At what speed do electrons move in metals? Compare it to the speed of light.

1. In any metal there are free electrons. Using the Fermi-Dirac distribution (quantum mechanics, the average kinetic energy is calculated, and the average velocity is calculated from it), it was calculated that the speed of free electrons in the intervals between collisions is about 1,000,000 m / s, i.e. 10 ^ 6 m / s. The speed of light in vacuum, 380,000,000 m / s, i.e. 380 * 10 ^ 6 m / s. Therefore, approximately 300-400 times the speed of free electrons.
2. With ordered movement, voltage is applied at the speed of light. Noticed, as soon as he clicked the switch – the light came on. From this, the erroneous conclusion is drawn that electrons move very quickly when passing current. No, it is not. The speed of electrons is about 1 cm / sec, even less. 1 cm / s = 0.01 m / s * 3600/3600 s = 0.036 km / h.

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