Electric Field Visualization Software (EM Field)

This summer, I’m at Arizona State University taking a modeling instruction workshop in physics – electricity and magnetism.  In dealing with electric fields (vectors and lines), potential, and equipotential lines, the curriculum materials rely on EM Field software that hasn’t been updated in many years and is no longer available for purchase or download.  The program is a 16-bit windows-95 era program and won’t even run anymore on Windows 7. 

So, I set out to try to build a similar simulation with the same functionality online to make it available to other teachers.

Check it out and leave me your feedback about what works, what doesn’t work, and any suggestions for improvement.

The following student-exploration worksheet is based on Unit 1 – Worksheet 3a from the Modeling E&M materials, but I thought I would provide it here in case teachers wanted to use it.  The directions are not very refined, but it is a start.

E&M Unit 1 Worksheet 4a – Web-based EM Field version

  1. Stephen

    I am so happy I found this.  We have been waiting to update some physics lab machines to Windows 7 because using something like DotBot is so clunky and not student friendly.  This solves to many problems!!  Thank you so much.  
    Physics Education 
    Lab Coordinator 
    University of Arkansas 

  2. Deb

    I was using your EM Field this morning. I have a question. If I use the button that has a vertical line on it to add charges, is this an infinite Line of charge tool or an infinite sheet of charge tool?

    • Jason

      It is just a line of charges (EM Field visualizes a 2-D plane — not 3-D space). It only approximates an infinite line–it extends well beyond the viewport, but it is actually a finite line.

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