technical help

Glossary

Magnetic terminology can be a little daunting, here we've listed some information which we hope will be useful and give some insight into terms used when discussing magnets and magnetic material.

Magnetic Material & Magnets

In general, people understand the concept of magnetics and what magnetic material or a magnet is.

For new customers or new enquiries we will ask you about the intended application to determine which variant of our magnets or magnetic material is best suited to your requirement.
We supply and manufacture flexible magnetic material, sintered ferrite magnets, sintered rare earth magnets and magnets in a closed circuit assembly. Each can perform at different temperatures, with differing magnetic characteristics.

Attractive Material

Often incorrectly referred to as magnetic, attractive material will attract magnetic material. Fundamentally, all attractive material contains iron and has no magnetic polarity itself.

Our attractive material options are digifilm®, supaferro® flexible ferrous sheet and steel tape.

Anisotropic Magnet

Anisotropic magnets have their magnetic domains aligned in a single direction during the manufacturing process by the application of an electromagnetic field that fixes the domains in a direction parallel to the applied electromagnetic field. This process optimises the magnetic characteristics of the magnetic domains, resulting in a stronger performing magnet.

Isotropic Magnet

Isotropic magnets are formed by the same manufacturing process as Anisotropic magnets, except without electrical alignment. As a result the magnetic domains remain unaligned or random, and there is no preferred direction of magnetisation, allowing for magnetisation to be applied equally in any direction.

Curie Temperature

This is the temperature at which a magnet material suffers loss of magnetism completely. Each magnet material has a different curie temperature.

Closed Circuit

This describes the flux path, external to the permanent magnet, being confined within a highly permeable material containing the magnetic circuit, e.g. a pot magnet.

Holding Force or Pull Force

Holding force or pull force represents the weight that has to be applied to seperate the magnet from a polished 10mm thick steel plate at room temperature.

Please note, if the steel used is not smooth, less than 10mm thick or has a coating applied such as paint or a powder coating then published pull force figures cannot be guaranteed as the magnetic performance will be affected.

Pull Gap

Pull gaps are usually illustrated in graph form and represent the pull force of a magnet when it is not in intimate contact with a ferrous surface. The graphic will show how the pull force reduces as the operating gap increases. The type of magnet and the way it is magnetised influence this behavior dramatically.

Permeance

This is a reference as to how an attractive material performs with a magnet. If a magnet is strongly attracted to something then that something is said to have a high permeability. Iron or steel are two examples of that which is why they are chosen to form magnetic circuits as in closed circuits above.

Neodymium Iron Boron (NdFeB)

From the rare earth family of elements developed via powder metallurgy. Based on iron and mixed with boron, these magnet grades achieve higher magnetic characteristics than any other magnetic material at room temperature. They are magnetically aligned in the sintering process and are protected by nickel plating against oxygen and moisture.