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Image 4: The Ring Experiment (Williams)

Electro-Magnetic Induction

Some of the major achievements of Michael Faraday were obtained by conducting fairly elementary experiments. Such experiments include the ring experiment. This experiment led Faraday to publish the theory of electromagnetic induction (the idea that "a changing magnetic field generates a current (Hecht)").

In 1831, Faraday conducted an experiment using an iron ring (7/8 of an inch in thickness, and six inches in diameter), two coils, a battery and a galvanometer in order to determine whether a magnetic field could create an electric field. In this experiment, one coil was wound around side A of the iron ring and attached at the ends to the positive and negative poles of a battery. The other coil was then wrapped around side B of the ring (it’s ends were attached to the galvanometer).

The battery is then activated, and passes a current around solenoid A. This current makes the ring act as a magnet and sends an electric field along solenoid B, which is registered by the galvanometer.