Dampers

Magnetic Smart Materials are utilized in the fabrication of diverse applications such as brakes and high-performance shock absorbers for civil engineering (bridges and buildings), industrial and household appliances (washing machines and fitness equipment), medical appliances (prosthetic limbs) and automotive industry (cars and trucks). For instance the Audi Magnetic Ride are Magneto Rheological Dampers with an electronic control unit for the suspension that will automatically adjust its damping properties depending on the current road conditions and driving manner.

Heat transfer

Using Magnetic Smart Materials for cooling of micro-system based on thermomagnetic convection: a magnet acts as a pump (with no moving parts, no power or maintenance) and the Magnetic Smart Material acts as the coolant. Cool Magnetic Smart Material is drawn to the part that requires cooling, it warms up and becomes less magnetic and fresh cool Magnetic Smart Material replaces it. This cycle may continue indefinitely.

Haptic feedback

Haptic feedback allows people to experience virtual object contact as they would in the real world and improve their accuracy during virtual object grasping. It may also enable people to disinguish different virtual objects by providing its users with passive force feedback for instance between their fingers.

Sealings

Magnetic Smart Materials can also be used as a liquid seal in devices. For example, in computer hard-drives ferrofluid can be used to form a seal around the rotating shaft.

 

Medical use

Other applications include Magnetic Smart Materials also have medical applications and it is expected that they will increase in the future. Examples are carrying medications to exact locations within the body and the use as a contrasting agent for MRI scans.

Catalyst

Magnetic Smart Materials can also be used as a catalyst for depolymerisation of plastic waste to be able recycle it (cradle to cradle) while at the same time saving energy and reducing the impact on the environment. The depolymerisation process takes place at a relative low temperature and using a magnetic field the catalyst is recycled and reused. The Magnetic Smart Material works as a catalyst resulting in higher concentration of monomers compared to traditional recycling processes through higher selectivity and higher polymers conversion.

Separation

Magnetic fluids are also used for the separation of magnetic from non-magnetic materials and for the separation of materials by their density. For instance when recycling metals in waste or separating diamond from gangue material in the mining industry. Using a magnetic field creates a magnetic pressure distribution in the ferrofluid that causes the ferrofluid to act as if it has a variable density that changes with height. Magnetic materials are attracted to the regions of strongest magnetic field, whereas nonmagnetic materials are displaced to the regions of low magnetic field with matching effective density.

Art

An example of the use of Magnetic Smart Materials in art can be found here