Physics Help Forum Simple question help needed please

 Electricity and Magnetism Electricity and Magnetism Physics Help Forum

 Feb 28th 2017, 12:33 PM #1 Junior Member   Join Date: Feb 2017 Posts: 2 Simple question help needed please Firstly can I appologies for asking such a simple question, I last 'studied' physics thirty years ago at school and that was at a pre GCSE level and I was by no means a scholar. Would one get a stronger magnetic 'pull' from a magnet if the ferrous metal it was attracted to was larger in size? In other words, I know the stronger the magnet the stronger the 'pull', but would a great mass of ferrous metal increase the pull as well? Apologies for the daft question, thank you in advance.
 Feb 28th 2017, 03:12 PM #2 Physics Team     Join Date: Jun 2010 Location: Naperville, IL USA Posts: 2,179 Not a daft question at all. If considering a magnet being attracted to a metal sheet, there is a correlation between the size of the metal sheet and the resulting magnetic force. Make the sheet metal area larger and the pull gets stronger, up to a point - once the sheet metal gets to be about 2 or 3 times the surface area of the magnet the effect diminishes, because the strength of the magnetic field diminishes with distance. So if you have a magnet with surface area of, say, 1 square inch, it will be attracted to a piece of metal with areas around 2 or 3 square inches just about as strongly as to a piece of metal with area 20 square inches.
 Feb 28th 2017, 10:45 PM #3 Junior Member   Join Date: Feb 2017 Posts: 2 That's REALLY helpful, thank you so much.

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