The magnetism in air, gases, and non-magnetic bodies, being assumed to be that of the ether, this medium shows no such effects as those we get with the ring. It does not become permanently polarized, as does even soft iron under the condition of a closed ring. The iron possesses coercive force, or magnetic rigidity, and a steel ring would show more of it. The molecules of the iron or steel take a set. If we were to cut the soft iron ring, or separate it in any way, this introduction of resistance of air for ether in the magnetic circuit would cause the lines to collapse and set up a current in the conductor. The energy of the ring would have been restored to the latter. The curious thing is that physically the polarized ring does not present any different appearance or ordinary properties different from those of a plain ring, and will not deflect a compass needle. Its condition is discoverable, however, by the test of self-induction to currents of different direction. As a practical consideration, we may mention in this connection that a self-inductive coil for currents of one direction must be constructed differently from one to be used with alternating currents.

The former must have in its magnetic circuit a section of air or the like, or be an imperfectly closed circuit, as it were. The latter should have as perfectly closed a magnetic circuit as can be made. We see here also the futility of constructing a Ruhmkorff core coil on the closed iron magnetic circuit plan, because the currents in the primary are interrupted, not reversed.

The considerations just put forward in relation to the closed iron ring, and its passive character under the condition of becoming polarized, are more important than at first appears. It has been found that the secondary current wave of a closed iron circuit induction coil or transformer, whose primary circuit receives alternating current, is lagged from its theoretical position of 90 degrees behind the primary wave an additional 90 degrees, so that the phases of the two currents are directly opposed; or the secondary current working lamps only in its circuit is one half a wave length behind a primary, instead of a quarter wave length, as might have been expected.

But when it is understood that the iron core polarized in one direction by the primary impulse does not begin to lose its magnetism when that impulse simply weakens, but waits until an actual reversal of current has taken place, it will be seen that the secondary current, which can only be produced when magnetic lines are leaving the core and cutting the secondary coil, or when the lines are being evolved and passing into the core from the primary coil, will have a beginning at the moment the primary reverses, will continue during the flow of that impulse, and will end at substantially the same time with the primary impulse, provided the work of the secondary current is not expended in overcoming self-induction, which would introduce a further lag. Moreover, the direction of the secondary current will be opposite to that of the primary, because the magnetic circuits which are opened up by the primary current in magnetizing the core, or which are closed or collapsed by it in demagnetizing the core, will always cut the secondary coil in the direction proper for this result.

Transformers of the straight core type with very soft iron in the cores and not too high rates of alternation should approximate more nearly the theoretical relation of primary and secondary waves, because the magnetic changes in the core are capable of taking place almost simultaneously with the changes of strength of the primary current. This fact also has other important practical and theoretical bearings.

Magnetism In Its Relation To Induced Electromotive 711 5e Fig. 7.

Let us assume a plain iron core, Fig. 7, magnetized as indicated, so that its poles, N, S, complete their magnetic circuits by what is called free field or lines in space around it. Let a coil of wire be wound thereon as indicated. Now assume that the magnetism is to be lost or cease, either suddenly or slowly. An electric potential will be set up in the coil, and if it has a circuit, work or energy will be produced or given out in that circuit, and in any other inductively related to it. Hence the magnetic field represents work or potential energy. But to develop potential in the wire the lines must cut the wire. This they can do by collapsing or closing on themselves. The bar seems, therefore, to lose its magnetism by gaining it all, and in doing so all the external lines of force moving inward cut the wire. The magnetic circuits shorten and short-circuit themselves in the bar, perhaps as innumerable molecular magnetic circuits interior to the iron medium. To remagnetize the bar we may pass an electric current through the coil.

The small closed circuits are again distended, the free field appears, and the lines moving outward cut across the wire coil opposite to the former direction and produce a counter potential in the wire, and consequent absorption of the energy represented in the free field produced. As before studied, the magnetism cannot disappear without giving out the energy it represents, even though the wire coil be on open circuit, and therefore unable to discharge that energy. The coil open-circuited is static, not dynamic. In such assumed case the lines in closing cut the core and heat it. Let us, however, laminate the core or subdivide it as far as possible, and we appear to have cut off this escape for the energy. This is not really so, however. We have simply increased the possible rate of speed of closure, or movement of the lines, and so have increased for the divided core the intensity of the actions of magnetic friction and local currents in the core, the latter still receiving the energy of the magnetic circuit. This reasoning is based on the possibility in this case of cutting off the current in the magnetizing coil and retaining the magnetic field. This is of itself probably impossible with soft iron.