Do you know that the strongest magnet in the world can be found at your fingertips? The neodymium magnets, or neo magnets, are rare-earth metals discovered almost simultaneously by the Sumitomo Special Metals and General Motors in 1984. Little did both companies know that this discovery would revolutionise the world and be essential in many products from thereon.
The neo magnet is derived from a ferromagnetic substance called neodymium that can be magnetised in an environment with low temperature. Due to the versatility of this material, it can be manufactured in different ways and for various purposes. Here are some of the products that neo magnet can be transformed into:
Computer-related parts and equipment
Hard drives are the most popular use of Neo magnets. They are written with data through the constant magnetism and diamagnetism processes that happen. The magnets that are used in your audio equipment such as microphone and speaker are also made from neodymium.
Through this magnet, the mechanical energy in the microphone is converted into electrical energy when the sound produced moves the coil connected to the power supply. Meanwhile, the process for energy conversion in speakers is different; it is the magnet that transforms the electrical energy into mechanical energy so that the speaker cone can move and produce sound.
Neodymium’s most life-saving contribution is its utilisation in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Internal images are produced through the magnetic field instigated by the powerful neodymium. Other than this, the Neo magnet is also used in dentures. They can easily hold things, so they are often used as corrective device attachments.
Furthermore, tanning beds in beauty clinics make use of this rare-earth metal to block the infrared rays from the bulb, which allows people to lie down in tanning bed without experiencing burns. Some believers of magnetic therapy also employ neo magnets in their clinical treatments for pain relief.
Transport and electricity
Since an automotive company was one of the first ones to discover neodymium magnets, it is a given that it will be utilised in transport vehicles. One of its essential contributions to transport innovation is its roles in motors as well as generators.
Neodymium converts electrical energy to mechanical energy, which allows engines to function. The purpose of neo magnets in generators is the opposite since it converts mechanical energy to electric power.
Additionally, it is also used in the anti-lock braking system. This car and aircraft feature prevents the vehicle from skidding, thereby ensuring passenger safety. This mechanism happens through the neo magnet in the copper wire, which aids the sensor in adjusting its speed.
Common home materials
Magnets are found everywhere in your house from your door to your fixture adhesive. They are also in your light bulbs. The function of neodymium in light bulbs is to make your light whiter by counteracting the yellow light.
Do you also know that that the magnet that clasps your jewellery together? Due to its strength, a 5mm magnet is enough to hold the clasp together so that you would not lose your precious treasure.
Without a doubt, this rare-earth metal has made its way in our homes, in our cars, and our devices. They may be overlooked, but they are powerful enough to save lives. There are many more that this super magnet can do; you might be surprised as to how much contribution it has made to better our lives.