FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
How are neodymium magnets produced?
It is very time-consuming to produce super magnets made of neodymium iron bor (NdFeb). The production takes place in China where the necessary raw materials are extracted as well.
The alloy NdFeB was discovered in 1984. Thanks to research and new add-ons as well as production methods neodymium magnets have since become even stronger.
Table of Contents
1. Producing the alloyThe three elements iron, neodymium and boron as well as other components are pulverised and fused together in a vacuum. The resulting alloy has the chemical formula NdFeB.
2. Manufacturing the raw magnets
The neodymium iron boron powder is being lightly magnetised and then pressed into a basic form (mostly cylinder or cuboid-shaped). Thereafter, the mixture is sintered (=heated up in a vacuum) and slowly cooled down. The alloy has now a very special crystal structure that benefits a magnetisation later on.
3. Adding a coating
Thereafter, the raw magnets are galvanically coated, normally with a layer of nickel. Without this coating, magnets would quickly oxidise and disintegrate into grey dust. Most neodymium magnets have a nickel copper nickel coating. Other coatings are also possible (see Which magnet coatings are there?).
4. Magnetising the magnets
Now the finished magnets are placed in a magnet coil, through which a strong electrical current is shot for one millisecond. This coil produces a strong magnetic field and the super magnets are being magnetised through this magnetic field, meaning the molecules and crystals align along the coil's magnetic field. When the coil is turned off again, the super magnets remain very magnetic due to their special crystal structure (see also remanence).
5. Inspection, packaging and shipping
Packaged in large cardboard boxes and stacked on palettes, the magnets are being prepared for the transport to Europe.
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