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Introduction to Magnetism: The Challenges of Rare Earth Magnets

Explore the fundamental concepts of magnetism to better understand the rare earth magnet value chain.

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Introduction to Magnetism: The Challenges of Rare Earth Magnets

  • 6 weeks

  • 2 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

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  • Duration

    6 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours
  • 100% online

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Develop job-ready skills for the rare earth magnets value chain sector

Rare earth magnets are strong permanent magnets with effective energy-producing capabilities. This makes them a vital component of climate-positive products such as electric vehicles and wind turbines.

On this six-week course, you’ll delve into the rare earth magnet value chain to help you prepare for jobs in the industries involved. You’ll also gain the necessary skills to adapt to a changing industrial environment – one that is more resilient and green.

With this knowledge, you’ll be able to search and implement innovative solutions in the rare earth permanent magnet industry sector.

Delve into the periodic table and rare earth elements

You’ll start by exploring the origin of magnetism and its basic concepts including key terminology, applications, and value.

Next, you’ll gain a solid introduction to the periodic table to understand its origins and structure. With this knowledge, you’ll have a deeper understanding of rare earth elements.

Explore the types of magnetic materials

On week three of the course, you’ll explore different types of magnetic materials to understand their behaviour.

You’ll also learn the elements that permanent magnets consist of and the techniques used to measure magnetic properties of materials to help you gain practical skills.

Gain an understanding of the hysteresis loop and the rare earth magnet value chain

To help you develop an advanced understanding of magnets, you’ll unpack concepts such as the hysteresis loop as well as 3d metal vs 4f metal for magnets.

Finally, you’ll delve further into the rare earth magnet value chain. This exploration will ensure you finish the course with an understanding of its importance for the green energy transition.

Syllabus

  • Week 1

    Origin of magnetism

    • Getting to know each other

      During this first activity, we would like to introduce ourselves, the platform and, of course, to get to know you. We look forward to hearing who you are and why you are here.

    • Some definitions

      We are going to begin our exploration of magnets with some important definitions, which you will need to complete the course. This activity will therefore focus on the essentials of magnetism to get your started.

    • Where does magnetism come from?

      In this activity, we will present the basics you need to know to understand why a material is magnetic or not.

    • Unit systems

      This activity is going to summarize the magnitudes and units most frequently used.

    • Week 1 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before progressing to Week 2.

  • Week 2

    The Periodic Table

    • Introduction and history

      In this activity, we will briefly review the history of the discovery of the Periodic Table and explore the Periodic Law. We take a tour over the Periodic Table and locate the main elements exhibiting magnetism.

    • Atomic number and electronic structure

      In this activity, you are going to learn about the electronic structure of atoms and its variation along the Periodic Table.

    • Origins of magnetism of Rare Earths elements

      In this activity, we consider the position of Rare Earth elements in the Periodic Table and connect it to their properties via their electronic configuration.

    • Week 2 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before progressing to Week 3.

  • Week 3

    Types of magnetic materials

    • Behaviour of materials in magnetic fields

      This activity will help yourself to find out if you know about magnetic materials and how to magnetise a material.

    • Types of magnetic materials

      In this activity, we will discuss the main types of magnetism: diamagnetism (DM), paramagnetism (PM) and ferromagnetism (FM).

    • In-house experimental techniques

      In this activity, we consider the position of Rare Earth elements in the Periodic Table and connect it to their properties via their electronic configuration.

    • Experimental techniques in large facilities

      Not only can we perform measurements in our laboratories in order to obtain magnetic properties. Large facilities contain devices which can be used for a more detailed characterization of our materials.

    • Week 3 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before progressing to Week 4.

  • Week 4

    Hysteresis loop of a ferromagnet

    • Ferromagnetic order and energy minimization

      In this activity, we consider the free energy of a ferromagnet in a magnetic field. Spontaneous magnetization is then derived as a function of applied magnetic field, to introduce and explain the origin of the hysteresis loop.

    • Hysteresis loop and related properties

      In this activity, we consider M-H and B-H hysteresis loops for soft and hard magnetic materials and review the properties that can be determined from the hysteresis loop.

    • Magnetic anisotropy

      In this activity, we consider the magnetization curve and its characteristics (magnetic permeability) for soft and hard magnets, relating different parts of the curve to the domain structure.

    • Week 4 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before progressing to Week 5.

  • Week 5

    Crystal structure of magnets

    • Atomic arrangements in solids

      In this activity, we look at how atoms are arranged in solids, introduce the main types of crystalline structures and consider the concepts of crystal symmetry and anisotropy.

    • Magneto-crystalline and shape anisotropy

      In this activity, we further discuss the concepts of magnetocrystalline and shape anisotropy, and their influence on properties of magnetic materials.

    • Applications of magnets

      In this activity, we are going to discuss the application of magnets of different shape, size, composition and crystal structure. For different applications one needs specific combinations of materials’ properties.

    • Week 5 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before progressing to Week 5.

  • Week 6

    Rare Earth magnet value chain

    • 3d and 4f magnets

      In this activity, we explore the advantages and drawbacks of using 3d and 4f magnets for industrial applications.

    • Rare Earth value chain

      In this activity, we consider the critical links in the rare Earth value chain and its importance for the green energy transition.

    • Week 6 summary

      This activity consolidates this week's learning as you reflect on the topics discussed and test your understanding before completing the course.

    • Course summary

      This activity summarizes the content of the course. Thank you for your interest and participation, wish you good luck in the future. We hope you get great benefit from your new knowledge about magnetism.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

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Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain the terminology and units related to magnetism
  • Explain the logic of the elements’ arrangements in the Periodic Table
  • Describe the different types of magnetic materials and their behaviour in magnetic field
  • Describe the interconnection between the crystal structure of materials and their magnetism
  • Describe what elements permanent magnets consist of
  • Describe the techniques that used to measure magnetic properties of materials

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in rare earth magnets, with no prior experience needed. You may already work in the rare earth magnet value chain or you are looking to enter this industry.

The knowledge you’ll learn will help you gain an understanding of the critical links of rare earth magnets value chain.

Who will you learn with?

I am an associate professor at the Department of Physics of the University of Oviedo, Spain, where I have been working since 2008 teaching and doing research, and everything else in between

I am a docent in Materials Chemistry. My field of competence is Materials Science. I did my PhD studies, dedicated to synthesis and characterization magnetic materials, at Uppsala University, Sweden

I am an Assistant Professor at the Physics Department of the University of Oviedo. My research is focused on developing new materials for energy applications, such as permanent magnets.

I am a Professor in Materials Technology at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. I teach courses on Modeling Materials Properties.

Who developed the course?

EIT RawMaterials

Initiated and funded by the EIT (European Institute of Innovation and Technology), a body of the European Union, EIT RawMaterials is the largest European raw materials partnership.

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Subscribe & save

$244.99 for one whole year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$134/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access

Free

Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 7 Apr 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 4 March 2024 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 4 March 2024 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

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