Author

Matt Newby

04/04/2014
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What are eddy currents and why do they make a magnet fall slowly through a copper pipe

  Magnets are fascinating – there are many things about magnets for which the only explanation seems to be magic! The best place to find out about magnet-related phenomena is of course here, on our blog – and YouTube. The most viewed videos showing super-strong magnets falling through copper pipes alone have amassed an incredible 8 million views and counting. What you are seeing in these videos is of course a demonstration of eddy currents in action. Here we will explain what is going on.

20/02/2014

How to magnetise a screwdriver

If you are trying to fix a screw in a hard to reach place or are working with small, fiddly screws a magnetised screwdriver can save you lots of time. Most new, high-end screwdrivers are supplied already magnetised, but sometimes they can lose their magnetism. There are a number of ways you can use magnets to remagnetise a screwdriver, or magnetise one that was never magnetised in the first place.

06/01/2014

Magnets and medicine

Magnets and medical research have a long and interconnected history. Life-saving diagnosis is made possible by MRI scanners that rely on the power of magnets, magnetic technology has a vital role in some of the most pioneering medical research and many believe in the opinion-splitting therapeutic benefits of magnets. This post will look at all three areas.

17/12/2013

All about the Earth’s magnetic field

The Earth behaves like one large magnet; we know this for certain because of the visible effects on a magnetic compass by the Earth’s magnetic field. In 1600 William Gilbert was the first physician to publish his findings on the Earth’s magnetic field and a hypothesis for its origin in his book titled de Magnete.

29/11/2013

How does an electric motor work?

By understanding how an electric motor works you can learn a lot about magnetism and its relationship with electricity, and what better way to learn how a motor works than by building your own basic motor. But first, a little about the fundamentals of electricity and magnetism.

21/11/2013

Flippin’ incredible – the story of the sun’s magnetic field reversal

We’re on the verge of a once in an eleven year solar event that sounds as impossible as it does fascinating, if not a little menacing – a solar field reversal. More specifically, a complete reversal of the sun’s polar magnetic field which means that its magnetic north and south poles will change places entirely.

15/11/2013

How a speaker works

This blog post will look at how a speaker works and how you can make your own basic speaker. Every audio speaker uses permanent magnets whether the speaker is in your car, in your stereo, your earphones or your smartphone. Permanent magnets provide the force that makes the component in the speaker that creates the sound, move.

10/11/2013

Magnetic levitation

When we talk about magnetic levitation what we are referring to is an object suspended by magnetic pressure which counteracts the effects of gravity. It generates images of large futuristic objects hovering and travelling at high-speeds.

24/10/2013
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How to get neodymium magnets from a hard drive

Neodymium magnets are the strongest in the world, that’s why they can be pricey. If you have an old hard drive (one you won’t ever need again), you can dismantle it to retrieve the neodymium magnets inside. Here I will give you a step-by-step guide for taking apart a computer hard drive.

17/10/2013
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Animal magnetism – Nature’s own satellite navigation system

The Earth produces its own magnetic field, which emanates from its magnetic inner iron core. On the Earth’s surface the magnetic field is extremely weak compared to the permanent magnets used in many every day appliances. At the magnetic poles the Earth’s magnetic field is approximately 0.7 Gauss compared to the Gauss value of a relatively small 10mm diameter x 5mm thick N42 neodymium magnet which can reach 5100 Gauss. It is this magnetic field that makes a compass point north but for many species, the Earth’s magnetic field has... Read More