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How to Demagnetize a Magnet
The first thing many kids do when they get home from school is open the refrigerator. Is your refrigerator door covered with cards, photos and papers? You probably already figured out that refrigerator magnets are attracted to the steel in the refrigerator door. Magnets are materials that attract iron (which is what steel is mostly made of), nickel and a couple other metals. A material is said to be magnetic if it acts like a magnet. The atoms within a magnet line up in groups with their north and south ends lined up with Earth’s magnetic pole. When many, many atoms are lined up in the same direction the material creates a magnetic field, which is the space around a magnet where the pull or push forces operate.
Now that we have discussed how your refrigerator magnets work, let’s investigate how to demagnetize a magnet. When we say that magnets can become demagnetized, we mean that they lose their ability to attract metals like iron.
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