n. A magnetic charge that acts like an electrical charge.
Electricity has a new little sister: magnetricity. A team of physicists in England has created magnetic charges — isolated north and south magnetic poles — and induced them to flow in crystals no bigger than a centimeter across.
Magnetic monopoles — magnets with only a single north or south pole — are former hypothetical particles that are now thought to exist in spin ice. There is hope among scientists that understanding these monopoles in more detail could lead to advances in a novel technology field known as 'magnetricity' — a magnetic equivalent to electricity.
However, it was recently proposed that magnetic charges can exist in certain materials in the form of emergent excitations that manifest like point charges, or magnetic monopoles. Here we address the question of whether such magnetic charges and their associated currents—'magnetricity'—can be measured directly in experiment, without recourse to any material-specific theory.