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Can the diffrent shape of magnets affect the magnetic strength? If so, how?
- Patrick (age 12)
Abington, Pa, USA
Yes, the shape of the magnet can have a small effect on the strength of
the magnet. A pointy magnet can focus more of its strength into the the
"pointy end". But the real strength of the magnet comes from the
material. A more magnetic material will make a stronger magnet.
Changing the shape will only let you focus a little more of that
strength into a smaller area.
Take, for example, a magnet that's shaped like a donut. If you put
something right in the middle of the donut, the magnetic field from all
different directions will cancel out and it'll be like the magnet
wasn't there at all. But outside the donut, the strength is different.
It also depends on how close you are to the magnet. The farther you are
away, the less difference it will make. This makes sense, if you think
about it, since the farther you are away from the magnet, the more it
looks like a tiny magnetic 'dot', and the shape stops mattering as
(republished on 07/13/06)
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