Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

25 Tesla, world-record 'split magnet' makes its debut

Date:
July 13, 2011
Source:
Florida State University
Summary:
A custom-built, $2.5 million "split magnet" system with the potential to revolutionize scientific research in a variety of fields has made its debut at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory at Florida State University.

Interior parts for the split coil magnet were tested and retested to ensure the magnet’s structural integrity.
Credit: Florida State University

A custom-built, $2.5 million "split magnet" system with the potential to revolutionize scientific research in a variety of fields has made its debut at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory at Florida State University.

Related Articles


The world-record magnet is operating at 25 tesla, easily besting the 17.5 tesla French record set in 1991 for this type of magnet. ("Tesla," named for early 20th-century inventor and engineer Nikola Tesla, is a measurement of the strength of a magnetic field.) In addition to being 43 percent more powerful than the previous world best, the new magnet also has 1,500 times as much space at its center, allowing room for more flexible, varied experiments.

To offer some perspective on the strength of the new magnet, consider this: Twenty-five tesla is equal to a whopping 500,000 times Earth's magnetic field. Imagine that much power focused on a very small space and you have some idea what the split magnet is capable of -- and why both engineers and scientists at the magnet lab are so excited.

"The Mag Lab has developed numerous world-record magnets; however, the split magnet makes the largest single step forward in technology over the past 20 years," said Mark Bird, director of the laboratory's Magnet Science and Technology division.

For decades, scientists have used high magnetic fields to probe the unusual properties of materials under extreme conditions of heat and pressure. There are unique benefits that arise at especially high magnetic fields -- certain atoms or molecules become more easily observable, for example, or exhibit properties that are difficult to observe under less extreme conditions. The powerful new split magnet system holds promise for even more breakthroughs at the very edge of human knowledge.

The new magnet was funded by the National Science Foundation and represents years of intense collaboration between the lab's engineering and research teams, headed by scholar/scientist Jack Toth of the Magnet Science and Technology staff.

The magnet's design required Toth's team to rethink the structural limits of resistive magnets -- that is, those in which the magnetic field is produced by the flow of electric current. The project required that the engineers invent, patent and find sometimes-elusive builders for the technology that could carry their idea through. The result of their work, the new split magnet, features four large elliptical ports that provide scientists with direct, horizontal access to the magnet's central experimental space, or bore, while still maintaining a high magnetic field.

High-powered research magnets are created by packing together dense, high-performance copper alloys and running an electrical current through them. All of the magnet's forces are focused on the center of the magnet coil -- right where Toth and his team engineered the four ports. Building a magnet system with ports strong enough to withstand such strong magnetic fields and such a heavy power load was once considered impossible.

To accomplish the impossible, Toth's team cut large holes in the mid-plane of the magnet to provide user access to the bore but maintain a high magnetic field. All of this had to be done while supporting 500 tons of pressure pulling the two halves of the magnet together and, at the same time, allowing 160,000 amps of electrical current and 3,500 gallons of water per minute to flow through the mid-plane. (The water is needed to keep the magnet from overheating.)

While the technological breakthroughs enabling the magnet's construction are important, the multidisciplinary research possibilities are even more exciting. Optics researchers in chemistry, physics and biology are poised to conduct research using the split magnet, while others are optimistic about the potential for breakthroughs in nanoscience and semiconductor research.

The magnet's first user, a scientist from Kent State University, has already begun conducting experiments.

"Among other research possibilities," said Eric Palm, director of the magnet lab's Direct Current User Program, "the split magnet will allow optics researchers unprecedented access to their samples, improve the quality of their data, and enable new types of experiments."

The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (http://www.magnet.fsu.edu/) develops and operates state-of-the-art, high-magnetic-field facilities that faculty and visiting scientists and engineers use for research. The laboratory is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the state of Florida.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Florida State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Florida State University. "25 Tesla, world-record 'split magnet' makes its debut." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 July 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110713131646.htm>.
Florida State University. (2011, July 13). 25 Tesla, world-record 'split magnet' makes its debut. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110713131646.htm
Florida State University. "25 Tesla, world-record 'split magnet' makes its debut." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110713131646.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Building Google Into Cars

Building Google Into Cars

Reuters - Business Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Google's next Android version could become the standard that'll power your vehicle's entertainment and navigation features, Reuters has learned. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP (Dec. 19, 2014) What to buy an experienced photographer or video shooter? There is some strong gear on the market from Nikon and GoPro. The AP's Ron Harris takes a closer look. (Dec. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins