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Ferromagnetic Material

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World's Strongest Magnet
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World's Strongest Magnet

 

Credit: Roo72
Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Neodymium_magnet_lifting_spheres.jpg
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

This photo shows three solid steel balls suspended by three small magnets. It’s not a trick. The tiny magnets are actually strong enough to hold the very heavy steel balls. That’s because the magnets are made of neodymium.

News You Can Use

  • Neodymium magnets, called NIB magnets for short, can support thousands of times their own weight. They have many real-world uses, ranging from jewelry clasps to medical imaging devices.
  • Sometimes NIB magnets can be too strong for their own good. They can attract metal objects so strongly that the force of the impact causes the magnets to crack. Metal objects flying toward the magnets can also injure people. In addition, the magnets have been swallowed by children, causing serious harm.
  • Watch this video demonstration of the awesome force of a large neodymium magnet. Warning: Do not try this at home! 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVv8qWZ8xzw

Show What You Know

Learn more about neodymium magnets at the links below. Then answer the questions that follow.

  1. How big is the neodymium magnet demonstrated in the video above? How much weight can it hold?
  2. What is neodymium? What other elements are in neodymium magnets?
  3. What happens to a neodymium magnet when it is heated above 176 °F?
  4. There are many industrial uses for neodymium magnets. List at least ten other uses of these magnets.

Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: Roo72; Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Neodymium_magnet_lifting_spheres.jpg; License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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