Finally, researchers were able to
discover a magnetic equivalent to that of electricity, where, single magnetic
charges could interact and behave like electrical ones. Using magnetic
monopoles that are found in unique ice crystals are used. This is the first
time something like this has been done.
According to the team, the monopoles
combine to form "magnetic current" that is very similar to
electricity. Only the movement of electrons generated electric current, where the
magnetic poles are allowed to move freely. They’ve named this phenomenon as "magnetricity",
which can be used in computing or magnetic storage. Though there are protons
and neutrons, which carry positive and negative electric charges, there were no
materials that carried magnetic charges. Instead, every magnet by itself has a
north and south pole.
In September 2009, two different
research groups identified monopoles - "particles" that carry
magnetic charge. However, they are only found in spin ice crystals. These
crystals are made of pyramids of charged ions, or atoms that when cooled down
to really low temperatures, show discrete and tiny packets of magnetic charge.
One team also showed how magnetic current can be created just like electric
current, by moving electrons.
Spin ice is a substance, which does not
have just one single minimal-energy state. In other words, it has "spin"
freedom degrees, whereas, it is a magnet that has different interactions that
prevent it from freezing fully. They have lower temperature and their residual
entropy is very similar to that of crystalline water ice. Well known materials
with such properties include holmium titanate and dysprosium titanate.
However, Professor Bramwell said that this
discovery will in no way replace, or be touted as an alternative to
electricity. Instead, this energy is for a different purpose and could be used
in improving computing experience and power.
California, Stanford Magnets has been involved in the R&D and sales of
Neodymium magnets and SmCo magnets, ceramic magnets, flexible magnets and
magnetic assemblies since the mid of 1980s. We supply all these types of
magnets in a wide range of shapes, sizes and grades.