The Galilean limits of Maxwell's equations
Abstract
We show that if Maxwell's equations are expressed in a form independent of specific units, at least three Galilean limits can be extracted. The electric and magnetic limits can be regarded as nonrelativistic limits because they are obtained using the condition v≪c and restrictions on the magnitudes of the sources and fields. The third limit is called the instantaneous limit and is introduced by letting c →∞. The electric and instantaneous limits have the same form, but their interpretation is different because the instantaneous limit cannot be considered as a nonrelativistic limit. We emphasize the double role that the speed of light c plays in Maxwell's equations.
 Publication:

American Journal of Physics
 Pub Date:
 October 2010
 DOI:
 10.1119/1.3442798
 arXiv:
 arXiv:1012.1068
 Bibcode:
 2010AmJPh..78.1048H
 Keywords:

 Maxwell equations;
 physics education;
 41.00.00;
 Electromagnetism;
 electron and ion optics;
 Physics  Classical Physics
 EPrint:
 Am. J. Phys. 78, 10481055 (2010)