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Clean Energy Magnets

Faculty Advisor: Prof. Peter Müllner

To move from a fossil-fuel-powered economy to a clean-energy society, strong permanent magnets are needed for electric motors and generators. Current high-power magnets contain rare-earth elements, which are sourced solely from China. The geopolitics associated with the rare-metal trade presents a national risk for the United States. To mitigate this risk, the Magnetic Materials Lab explores the structure, processing, and properties of rare-earth-free permanent magnet alloys. We work with alloys, some of which were first found in meteorites, in which non-ferromagnetic base elements are made ferromagnetic by the addition of specific alloying elements.

Role of Participant(s):

The participant(s) will develop economical magnets from elements available in the US and characterize their microstructures, defect structures, and magnetic properties using various techniques.

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