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Illustration Spiral motion of an electron in a magnetic field

Spiral motion of an electron in a magnetic field
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An electron moves with velocity \(v\) at an angle to the homogeneous magnetic field \(B\). The electron has a velocity component perpendicular \(v_\perp\) and parallel \( v_{||}\) to the magnetic field. The perpendicular velocity component causes a circular motion with radius \(r\) and the parallel velocity component causes a motion along magnetic field lines. The total motion is a spiral path.

The spiral path has the pitch \(h\) - this is the distance the electron travels in the magnetic field direction during one period.