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Q & A: EMF, Potential Difference, Terminal Potential?

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Most recent answer: 08/10/2009
Q:
WHAT IS EMF,POTENTIAL DIFFERENCE, TERMINAL POTENTIAL?
- navneet kaur
chennai, india
A:
These are all different names for the same thing:  i.e. what you measure with a Voltmeter.

LeeH

I think EMF is a little more general. You can't have a potential difference between a point and itself. You can have an EMF around a loop coming back to the same point, if the magnetic flux through the loop is changing. So EMF's include these pushes on charges that come from changing magnetic fields, not just the ones due to potential differences. The potential part of the voltmeter reading only cares where the voltmeter probes are. The EMF part cares what sort of loop is formed by the probes, the wires, and the meter.

(I think Lee finds this addendum to be pointless quibbling.)

Mike W.

(published on 08/10/2009)

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