Electric Currents cause Magnetic Fields used in Induction Engines

In induction engines, electrical energy is transformed into mechanical energy using magnets. The basic principle behind this energy conversion is the force of an magnetic field acting on magnets setting them in motion. The magnetic field itself is produced by electric currents along windings, i.e. coils of conducting wires. Isn’t this strange?

Flowing electric charges cause magnetic fields?! Aren’t they supposed to cause electric fields? The general phonomenon that electric currents can cause magnetic fields was discovered by Hans Christian Oersted in 1820. Vice-versa, Michael Faraday found that changing time-varying magnetic fields can create electric currents in conducting wires and that the highes coupling efficiency can be observed, if the wires are wound up in coils. Nevertheless, any current along a wire will cause a magnetic field, even for a straight one.
So there is a deep connection between electric and magnetic fields which finally leads to electromagnetic waves. This deep connection, realized by James Maxwell around 1874 in his famous equations, is applied in induction motors which function as it is very well explained on wikipedia.
Cécile

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