SAT Subject Physics Practice Question 636: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 636

2. How does one use the right hand rule to determine the direction of the force applied to a current carrying wire?

A. Point the fingers of the right hand in the same direction as the magnetic lines of force.
B. Point the thumb at right angles to the lines of force.
C. Point the fingers of the right hand along the wire in the direction of the current.
D. Point the thumb in the direction of the magnetic lines of force.
E. Point the fingers of the right hand against the direction of the magnetic lines of force.

Correct Answer: A

Explanation:

The correct answer is (A). The second step of the right-hand rule is appropriate to answer the question. The entire right-hand rule is restated below

i. Point the thumb of the right hand in the direction of the current or the motion of the particle.

ii. Point the fingers of the right hand in the direction of the magnetic field (toward the south pole).

iii. The palm of the right hand points in the direction of the applied force.

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