Magnetic Deflection of Electrons and Protons

Most recent answer: 05/15/2008

Q:
Which particle is deflected most in a magnetic field, a proton or an electron?
- Louise Grima (age 44)
Malta
A:
The deflection of a charged particle by a magnetic field is proportional to its electric charge and to its velocity.   The deflection is also inversely proportional to its mass.   So given a proton and an electron going at the same velocity in a magnetic field and having equal (but opposite) electric charge the electron will deflect much more since the ratio of the masses is 1836.

LeeH

(published on 05/15/2008)

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