Team Builds Magnet 2 million times stronger than the EarthThe Earth is big. It has a gigantic spinning core that produces magnetic field lines so powerful that we can feel them all the way up here on the surface. The field lines are even powerful enough to shuttle charged particles from the sun away from us and out into space.
But the Earth has nothing on a new magnet made by researchers from Los Alamos Laboratories. they have managed to break the 100 tesla barrier, meaning that the magnet is over 2 million times more powerful than the Earth’s field up here. Which, you know, is really, really powerful.
The 1,200-megajoule motor generator that powers the magnetic pulse.
Talking about the achievement, Chuck Mielke, the director of the Puled field Facility at Los Alamos, said: "This is our moon shot, we've worked toward this for a decade and a half.”
Breaking the 100 tesla barrier has long been a goal, as you can start doing some interesting research at that point. The 100.75 tesla pulse that the lab produced, for example, provided scientific fodder for experiments from Rutgers University, École Nationale Supérieure d'Ingénieurs de Caen, McMaster University, University of Puerto Rico, University of Minnesota, Cambridge University, University of British Columbia, and Oxford University.
Speaking about the scientific results, Mielke said:
“the new magnet has allowed our users and staff to pin down the upper critical field of a new form of superconductor, discover two new magnetically ordered states in a material that has eluded scientists for nearly 30 years, observe magneto-quantum oscillations in a high temperature superconductor to unprecedented resolution, determine a topological state of a new material, and discover a new form of magnetic ordering in an advanced magnetic material."
Previously, it had been possible to reach the 100 tesla mark. Other magnets have But any magnet that attempted the feat would quickly self destruct, meaning that generating the field would be the last thing any magnet ever did. This magnet was an attempt at sustainability that happened to succeed. Los Alamos’ magnet manages the feat with a sprawling setup of 7 coils and a gigantic 1,200 megajoule generator. The coils alone weigh 9 tons.
We don’t yet know all the advances that might come out of this thing. But being able to reliably experiment at higher magnetic field levels are sure to produce some interesting results. The possible superconductor research alone makes this magnet worth it.
After all, while superconductors have some of the most bizarre behavior we’ve ever seen (they have 0 electrical resistance and magnetic fields cannot penetrate them. They often move and shape themselves in odd ways, and if you ever get bored, you should watch a clip about the Meissner effect they could prove to be useful in untold ways.
If nothing else, this magnet is just plain cool.