MIKKEL JUUL JENSEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MIKKEL JUUL JENSEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Magnetic field of a bar magnet, illustration. By convention, the poles of a magnet are labelled north and south, here red and white, and the field lines emerge from the magnet at the north pole and enter at the south pole. The magnetic polarity runs from south to north. Although the density of the lines shows the variation in the intensity of the magnetic field, the magnetic field itself is continuous. Magnetism is a property of ferromagnetic metals (such as iron, nickel and cobalt) caused by the alignment of the spins of the electrons in the metal.
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