Oersted's Experiment on a Balance - Digital Download


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by Francisco J. Muller

This 6-page paper was published in Issue 63 (2005).

From the Abstract: "Two rarely asked questions about Oersted's epoch-making experiment of 1820 are formulated: (1) Are there any forces acting on the magnetized needle after it has attained its stable perpendicular direction with respect to the current bearing wire? (2) If so, do they comply with Newton's third law? Einstein's view in 1938 affirmed a departure of Oersted's experiment from the third law. A repetition of the experiment, however, performed over an electronic balance, indicates positive answers to the stated questions. Application of Ampere's original theory of 1825 agrees with the performed experiment and not with Einstein's position. Remarkably, application of currently established electromagnetic theory also agrees with the experimental results, and with Ampere, but not with Einstein."

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