Hello all,

I am new to the forum.  Some years ago, I wrote a Turbo C app that models a charge traveling on an antenna which develops a standing wave.  I didn't know enough about electric magnetic radiation to understand the phase relationship between the E and B fields.

So here are my questions.  I originally sent this as an email to Mr. Fu-Kwun, and he suggested I post this in the forum where all could share in the knowledge. 


I have an EE background which has taught me that currents and voltages are always 90 degrees out of phase when inductive of capacitive devices are involved.  I understand that a peak change in current will introduce a peak change in voltage.  For sinusoidal currents, the peak change is on the positive and negative going slopes.  So the peak voltage is at the zero crossing of the current.

So do radio waves work the same way?  And if so, why are the magnetic and electric fields shown in phase in the animated graphics?

Or is this a general relativity question?  Does the transformation one energy from one field into another take time to occur?  Is time for this to transfer just equal to the time it takes the wave (event) to travel forward, so even though the fields are transferring energy at 90 degrees apart, the time for the new field to form (90 degrees) is equal to the time if takes for the fields to exist (propagate) in space.

And if this is true, does this explain why the waves travel forward, each field pushing the other in the only direction it can go (orthogonal to the field fronts) forward.  Are they steered this way?  Is this why they are waves in the first place?  Is it because the magnetic and electric fields are in phase?  And they can only exist in phase in space and cannot exist in phase in a wire?