right-hand rule


Also found in: Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

right-hand rule

n. Physics
A rule that uses the shape of the right hand to establish the standard orientation of vector quantities normal to a plane, especially when calculating a vector product or the helicity of particle spin. For example, in the case of spin, the fingers of the right hand should curl in the direction of rotation; the thumb then points in the direction of the spin vector.
References in periodicals archive ?
According to classical electromagnetic theory and circuit theory, electric current in metallic wires is the flow of electrons in the wires (conductors), and a magnetic field is generated around the conducting wires according to the Right-Hand Rule. Since the TEM step travels at the speed of light towards the load, how does the current in the conducting wires keep pace with the TEM wave, if electrons cannot travel at the speed of light?
The ERC can be defined as the coordinate origin is the Earth's center [O.sub.e], the [O.sub.e][x.sub.4]-axis is along the Greenwich meridian direction in the equatorial plane, the axis of [O.sub.e][z.sub.4]-axis is along the Earth angular momentum direction, and the Oey4-axis obeys a right-hand rule. In Figure 1, P is the intersection of the beam-pointing direction and the Earth's surface, which is called the "beam center point" (BCP) in this paper, and Q is the nadir point of the satellite.
To determine the polarization of a circular antenna, the right-hand rule is used.