Magnetics Business & Technology - Winter 2015 - (Page 13)
RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
Tiny Magnets Mimic Steam, Water and Ice
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) have created a synthetic material out of 1 billion tiny magnets. Astonishingly, it now
appears that the magnetic properties of this so-called metamaterial
change with the temperature, so that it can take on different states,
just like water has a gaseous, liquid and a solid state. This material
made of nanomagnets might well be refined for electronic applications of the future, such as for more efficient information transfer.
A synthetic material, created from 1 billion nanomagnets, assumes different aggregate states depending on the temperature:
the so-called metamaterial exhibits phase transitions, much like
those between steam, water and ice. This effect was observed by
a team of researchers headed by Laura Heyderman from PSI. "We
were surprised and excited," said Heyderman. "Only complex systems are able to display phase transitions." And as complex systems
can provide new kinds of information transfer, the result of the new
study also reveals that the PSI researchers' metamaterial would be
a potential candidate here.
The major advantage of the synthetic metamaterial is that it
can be customized virtually freely. While the individual atoms in a
natural material cannot be rearranged with pinpoint precision on
such a grand scale, the researchers say that this is possible with
Honeycomb of Nanomagnets
The magnets are 63 nanometers long and shaped roughly like
grains of rice. The researchers used an advanced technique to place
1 billion of these tiny grains on a flat substrate to form a large-scale
PSI researchers have created a magnetic metamaterial made of long
nanomagnets, arranged in a flat, honeycomb pattern. The arrangement of magnetisation in the synthetic material assumed very different states at different temperatures - just like molecules in ice are
more ordered than in water, and are in turn more ordered in water
than in steam. (Image: PSI/Luca Anghinolfi)
honeycomb pattern. The nanomagnets covered a total area of five
by five millimeters.
Thanks to a special measuring technique, the scientists initially
studied the collective magnetic behavior of their metamaterial at
Magnetic field measurement
www.agence-arca.com - Photo: Scott Maxwell, Jeremyculpdesign
THM1176: The world's most compact 3-axis
A selection of five probes measure from nanoteslas
to 14 T, and get into the smallest of gaps:
* THM1176-MF: general-purpose up to 3 T.
* THM1176-LF: millitesla fringe ﬁelds.
* THM1176-HF: superconducting magnets to 14 T.
* THM1176-HFC: sub-millimeter gaps.
* TFM1186: nanotesla-range perturbations.
Powered by USB, with your own computer or
an optional handheld, and with sophisticated
analysis software, including spectral analysis.
that are out of this world!
Magnetic precision has a name
Winter 2015 * Magnetics Business & Technology
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Magnetics Business & Technology - Winter 2015
What the Heck Happened to the Magnet Industry?
An Introduction to Resonant Inductive Power Transfer
Research & Development
Magnetics 2016: Preview
2016 Resource Guide
Marketplace / Advertising Index
Spontaneous Thoughts: Small Ball
Magnetics Business & Technology - Winter 2015