Author Topic: Measure a magnet's B field with a Rigol DS1054Z oscilloscope and a piece of wire  (Read 675 times)

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Offline RoGeorge

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I wanted to find out the magnetic field, \$B\$, for this permanent magnet.

The idea was that most of the magnetic field lines are concentrated between the two iron spacers that link the two magnets together.  If a probe is placed between the two spacers, the probe will feel most of the \$B\$.  If the probe is removed (ideally to an infinite distance) the magnetic field seen by the probe will be zero.

If our probe is a coil, some voltage will be generated while pulling it out from the \$B\$ magnetic field.

The coil has 17 turns made out of solid Cu wire from a former LAN cable.  The blue white wire on the exterior is unconnected, just for mechanical consolidation of the whole donut.  The coil is initially put in the middle of the two iron spacers, then the orange wire is slapped down over the edge of the table in order to quickly move the coil outside the iron spacers and thus to a zero \$B\$ field.

From Faraday's induction law, the induced voltage \$V\$ in an \$N\$ turns coil will be:

$$V = -N\frac{\vartriangle \Phi}{\vartriangle t}$$
where \$\Phi\$ is the magnetic flux

$$\Phi = BA$$
\$B\$ being the magnetic field and \$A\$ being the area.  Combining the two formulas,

$$V = -N\frac{d\Phi}{dt} = -NA\frac{dB}{dt}$$

If we integrate over the time required to pull the measuring coil out of the \$B\$ magnetic field, we get

$$\int_{t_0}^{t_{\infty}} V dt = -NA (B_{t_{\infty}} - B_{t_0})$$
\$B_{t_{\infty}}\$ is \$B\$ outside the two iron spacers, so zero
\$B_{t_0}\$ is the magnetic field \$B\$ between the two iron spacers, the value we try to find out

In conclusion,

$$B = \frac{1}{NA} \int V dt$$

If we look at the voltage waveform with an oscilloscope while extracting the coil probe out of our unknown \$B\$ field, then the \$\int V dt\$ term is nothing but the area of the voltage waveform seen on the oscilloscope.

According to the last formula for \$B\$, no mater the speed we pull the coil out from the field, and no matter the shape of the voltage waveform induced in the coil, the area seen on the oscilloscope should be about the same, because area is dictated by the initial magnetic field \$B\$, which is constant. 

Rigol DS1054Z can calculate and display for us the area of a waveform (the integral).  Let's check if the area indeed stays the same.  The next 3 screen captures show 3 different measurements.  In all 3 the area is almost the same, about 355 microvolt seconds.

Constant area it is!  ^-^

At a closer look at the magnets, there is a washer between each of the two iron spacers and the magnets:

Let's remove the washers (in the hope that thus we can slightly increase the magnetic field) and measure again:

Strangely, the magnetic field seems to be slightly smaller without the washers, any ideas why?   :-//

Now, let's plug the numerical values into the last formula and see how many Tesla we have between the two iron spacers:

B = 1/(17 turns * 3.14 * 0.01 m * 0.01 m) * 355E-06 Vs = 0.066470 Tesla = 66.5mT

Not bad, 66.5 mT for 2 magnets bought for less than $10 from the LIDL supermarket.  :-+

If it were to use them for NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) experiments, the Larmor precessional frequency of \$^1H\$ protons will be at about 2.83 MHz.

The magnet is pretty strong when used as intended, as a clamping device.  Once clamped to a ferrous material it is almost impossible to remove with only one hand.  It was sold as a "20Kg holding magnet" for keeping in place ferrous materials while welding or assembling them. 

On the inside, each of the two magnets looks like that:

« Last Edit: November 14, 2020, 03:01:47 pm by RoGeorge »
The following users thanked this post: Rerouter, SilverSolder, JPortici, snarkysparky, Mortymore, bd139

Offline snarkysparky

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Also independent of the spatial distribution of the field if I understand correctly.

Very interesting post.


Offline RoGeorge

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Indeed.  Also the spatial distribution of \$B\$ doesn't matter either.

It matter only the values of the initial and the final \$B\$.  In other words, a static magnetic field is a conservative field, so the path of a line integral doesn't matter.  Only the start and the destination points matters.

Same thing said in yet another way:  In a conservative field any closed path integral is zero, meaning that if we start from a point then wander around no matter what path, when we came back to the point we started, the integral will be zero.

Note that
- a static magnetic field is a conservative field, but
- a variable magnetic field is NOT conservative.

Jan 2020 edit: was discontinued in 2019.  Replaced former tynipic links in the OP with local attachments pics.

Nov 2020 edit:
Inline insert pictures plugin not working any more.  Replaced former plugin tags with inline local attachments links.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2020, 03:05:32 pm by RoGeorge »

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