# What is magnetism?

Basically, magnetism is the force that causes a nail or paper clip to be pulled toward a magnet. Play around with a magnet and you'll quickly see magnetism in action! Magnetism is the force generated by any moving charged particle or charged particles. A magnetic field is the result of the motion of a charged particle or charged particles, and this field is generated in no other way. Any time a charged particle moves, it creates a magnetic field around its path of travel. There are no exceptions that we know of. Magnetism is a term that speaks to the phenomenon associated with a magnetic field and with its action on other things. The creation of a magnetic field by a moving charge or moving charges is this fundamental concept that is behind the term electromagnetic force, which is one of the four fundamental forces in the universe. Electricity and magnetism are tied together inextricably because of this. This leads to other ideas directly associated with magnetism. Though any (every) moving charge generates a magnetic field, it is the movement of electrons that we most commonly consider. If enough electrons are moving in a uniform way in a group of atoms, it will give rise to an "external" magnetic field, and we call this a magnetic domain. It could be one atom or, as suggested, a group of them, but the key is the uniform motion of "enough" electrons to create the domain. This phenomena, that of magnetic domains, appears in ferromagnetic materials like iron. The domains are there. And if we perform some kind of operation to align a gross quantity of these domains, it will permit us to have a magnet. A permanent magnet is a piece of ferromagnetic material that has had its magnetic domains aligned under controlled conditions. The material is generally heated and exposed to a magnetic field. The field is held in place until the material is cooled so the magnetic domains are "locked in place" where they are. In an electromagnetic, we use electricity (moving electrons) to create a magnetic field. The wire for the electromagnet is wound around a ferromagnetic core, and when a direct current is run through the wire, the "uniform" motion of those electrons creates a magnetic field around each turn of the wire, and, because the windings are all "side by side" in the device, the fields are added to create the big external field. Any way you cut it, it takes a moving charge or moving charges to create a magnetic field, and magnetism is the phenomenon associated with the existence of a magnetic field or with the interaction of a magnetic field with other materials or even other magnetic fields. Links are provide below for more information.
Magnetism is a group of physical actions between magnets.

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