Electricity & Megnetism

Property of magnets

Magnets are pieces of iron ore, magnetite, capable of attracting iron objects.

We know that in the past, phenomena that were directly associated with an iron ore ( magnetite ), which has the property of attracting iron objects, were called magnetic phenomena . These pieces of magnetite are now called magnets.
At first, electrical and magnetic phenomena were studied separately. But after a series of experiments carried out, it was noticed that there was a connection between them and that the two effects, electric and magnetic, were produced by the same entity: the electric charge .

Some properties of magnets

The first fact observed was that they are capable of attracting iron objects. The second was that it was possible to transfer to iron bodies the same property as magnets.

It was found that this ability to attract iron objects seems to be concentrated in two points. This fact is verified by bringing a bar-shaped magnet close to the iron filings, as it is perceived to be concentrated at the ends of the magnet.

We call the extreme regions of a magnet poles, because of another observed fact: when we suspend a bar-shaped magnet by its center, as shown in the figure below, so that it is free to move, we perceive that it is oriented approximately in the north-south direction.

Thanks to this property, they were able to create the compass , an instrument widely used to this day, built basically by a small diamond-shaped magnet, capable of rotating around an axis.

Another perceived property was that there are forces between the magnets. Thus, it was found that poles with the same name repel each other and poles with different names attract each other.

When breaking a magnet, another property was observed: the inseparability of the poles. Breaking a magnet into more pieces will always find new magnets with two poles.

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