# Answer to Question #66855 in Electromagnetism for Chelsea

Question #66855

In an odd twist of events, I lack a ruler but do have a pair of wires, a power supply,

and an ammeter. I know that if I run a current through the wires I can balance the

downward force of gravity on the top wire with the repulsive magnetic force between

them. I know the weight per unit length of the wires is 0.15 N/m. I can use the power

supply and the ammeter to choose the current (assumed to be the same current in

each wire). What value of current should I choose to make the distance between the

two wires equal to exactly 1.00 cm? Note that these are parallel wires and not a single

wire in an external magnetic field.

and an ammeter. I know that if I run a current through the wires I can balance the

downward force of gravity on the top wire with the repulsive magnetic force between

them. I know the weight per unit length of the wires is 0.15 N/m. I can use the power

supply and the ammeter to choose the current (assumed to be the same current in

each wire). What value of current should I choose to make the distance between the

two wires equal to exactly 1.00 cm? Note that these are parallel wires and not a single

wire in an external magnetic field.

Expert's answer

The force between two wires can be divided as F = 2m0*I1*I2/(4*3.14*r), or I = sqrt(2*3.14*r*F/(m0)) = 87 A

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