Rare-earth magnets are strong permanent magnets made from alloys of rare earth elements. Developed in the 1970s and 80s, rare-earth magnets are the strongest type of permanent magnets made and have significant performance advantages over ferrite or alnico magnets...
, is a permanent magnet
A magnet is a material or object that produces a magnetic field. This magnetic field is invisible but is responsible for the most notable property of a magnet: a force that pulls on other ferromagnetic materials, such as iron, and attracts or repels other magnets.A permanent magnet is an object...
made from an alloy
An alloy is a mixture or metallic solid solution composed of two or more elements. Complete solid solution alloys give single solid phase microstructure, while partial solutions give two or more phases that may or may not be homogeneous in distribution, depending on thermal history...
Neodymium is a chemical element with the symbol Nd and atomic number 60. It is a soft silvery metal that tarnishes in air. Neodymium was discovered in 1885 by the Austrian chemist Carl Auer von Welsbach. It is present in significant quantities in the ore minerals monazite and bastnäsite...
Iron is a chemical element with the symbol Fe and atomic number 26. It is a metal in the first transition series. It is the most common element forming the planet Earth as a whole, forming much of Earth's outer and inner core. It is the fourth most common element in the Earth's crust...
, and boron
Boron is the chemical element with atomic number 5 and the chemical symbol B. Boron is a metalloid. Because boron is not produced by stellar nucleosynthesis, it is a low-abundance element in both the solar system and the Earth's crust. However, boron is concentrated on Earth by the...
to form the Nd2Fe14B tetragonal
Tetragonal crystal system
In crystallography, the tetragonal crystal system is one of the 7 lattice point groups. Tetragonal crystal lattices result from stretching a cubic lattice along one of its lattice vectors, so that the cube becomes a rectangular prism with a square base and height .There are two tetragonal Bravais...
crystalline structure. Developed in 1982 by General Motors
General Motors Company , commonly known as GM, formerly incorporated as General Motors Corporation, is an American multinational automotive corporation headquartered in Detroit, Michigan and the world's second-largest automaker in 2010...
and Sumitomo Special Metals
Sumitomo Metal Industries
is a company with seat in Osaka, Japan. )It is the third largest integrated steel manufacturer in Japan withthree integrated steelworks and several other manufacturing plants.It is one of the largest manufacturers of Seamless Pipes and Tubes,...
, neodymium magnets are the strongest type of permanent magnet made. They have replaced other types of magnet in the many applications in modern products that require strong permanent magnets, such as motors in cordless
The term cordless literally means without a cord and is generally used to refer to electrical or electronic devices that are powered by a battery or battery pack and can operate without a power cord or cable attached to a fixed electricity supply such as an outlet, generator, or other centralized...
tools, hard disk
A hard disk drive is a non-volatile, random access digital magnetic data storage device. It features rotating rigid platters on a motor-driven spindle within a protective enclosure. Data is magnetically read from and written to the platter by read/write heads that float on a film of air above the...
drives, and magnetic fasteners.
The tetragonal Nd2Fe14B crystal structure has exceptionally high uniaxial magnetocrystalline anisotropy
Magnetic anisotropy is the direction dependence of a material's magnetic properties. In the absence of an applied magnetic field, a magnetically isotropic material has no preferential direction for its magnetic moment while a magnetically anisotropic material will align its moment with one of the...
The tesla is the SI derived unit of magnetic field B . One tesla is equal to one weber per square meter, and it was defined in 1960 in honour of the inventor, physicist, and electrical engineer Nikola Tesla...