Join PopSci+ to read science’s greatest stories. It’s just $1 per month »
You guessed it: Please don't try this at home Neodymium Earth Magnets
By Mary Beth Griggs | Published Jan 27, 2015 2:59 AM EST
A viral marketing campaign is literally making sparks fly in their latest video. Blender company Blendtec is known for their ‘Will it Blend?’ series of videos, in which founder Tom Dickson blends everything from iPhones to Elf on a Shelf.
For his latest video, Dickson threw some neodymium Buckyballs into the blender. The toy magnets–not to be confused with the buckminsterfullerene (aka buckyball) form of carbon–are super-strong, tiny magnetic balls that you can pull, stretch, or stack into any number of fun shapes.
Last year the Consumer Product Safety Commission banned the magnets for being too dangerous. Turns out the shiny, tiny balls are adored by younger children, who tend to put things into their mouths. Unfortunately, if swallowed, the magnets can attract to each other in the digestive system, causing internal organs to either tear or tangle.
Well, if they’re too dangerous to remain in circulation, why not throw them in a blender, instead? Check out the results below, but as the video says (and we reiterate): Don’t try this at home.
Update 1/27: We’ve gotten some great questions from readers wanting to know what causes the sparks in the video. Neodymium magnets are rare earth magnets that can create sparks when they impact each other. In addition, the dust of neodymium magnets is incredibly flammable. We’ll repeat; don’t try this at home. Popular Science is not responsible for you blowing up a blender/your kitchen.
Like science, tech, and DIY projects?
Sign up to receive Popular Science's emails and get the highlights.
Articles may contain affiliate links which enable us to share in the revenue of any purchases made.
Most Powerful Magnet You Can Buy Registration on or use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service.