Rare Earth Magnets

Written by James Lyons
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When you are looking for the strongest magnets out there, you will be interested in hearing about rare earth magnets. They have come into use only in recent years. The strongest magnetic configuration the world has ever seen consists of neodymium (Nd), iron (Fe) and boron (B). The abbreviations are what you would see on the periodic table of elements. This configuration has allowed magnets to become stronger, smaller and more affordable.

There are thousands of uses for strong magnets. You don't have to have a massive job to use these. Yes, they are very good for industrial jobs such as moving cars around a junkyard. However, just having them on your refrigerator is a nice change from the old magnets. Remember the old magnets? I hate the magnets that can barely hold up two photos without sliding down the front of the fridge. With rare earth magnets, that is a problem no more.

Science Projects with Rare Earth Magnets

You can come up with some really great science projects with rare earth magnets. If you put the correct poles together (i.e., alike poles), you can make magnets levitate. Put a big magnet above a much smaller one. Hold them far enough apart so that the little one lifts off the ground a bit. If you hold them too close, the little one will go smacking into the big one; too far and the little one won't even move.

You can also do an experiment to show what a magnetic field looks like. You can get a specific liquid that moves with the magnet. As it moves you can see the exact shape of the magnetic field in three dimensions. It's very fun, and educational as well.


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