How much do you know about magnets? Test your knowledge and impress your family andfriends with these 10 fascinating facts.
- In magnets, molecules are arranged so that their electrons spin in the same direction. This creates a magnet with two poles. The main material that magnets are made from is iron.
- Magnets produce a magnetic force called a magnetic field. This field is invisible to the human eye but iron fillings can be used to show these fields.
- All magnets have two ends - a north pole and a south pole. Magnetism either attracts magnetic objects or pushes them away. If the same poles of two magnets are placed near each other they push away and repel. If two different poles are placed near each other they attract and pull together.
- Magnets only attract certain types of metals including iron, steel, nickel, and cobalt. Other materials such as glass, paper, plastic, and wood are not attracted by magnets. Most metals are not attracted including copper, silver, gold, magnesium, platinum, and aluminium.
- There are many different types of magnet including air-core magnets, electromagnets, andpermanent magnets.
- The Earth is a large magnet. The Earth’s core is made up of mostly iron which gives the Earth its own magnetic field with a north magnetic pole and a south magnetic pole.
- The Earth’s magnetic field protects the Earth by deflecting solar winds, which are charged particles from the sun.
- Magnetic compasses use Earth’s magnetic field to navigate north, south, east, west.
- A collapsed star, known as a neutron star, has the strongest magnetic force of any object in the universe.
- Magnets can also be created using electricity by wrapping a wire around an iron bar and running current through the wire. This is called electromagnetism.
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