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I have some permanent "refrigerator" magnets and noticed that, though they attract the refrigerator, they also attract each other (there is only one side available for the magnet, the other side has a plastic shell). This is odd because they "should" repel each other.

How is it, that the magnets can attract the refrigerator and also each other?

I have a couple ideas but none of them make complete sense. For example, the magnetic domain of the refrigerator (refrigerator is ferro-magnetic) is then directed towards the direction of the magnetic field of the permanent magnet hence the attraction. But what direction is the magnetic moment in the permanent magnet? Perhaps the answer lies in the direction of the magnetic moment of the permanent magnets.

Any insight is appreciated.

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Try pulling them apart along one axis of the sheet. They will slip and grip alternatingly, with the sub-strips of magnets that make up the larger sheet. These are laid out with alternating polarity, which may line up when the sheets are stacked on top of each other.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the response. Do you know where I could find more info on this subject? $\endgroup$ – mikanim Oct 5 '18 at 18:05
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    $\begingroup$ @ssphysics en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halbach_array $\endgroup$ – user205719 Oct 5 '18 at 18:09

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