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Creating Rare Earth-Free Permanent Magnets
ChE/MIE Professor Laura Lewis was awarded a patent for developing a method to create "Rare earth-free permanent magnetic material".
Abstract Source: USPTO
The invention provides rare earth-free permanent magnetic materials and methods of making them. The materials can be used to produce magnetic structures for use in a wide variety of commercial applications, such as motors, generators, and other electromechanical and electronic devices. Magnets fabricated using the materials can be substituted for magnets requiring rare earth elements that are costly and in limited supply. The invention provides two different types of magnetic materials. The first type is based on an iron-nickel alloy that is doped with one or more doping elements to promote the formation of L1.sub.0 crystal structure. The second type is a nanocomposite particle containing magnetically hard and soft phases that interact to form an exchange spring magnetic material. The hard phase contains Fe or FeCo, and the soft phase contains AlMnC.