You currently have JavaScript disabled on this browser/device. JavaScript must be enabled in order for this website to function properly.

ZingPath: Electric Current and Electromagnetic Force

Electric Motor

Searching for

Electric Current and Electromagnetic Force

Learn in a way your textbook can't show you.
Explore the full path to learning Electric Current and Electromagnetic Force

Lesson Focus

Electric Motor

Physical Science

Learning Made Easy

In an experiment, learners will construct a simple electric motor and will observe how different factors affect the motor’s coil rotation.

Over 1,200 Lessons: Get a Free Trial | Enroll Today

Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Explain that in an electric motor, the greater the voltage, the greater the motor’s rotational speed.
  • Explain that in an electric motor, the direction of the current affects the rotational direction of the motor’s coil.
  • Explain that in an electric motor, the magnetic strength affects the rotational speed of the motor’s coil.

Everything You'll Have Covered

Electric motors can be found almost anywhere. There are many types of electric motors, from small portable devices, household appliances, workshop machine tools to industrial type machines used on larger scales. The basic factors that make an electric motor work are electricity and magnetism. The observations that an electric current produces a magnetic field and a change in a magnetic field can produce an electric current shows the relationship between electricity and magnetism.

In simple electric motors, magnets are used to help create motion. Every magnet has two poles called the north and south poles. The fundamental components of magnetism are that the opposite poles attract and the similar poles repel one another. Therefore, if two magnets were placed near one another and the north poles were facing each other, the two magnets would repel one another, and the same would hold true if both magnets faced each other with their south poles. But, when the north and south poles of two magnets are placed near one another, they become attracted to each other and create motion. However, the magnetic force (movement) does depend on the distance between the magnets.

In addition, it is essential to understand the fundamental concepts of electromagnetism. When an electric current is passed though a wire (by means of a battery or generator), a magnetic field is created around the wire. In a motor, the magnets either attract or repel the forces causing the coil to spin in a rotational motion due to the electromagnet field. In other words, force is being expelled causing the coils to move.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 25 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts electricity, magnetism
Course Physical Science
Type of Tutorial Experiment
Key Vocabulary circuit, coil, counter