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Lecture# Electromagnetic Energy and Waves

Description

This lecture covers electromagnetic energy density, Poynting vector, electromagnetic plane waves, polarization vector, electric and magnetic fields, mean values over time, and the general solution of plane waves. It also discusses the linear superposition of plane waves, dispersion relation, and the orthogonal nature of the electric and magnetic fields.

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In course

Related concepts (47)

PHYS-324: Classical electrodynamics

The goal of this course is the study of the physical and conceptual consequences of Maxwell equations.

Electromagnetic radiation

In physics, electromagnetic radiation (EMR) consists of waves of the electromagnetic (EM) field, which propagate through space and carry momentum and electromagnetic radiant energy. Types of EMR include radio waves, microwaves, infrared, (visible) light, ultraviolet, X-rays, and gamma rays, all of which are part of the electromagnetic spectrum. Classically, electromagnetic radiation consists of electromagnetic waves, which are synchronized oscillations of electric and magnetic fields.

Sinusoidal plane-wave solutions of the electromagnetic wave equation

Sinusoidal plane-wave solutions are particular solutions to the electromagnetic wave equation. The general solution of the electromagnetic wave equation in homogeneous, linear, time-independent media can be written as a linear superposition of plane-waves of different frequencies and polarizations. The treatment in this article is classical but, because of the generality of Maxwell's equations for electrodynamics, the treatment can be converted into the quantum mechanical treatment with only a reinterpretation of classical quantities (aside from the quantum mechanical treatment needed for charge and current densities).

Electromagnetic stress–energy tensor

In relativistic physics, the electromagnetic stress–energy tensor is the contribution to the stress–energy tensor due to the electromagnetic field. The stress–energy tensor describes the flow of energy and momentum in spacetime. The electromagnetic stress–energy tensor contains the negative of the classical Maxwell stress tensor that governs the electromagnetic interactions. In free space and flat space–time, the electromagnetic stress–energy tensor in SI units is where is the electromagnetic tensor and where is the Minkowski metric tensor of metric signature (− + + +).

Earth's magnetic field

Earth's magnetic field, also known as the geomagnetic field, is the magnetic field that extends from Earth's interior out into space, where it interacts with the solar wind, a stream of charged particles emanating from the Sun. The magnetic field is generated by electric currents due to the motion of convection currents of a mixture of molten iron and nickel in Earth's outer core: these convection currents are caused by heat escaping from the core, a natural process called a geodynamo.

Charge density

In electromagnetism, charge density is the amount of electric charge per unit length, surface area, or volume. Volume charge density (symbolized by the Greek letter ρ) is the quantity of charge per unit volume, measured in the SI system in coulombs per cubic meter (C⋅m−3), at any point in a volume. Surface charge density (σ) is the quantity of charge per unit area, measured in coulombs per square meter (C⋅m−2), at any point on a surface charge distribution on a two dimensional surface.