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When performing the iron filings and bar magnet experiment, why are there gaps between the lines formed by the filings. Also, do the gaps cover up when more filings are added?

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Let's take the example of two "threads" of iron filings, next to each other, in this scenario.

Through contact with the two ends of the magnet, all those filings in one thread are magnetized by induction and as such themselves become one long skinny magnet with its N end touching the S end of the main magnet and its S end touching the N end of the main magnet. The adjacent string of similarly-magnetized filings has its ends touching the main magnet in the same manner, and so you then have two magnets (the two threads) right next to each other with both their S ends next to each other and their N ends next to each other.

Because of this they repel each other, and because the threads can flex and shift about, they bend and bow outwards- and similarly for all the other threads of iron chips.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks a ton :) $\endgroup$ Oct 17, 2021 at 10:33

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