Samarium Cobalt

Samarium Cobalt Magnets

We safely say that we have a life on this planet. But what we do not often mention is that we have life only on this planet as far as we know. No other known place in the universe provides such a hospitable environment and all other necessary substance to sustain such varied forms of life in one place.

It is our one and only home. It is a definitive Pandora’s Box, concealing riches which have enabled mankind to reach such mammoth proportions of progress in everyday life. Till the 18-th century man lived in basically a simple way in comparison to today’s extravagance.

With the advent of the Industrial age, human population began to grow exponentially and hence man had to produce or manufacture goods on a very large scale and very fast. Hence man explored and started making use of Earth’s natural resources to meet his own demands.

The Pandora’s Box had been opened and it showered man with riches. Oil, coal, minerals, valuable stones, plants, water and metals: everything the Earth could provide was put into labor to serve man’s need. Such a magnificent gift is a rare earth magnet, especially one type of it called samarium cobalt magnet.

What  are Samarium Cobalt Magnets?

Samarium cobalt magnets are a type of rare earth magnets. It is not so rare, as the name suggests but is found abundantly.

They are made from an alloy of samarium and cobalt and are the second placed strongest magnets after neodymium magnets having higher temperature ratings. These magnets are very brittle, expensive and prone to cracking and chipping.

They are available in two variations or series : Series 1:5 (SmCo5) and Series 2:17(Sm2Co17).

They are resistant to demagnetization, have good temperature stability but are subject to price variations in applications as cobalt pricing is highly market dependent. They were first developed in the 1970s.

Uses of Samarium-Cobalt Magnets

Due to their relatively less strong magnetism than neodymium magnets, samarium-cobalt magnets have found application in more sensitive fields.

The guitar producing legend, Fender, has been using the latest Samarium Cobalt Noiseless series of guitar picks in the American Deluxe Series of guitars from the famous designer Bill Lawrence. Beside in the highly competitive slot-car racing, high end electronic motors use this kind of magnets.

Other uses are in turbo-machinery and traveling-wave tube. One big advantage of samarium cobalt magnets is that they can be used in both very low cryogenic temperatures as well as very high temperatures.

But one must exercise caution while using such magnets as the strong magnetic fields may cause permanent damage to body parts.