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neodymium magnets

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horseshoe magnet

History of Horseshoe Magnets

For many people, the red-blue horseshoe is a symbol of a magnet, perhaps because such magnets are often used in schools as teaching aids. Indeed, the horseshoe is very characteristic and has an incredibly interesting history. It all began in 1821 in England when the local cobbler, William Sturgeon, started experimenting with magnets. William had the desired profession of that time, as he was a cobbler, but in his free time, he was passionate about physics. This passion led him to wind a piece of iron into a U-shaped form with wire and pass an electric current through this wire. This not only marked the first appearance of the horseshoe as a magnet but also became the first electromagnet created by a human. And, importantly in this story, it was the first magnet capable of holding more weight than its mass. Sturgeon's experiments had a significant impact on the development of magnetism, although his name is unfortunately rarely mentioned. He discovered that the shape of a magnet has a significant influence on its strength. In the case of the horseshoe, the magnetic field is more concentrated between the poles due to their shorter distance. This directly translates into a greater attracting force than magnets in the shape of bars or cylinders.

Characteristics of Horseshoe Magnets

The horseshoe shape not only increases the attracting force but also significantly increases coercivity, which is resistance to demagnetization. In modern times, this is not particularly significant due to the modern materials used in magnet production. However, two centuries ago, when iron was mainly used for production, it was really important, especially for the longevity of such magnets. Horseshoe magnets are primarily made of ferrite and AlNiCo nowadays. Neodymium itself is strong enough, and there's no need to enhance its parameters through shape. You can certainly find horseshoes made from neodymium on the market, but they are mostly used for educational and demonstration purposes. This area is one of the main applications of horseshoe magnets. Due to the position of the poles, they are ideal for demonstrating the distribution of the magnetic field. Scientists also use this shape in various research to better understand the principles of magnetism. Of course, horseshoe magnets also have numerous practical applications. They are used for lifting various metal objects, from office paperclips to large metal structures in construction and industry.

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#horseshoe magnet#horseshoe-shaped magnet#magnet history

czwartek 2020-07-02T18:00:00
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