physics (Right Hand Rule Question)

A proton traveling due east in a region that contains only a magnetic field experiences a vertically upward force away from the surface of the earth. What is the direction of the magnetic field?

a)North
b)East
c)South
d)West
e)Down

I know I need to use the right hand rule to find out the answer is South; but I am terrible with it. So I don't really get it, I thought I had to face the palm of my hand in the direction of the force and my fingers would point in the magnetic field.

An explanation would be nice.

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  1. So, take your right hand and point in the direction of the proton. So, point your thumb to the right. Now when you do that, look at your other fingers--specifically the way they curl. Your fingers should curl towards you. And since your thumb represents east, and you know the directions on a compass rose, the direction close to your body and the curled fingers would be South. Check this website--it should explain it better than I have!

    Look at the Right Hand Rule Diagram about halfway down the page. It is quite helpful.

    hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/magnetic/magfor.html

    Hope this helps!

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