# How can energy be stored in a magnetic field?

A magnetic field can be thought of a vector field of force on electrons. Basically this can be thought of a some area that attracts or repels electrons.

It is said that inductors are able to "store energy" in a magnetic field. Similarly, reactive power is said to be "stored" in the magnetic field when AC current flows through a conductor.

How can this be possible if a magnetic field is just like some volume of force? It sounds like someone saying energy is being "stored in a gravitational field".

• It is similar to storing energy in a gravitational field, which is actually one of the main ways we store energy: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravity_battery Feb 7, 2023 at 20:12
• en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_tower Feb 7, 2023 at 20:27
• A magnetic field can be thought of a vector field of force on electrons. No. Basically this can be thought of a some area that attracts or repels electrons. No. Unthink all that. Energy is a great unifying concept in physics. If you want to find a crooked politician, follow the money. If you want to understand physics, follow the energy. Energy is stored in fields - gravitational, electrical, magnetic. I don't know how the universe does this, it just does. When you change the energy in a field, work is done, felt as a force if there's a displacement. Feb 7, 2023 at 20:34
• Feeling a great disturbance in the force... Feb 7, 2023 at 21:39
• If you pull on a spring, does it then contain stored energy? Let it go, and you'll know for sure that it certainly did. Storing energy in a magnetic field is not totally dissimilar to that. You add energy, and it pushes the field out of shape. Soon as it can, it wants to get back into that resting shape, and in doing so it releases the stored energy. Feb 8, 2023 at 0:00