Discovery may lead to battery that generates magnetic currents
The new type of battery gives a convenient source of magnetic currents, which were cumbersome to generate in the past, comments physicist Phuan Ong of PrincetonUniversity. “Future generations of physicists can then use it to design devices of their own,” he says.
Eiji Saitoh of KeioUniversity in Yokohama, Japan, and his collaborators found that heating one side of a magnetized nickel-iron rod changes the arrangement of the electrons in the material according to their spins. These spins are the quantum-physics analogs of the south-north magnetic axes in bar magnets.
In the heated rod, electrons with