# Properties of Magnets

There are three primary magnetic elements, which are all transition metals. These include:

• Iron
• Nickel
• Cobalt

Steel is an alloy of iron and carbon. As steel is mostly made of iron, it is magnetic.

Magnets have two magnetic poles:

1. north pole – north seeking pole

2. south pole – south seeking pole

Here we have a north pole and a south pole:

Keep in mind that the north pole is typically represented by ‘N’ and the south pole by ‘S’.

## Attraction and Repulsion

When you bring magnets close to each other, they can either attract or repel, resulting in two forces: attraction and repulsion.

### Opposite poles attract each other

Consider a north pole and a south pole. As opposite poles attract, they will move towards each other.

### Like poles repel each other

Consider two north poles. Since like poles repel, these magnets will push away from each other. The same occurs with two south poles; they also repel each other.

• You can determine if a piece of metal is a magnet if it repels another confirmed magnet
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