### electric field

**(E)**
(electric force as distributed over a space)

An **electric field** (conventionally termed **E** in equations)
is the tendency at each point in space
to force an electrically-charged object in a particular direction,
per Coulomb's law.
Mathematically, it is a gradient, a function on the three
dimensions of space yielding a vector in a direction along the
line of the force (which pushes objects of the two polarities
in opposite directions along the line) with
a magnitude consisting of the amount of force applied to
an object at that point per unit mass and unit electric
charge of the object.
This field is the gradient of a mathematical field,
which is termed the field of **electric potential**.

Two possible mathematical fields describe such a physical field,
so by convention, the field is such that the vectors point in the
direction that a positively-charged object is pushed. (The other possible
mathematical field would just have all the vectors in exactly the
opposite direction, showing the direction that a negatively-charged object
would be pushed.)

An *electric field* is analogous to a gravitational field,
both following inverse square laws, but incorporates
the concept of electric charge with a polarity (positive and negative)
and that each polarity attracts the other polarity but repels objects
with the same polarity.

(*electromagnetism,electricity,physics*)
**Further reading:**

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_field

**Referenced by pages:**

CMB polarization

dielectric

dipole

electron screening

electron volt (eV)

field lines

hydrodynamics

Lorentz force

magnetic dipole radiation

magnetic flux density (B)

mathematical field

Maxwell's equations

particle spectrometer

polarization modes

Poynting vector (S)

Pioneer Venus Orbiter (PVO)

spinning dust emission

suprathermal

Vlasov-Poisson equation

Index