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$1 Magnet vs $700 Magnet



Some magnets are more, uh, magnetic than others? 

Yes some magnets have a stronger magnetic force than others. Iron, nickel and cobalt atoms have more electrons orbiting in one direction than the other. This means they produce smaller currents like electromagnets. However, ferromagnetic metals like iron, nickel and cobalt like to line up into larger areas. These areas will line up, north to south like any other magnet if you put them in a strong magnetic field. You can even line up these areas yourself, maybe you've done this before, you take an actual magnet and rub it one way across a ferrous material like a paperclip, and in doing so you will line up the inside structure of the clip, making it a little magnetic for a while until it gets jumbled up again. With very strong magnets, like rare earth magnets, the structure of the alloy tends to make it very hard to change the direction of the magnetic field. This means that more of them stay lined up, and you get a stronger magnet.

So leave the heavy lifting to the rare earth magnet neodymium magnets and maybe just keep the fridge magnets around to hold up your physics grade sheet...


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