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Electricity and Magnetism

Discover what powers the devices you use, from your toaster to your cell phone.

Each day, you interact with tens, if not hundreds, of electrical devices, from the light in your kitchen to the computer, tablet or phone you are using right now. In this course, you will discover the physical laws of electricity and magnetism that let these devices perform their designed functions.

Throughout this course, you will have opportunities to observe the principles of electricity and magnetism in action via demos that we handpicked and filmed. The focus, here, is on the physical observations that inspired Maxwell's famous field equations, which tell us how electric and magnetic fields operate across the universe.



Concepts and

  1. 1


    Everything electrical or magnetic begins with a charge.

    1. Unlocking Electricity

      A few powerful observations were the key to our modern electric world.

    2. The Sand Grain Analogy

      The push and pull of electric charges is invisible until you dig down into the matter around you.

    3. A Sticky Situation

      Harvest billions of electrons with nothing but a roll of scotch tape.

    4. Net Charge

      Ben Franklin discovered charge balance, and so can you. ($100 not included)

  2. 2

    Electric Fields

    Doing the heavy lifting in your electrical devices.

    1. Included with
      Brilliant Premium

      What are Fields?

      Can we think about electric force without tracking a trillion particles? The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind.

    2. Included with
      Brilliant Premium

      Charges on a String

      Graduate from electric forces to electric fields, and unlock the power of superposition.

    3. Included with
      Brilliant Premium

      Ions in Solution

      Mobile electrons carried telegrams across the Atlantic, can you get them across this glass of saltwater?

    4. Included with
      Brilliant Premium

      Parallel Charged Plates

      Exploit superposition to measure the charge of the electron, and build the great grandparent of solid state drives.