Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Magnets :: essays research papers

Diamagnetics was discovered by Michael Faraday in 1846, but no one at the time thought that it could lead to any appreciable effects. William Thomson (Lord Kelvin), referring to levitation as the problem of "Mohamet’s coffin," had this to say: "It will obably be impossible ever to observe this phenomenon, on account of the difficulty of getting a magnet strong enough, and a diamagnetic substance sufficiently light, as the [magnetic] forces are excessively feeble." Fields strong enough to lift diamagnetic materials became available during the mid-20th century. In 1939, Werner Braunbeck levitated small beads of graphite in a vertical electromagnet. Graphite has the largest ratio c /r known for diamagnetics (8x10-5 m3/g); today, this experiment can be repeated using just a strong permanent magnet, such as one made of neodymium, iron and boron. Leaving aside superconductors (which are ideal diamagnetics), first levitated by Arkadiev in 1947, it took another fifty y rs to rediscover the possible levitation of conventional, room-temperature materials. In 1991, Eric Beaugnon and Robert Tournier magnetically lifted water and a number of organic substances. They were soon followed by others, who levitated liquid hydrog and helium and frog eggs. At the same time, Jan Kees Maan rediscovered diamagnetic levitation at the University of Nijmegen, in collaboration with Humberto Carmona and Peter Main of Nottingham University in England. In their experiments, they levitated ractically everything at hand, from pieces of cheese and pizza to living creatures including frogs and a mouse. Remarkably, the magnetic fields employed in these experiments had already been available already for several decades and, at perhaps half a d en laboratories in the world, it would have taken only an hour of work to implement room-temperature levitation. Nevertheless, even physicists who used strong magnetic fields every day in their research did not recognize the possibility. If you were to tell to a child playing with a horseshoe magnet and pieces of iron that his uncle has a much bigger magnet that can lift everything and everybody, the child would probably believe you and might even ask for a ride on the magnet. If a phy cist were to say such a thing, he or she (armed with knowledge and experience) would probably smile condescendingly. The physicist would know that only a very few materials, such as iron or nickel, are strongly magnetic. The rest of the world’s material are not; or to be precise, the rest of the world is a billion (109) times less magnetic.

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