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Magnets attract each other with a force (magnetic force), because they possess magnetic energy.

My question is, is there any way, by which we can convert that magnetic energy into electrical energy?

I know about Faraday's experiment. But I think that the electricity produced in it, is due to mechanical energy - used to produce the relative motion of the coil and the magnet.

But, I want to know if electricity can be produced purely by using magnetic energy, i.e, we convert magnetic energy into electrical energy, so that in that process, the magnet loses its energy?

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  • $\begingroup$ You can heat the magnet to its Curie point. Not a problem, but destroying a good magnet for a small amount of energy is such a waste. $\endgroup$ – CuriousOne Apr 21 '16 at 15:38
  • $\begingroup$ @CuriousOne If we are heating the magnet, then aren't we supplying energy instead of extracting it? $\endgroup$ – dryairship Apr 22 '16 at 11:52
  • $\begingroup$ Not for the purposes of running a thermodynamic engine. Where is the second heat bath? How does your magnet get its magnetization back after you cool it down? If you want to make this into something like a cyclical engine, then you would also need an external 2T magnetic field, in which case one could build a reasonable cycle. $\endgroup$ – CuriousOne Apr 22 '16 at 18:24
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Perpetual motion machines utilizing permanent magnets exist, but they are perpetual only until the magnets become demagnetized. See the answers here. For the rotating ones, if one used a brush to generated triboelectricity, yes, magnetic energy will be turned into electric.

An intermediate kinetic stage is necessary, because it is changing magnetic fields that produce electric fields and vice verso, and changes can only happen using motion.

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A magnet has magnetic energy because of it position/orientation with respect to another magnet or an external magnetic field. Magnetic energy isn't an intrinsic property of the magnet itself but rather of the system of which the magnet is a part. Take a simple example of two permanent bar magnets separated by some small distance with their north poles near each other. There would exist a force of repulsion between the magnets and, if allowed to move apart, the system could do some work. We could imagine connecting them to some sort of generator and using that work to produce electrical energy.

You are right in that usually magnets are used to in a generator to convert mechanical energy to electrical energy.

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  • $\begingroup$ So you mean to say, that to generate electricity from magnets, I need to create a system of at least two magnets? $\endgroup$ – dryairship Apr 23 '16 at 4:32
  • $\begingroup$ You can use a single magnet to generate electricity, with a coil for a example, but you need some mechanical energy to make that happen. What I'm saying is that its not really meaningful to talk about the magnetic energy of a magnet in isolation. $\endgroup$ – M. Enns Apr 23 '16 at 18:37
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the concept of generating electricity from magnetism is that a moving magnetic field produces an magnetic motive force gives rise to the electro motive force to the electrons of the wire which is being induced and hence results in production of electric current. But really don't you think this is a childish concept the whole process is about absorption and emission.if you need a detailed explanation reply to my answer.

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