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    Can someone explain in simple terms what a magnet is? Cos whilst I'm doing my a-levels if I can't get to grips of what a magnet is then I have no hope of understanding magnetic fields.

    I understand that a north pole attracts south and so fourth. But I don't understand why? What is it about the poles that are different? EXPLAIN.
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    Not to be rude or anything, but this is a stupid thing to post on some academic help section. Why not just research it yourself or look on wikipedia? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnet
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    (Original post by Zezzy)
    Not to be rude or anything, but this is a stupid thing to post on some academic help section. Why not just research it yourself or look on wikipedia? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnet
    The definition A magnet (from Greek ???????? ????? magn?tis líthos, Magnesian stone) is a material or object that produces a magnetic field. is not in the slightest helpful!!
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    ****ing magnets, how do they work !?
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    (Original post by Krov)
    ****ing magnets, how do they work !?
    You *******, I was JUST about to post that :sad:

    Rep-worthy regardless
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    (Original post by Krov)
    ****ing magnets, how do they work !?
    Argh! Beat me to it...Have a nice day .
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    I believe you should open a text book OP.
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    Magnetism on the macroscopic scale (e.g. bar magnets) arises from electric currents, for example an electron moving around an atom will induce a magnetic moment (it's the same principle as magnetic induction); and also from the intrinsic magnetic moments of the particles that the magnet is made from. You can think of a magnetic moment as a vector pointing in the direction of the north pole. Usually, these moments all point in different directions and so the overall average effect is that there is no magnetic moment. However if you apply a magnetic field to the material, the individual magnetic moments will tend to line up with the field and so you have an overall magnetisation.

    As for what a magnetic moment actually *is*, I'm not sure. I think it's like asking what charge is, or what mass is. I don't know if you can say what it is because it's a pretty fundamental thing.
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    (Original post by SmileyGurl13)
    The definition A magnet (from Greek ???????? ????? magn?tis líthos, Magnesian stone) is a material or object that produces a magnetic field. is not in the slightest helpful!!
    I agree, but if you actually read the rest of it, it probably gives you more information on magnets and how they work than anyone here could explain.
 
 
 
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