Does an electron beam in empty space generate magnetic fields around them just as with current in conductor.

Is it experimentally proven that two parallel electron beam would attract each other.

  • $\begingroup$ You might want to look up ‘magnetically insulated transmission line’. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    May 13, 2022 at 13:36
  • $\begingroup$ Why would a moving beam of electrons be different to any other current? $\endgroup$
    – ProfRob
    May 13, 2022 at 17:19

1 Answer 1


Yes, an electron beam in empty space does generate magnetic fields just as with current in conductor. However, two parallel electron beams will repel since the electrostatic repulsion is stronger than the magnetic attraction.

  • $\begingroup$ Is this a theoretical statement? I agree that the way we teach (pair production and annihilation), they should. But if we measure, do they ever attract? $\endgroup$ Jun 12, 2022 at 3:11
  • $\begingroup$ @BrianCannard this is completely verified experimentally. It is an important factor in the design and operation of many particle accelerators. $\endgroup$
    – Dale
    Jun 12, 2022 at 10:26
  • $\begingroup$ can you please share a link to a peer-reviewed experimental research paper? $\endgroup$ Jun 12, 2022 at 19:00
  • $\begingroup$ This is simply one introductory example. There are many more: cds.cern.ch/record/1982426/files/331-356%20Ferrario.pdf $\endgroup$
    – Dale
    Jun 12, 2022 at 19:41
  • $\begingroup$ I 100% agree with theory. Did anyone has published an experimental observation of what happens when two parallel electron rays run near one another, with controlled interval between electrons. Nature is a very complex beast even with the known physical effects. $\endgroup$ Jun 13, 2022 at 23:01

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