Potential, Field and Interactions of Multipole Spheres: Coated Spherical Magnets
We show that the energy, force, and torque between two spherically symmetric multipole density distributions are identical to those between two point multipoles, and apply this point-sphere equivalence to coated spherical dipole magnets. We also show that the potential and field of such a distribution are equivalent to those due to point multipoles located at the center of the distribution. We expand the inverse-distance potential in terms of harmonic (Hermite irreducible) tensors, whose properties enable us to express the potential energy, force, and torque for two arbitrary source distributions in a series of point-multipole interactions. This work generalizes recent work on interactions between uniformly magnetized dipole spheres [B. F. Edwards, D. M. Riffe, J.-Y. Ji, and W. A. Booth, Am. J. Phys. 85, 130 (2017)] to interactions between spherically-symmetric multipole spheres.