Why it’s worth paying attention to the non-magnetic materials
Non-magnet metals are among the most valuable metals in the world.
They are used in all sorts of things, from smartphones to solar panels.
But unlike most metals, which are magnetically stable, non-metal materials tend to lose their magnetic properties over time, and are prone to cracking.
For years, researchers have focused on studying non-metallic materials, hoping to develop a way to store them in a more durable form.
Now a team led by Dr. Richard J. Anderson of the University of Toronto has found a way around this problem.
Anderson and his colleagues report that they have successfully applied a non-degradable, nonmagnetic non-coil, or a “non-magical metal conductor” to copper.
The researchers have dubbed the nonfibrous metal “nonfibre”, and describe their work in the March 2 issue of Science Advances.
It’s a novel material that, in a sense, mimics the properties of the nonmagnet elements found in metals like gold and silver.
“The key is that this material is very easy to work with, easy to produce, and easy to store,” says Anderson.
“It’s basically a high-performance nonmagical conductor that we can manufacture very cheaply.”
The non-fibres have properties that mimic the properties found in gold and other metals.
When exposed to high temperatures, nonfiber materials undergo a transition to the more stable metal, called an anode, and then back to the solid metal the material is made of.
The team’s findings suggest that nonfibrils are an ideal material for storing magnetic energy.
“This is really the first nonmag-metal material that has been identified that is highly magnetic, very high-temperature conductive, and very strong in a high conductivity mode,” Anderson says.
“You don’t have to be a high school physics major to understand this.
You just have to understand how to work it.”
In other words, the team has found that non-silver metal is very attractive to magnetic fields.
And non-platinum, nonferrous, nonmetal materials can be used to store energy, as well.
“There are a number of applications that we are currently investigating,” Anderson adds.
“We think the use of nonferous materials to store magnetic energy could be the key to storing it in the future.”
The researchers plan to test their non-electronic devices with their nonfIBres and to conduct further experiments to determine whether or not their material is suitable for energy storage.
“In the future, we will be looking at different applications, both in applications that involve energy storage but also applications that have to do with solar panels, for example,” Anderson explains.
“If we can get this material into the devices that we want, we’ll have a lot of different applications that can use it.”
The paper describing the work was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the Natural Science and Engineering Medal (NSEM).
The research was conducted at the University at Buffalo, and is available online. Related: