry of a ferrofluid under a magnetic field? See also this Wikipedia page. From previous research, Maxwell's Equations and Navier-Stokes Equations were ...
2
votes
0answers
208 views

Solar wind and the Earth's magnetic field

I have again an old question from a comprehensive exam I took a couple of months ago. Lucky for me one could pick 5 out of 8 questions, because on some of the problems I didn't even know how to start. ...
4
votes
2answers
188 views

Dynamic ferrofluid sculptures

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UJJuq_pcyIQ What exactly is going on in the video example? I understand the phenomena occurs because of magnetism but I am trying to figure out the mechanics behind ...
3
votes
2answers
355 views

Producing energy from magnetic flux loops

I've simplified this down by quite a lot but as far as I understand it, magnetic fields on the Sun's surface twist together and when it gets all a bit too much they release energy. My question is why ...
5
votes
4answers
625 views

Help fill in my understanding of the Polywell fusion reactor

Polywell is a proposed new type of fusion reactor, which is designed to use magnetic fields to overcome the problems with the Elmore-Tuck-Watson fusor. I'm trying to understand exactly how it works. ...
8
votes
3answers
613 views

How can we make an order-of-magnitude estimate of the strength of Earth's magnetic field?

The source of Earth's magnetic field is a dynamo driven by convection current in the molten core. Using some basic physics principles (Maxwell's equations, fluid mechanics equations), properties of ...