MadSci Network: Physics

Re: My homework assignment is to interview a scientist who works with magnets.

Date: Tue Mar 30 08:24:27 2010
Posted By: Dr. Fred Jeffers, Staff, Magnetic Recording Research, Iomega corp.
Area of science: Physics
ID: 1269832581.Ph

Hi Conner,
     Glad to help.  Here is my resume.  If you email me your mailing 
address I will send you a free copy of my DVD full of really neat 
magnetic experiments you won't find anywhere else including several about 
NdFeB magnetic spheres.
     By the way, a magnetic sphere is an ideal dipole right up to the 
surface of the sphere.  
     Try spinning such a magnet on a level surface like the floor.  When 
you spin it one way it moves irregularly to the east and when you spin it 
the other way it moves to the west!  It never moves north or south.  The 
explnation lies in the fact that the earths field is mostly down at about 
60 degrees and to the north.    
Fred Jeffers PhD

About Fred Jeffers     
     Dr. Jeffers received his BS degree from Michigan State University in 
1960, his MS degree in 1964, and his PhD degree (in physics) in 1967, 
both from New Mexico State University. He began working in product R&D at 
the Bell and Howell Research Lab in Pasadena CA in 1967, and was there 
for 7 years. He then moved to Spin Physics/Kodak (later a division of the 
Kodak Research Labs) in San Diego CA, where he worked mainly in magnetics 
and magnetic recording research for 24 years. He retired from Kodak when 
the lab closed and worked with Iomega Corp. for 5 years until that lab 
closed. He is now working part time for Cummins Allison Corp. in Carlsbad 
CA and consulting.
     He has authored or co-authored three dozen highly cited papers, 
mostly in the magnetic recording field. Among these are the first papers 
published on the very important Metal-in-Gap (MIG) ferrite heads, and 
Soft Adjacent Layer (SAL) biased magneto resistive read heads. MIG heads 
were used in all Iomega floppy disk drives and are still used in all 
video tape recorders.  SAL-MR heads were used in all computer-hard-disk 
drives for many years. They are still used in all linear data tape 
recorders. These heads were key enabling factors in the development and 
sale of many billions of recording products.
     He has been awarded 68 US patents with several more pending. He is 
an IEEE Life Fellow and was an IEEE Distinguished Lecturer in 1999-2000. 
He has written a popular book on “Magnetic Magic” titled Mondo Magnets 
and made a DVD of the same name.  

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