Why do electromagnets get hot?
What's the reason the electromagnets heat up?
Unlike ordinary magnets, electromagnets heat
up. These man made devices do everything a magnet can do and much more. They
are particularly useful because it is possible to make them have any desired
field strength and become stronger or weaker or even turned off.
Basically, electromagnets are coils of wire wrapped around a metal core, which in turn are connected to a battery. Although they are easy to make, they can have a problem with overheating if given more voltage than their wires can withstand. Fortunately, with careful design, this problem can be avoided.
What to do when the electromagnets heat up?
As mentioned, it is possible to avoid heating
of electromagnets. To do this, you can multiply the diameter of the
electromagnets, i.e. the distance from one side of the coil to the other, by
3.14. Then, multiply this figure by the number of turns on the coil you are
This will give you the length of cable your
electromagnet will use. If you measured the diameter in inches, the length will
then be in inches. If the measurement was in centimeters, the length will be in
Then, dwell the wire gauge resistance chart
and select a random wire gauge. Look at how many ohms of resistance the wire
gauge has per foot, meter, or your chosen unit of measure. Multiply this by the
length of cable your electromagnet will require. The resulting figure will be
the number of ohms of resistance your wire will have in that meter.
Next, divide the voltage of the battery you
intend to use by the resistance of the cable you are considering. The result
will be the current that will flow in that cable when it is connected.
You can compare this figure to the maximum
current rating for that caliber wire on the current rating wire gauge chart. If
the current your electromagnet will draw is greater than the maximum for which
the meter is rated, do the calculations again, but with a smaller gauge wire.
The lower the gauge, the wider the cable and
the more current it can carry. Repeat this process until you find a meter that
safely transmits the current your device will produce without overheating.
You have to keep in mind that:
Do electromagnets heat up every time they are
Generally speaking, yes. Electromagnets are in
many of the everyday objects that we hadn't even noticed could have one inside.
Among their most frequent uses, and in which their presence could not be
replaced by any other element, are electric motors, which usually heats the
electromagnet very frequently.
There is a diversity of uses for electromagnets in the industrial sector, as well as in robotics. Electromagnets are also used to lift heavy weights of metals such as in scrapyards.
To clarify all your doubts about why electromagnets heat up, at IMA we help you choose the type of magnet that best suits your needs. If you have any doubt, ask us.