General > General Technical Chat

Electroboom: How Right IS Veritasium?! Don't Electrons Push Each Other??

(1/148) > >>

ledtester:
This one is pretty good because Mehdi and Derek actually discuss and debate the finer theoretical  points of what current actually is.

pcprogrammer:
Does it really matter how?

I mean, for the most of us and the level we work or play with electronics the basic laws we learned in school suffice to get things working.

m k:
And if not,
an electron has a probability to be "inside" a nucleus.

And it continues,
if you look close enough you can't see anymore.
But you can still calculate what you should see.

It's quantum,
where probability is finally always 1.
But reality is always less than 1.

More mundane thing,
we know the energy is carried through the wire since it can do work, but what kind of energy.
We also know that energy is emitted and absorbed, and that emitted one is a leftover.
So when DC current is heating the wire its leftover heat has equal frequency to what AC current's leftover heat has.

aetherist:
The youtube here is mainly a waste of time. However it duzz explain a little about Mehdi's current thinking about surface charge driving internal electrons.
The youtube duznt help to explain why Veritasium reckons that the electrical energy is carried by the Poynting Vector/Field.

Anyhow, i wish to advise that electric energy is carried (primarily)(mainly)(usually) by photons flowing along the surface of the copper wire.
The flow of electrons, on the surface, & inside the copper, is a minor contribution to the total (usually).
This is certainly the case for a  lead acid battery source.

Nominal Animal:
The entire question assumes that electrons are discrete particles, but as leptons, they are not; they're firmly in the quantum realm.  As an example, many interesting and useful phenomena in semiconductors and LEDs depend on surface plasmons, something that arises from the collective QM behaviour of several/many electrons.  (As a practical example, the double-slit experiment shows exactly the same results for electrons as it does for photons.)

One of the most annoying problems in molecular dynamic simulations is in visualization, where the goal is to convey an intuitive picture of the system or what is actually happening.  The atoms are not round marbles with well defined boundaries, and electron bonds are definitely not cylindrical sticks between round marbles... It is surprising how subtly visualization choices can affect ones understanding.  Which is why I much prefer eg. cel/toon shading over photorealism, and semi-transparent isosurfaces denoting a specific electron density.  I want to control the information conveyed, so I can push the intuitive understanding towards something useful; photorealistic marble-and-stick models do not.

Simply put, we're definitely talking about quantum interactions (of both leptons (electrons) and bosons (photons), and lepton-lepton, lepton-boson, and possibly even the rare boson-boson interactions), when we are talking about current flow.  Any human-scale analogs (like "electrons 'pushing' against each other") will not describe the situation quite correctly, and will lead to misunderstandings and un-physical model ideas.