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Exploring Materials: Ferrofluid

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    NISE Network

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Exploring Materials: Ferrofluid

In this activity, learners discover that a material can act differently when it's nanometer-sized. Learners investigate the properties of ferrofluid and magnetic black sand and learn that the surprising difference in the behavior of these two materials is due to size. Use this activity to talk about the differences in nanoscale materials.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
Over $20 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 4 - adult

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan

English, Spanish


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Nanotechnology
  • Mathematics
    • Measurement
      • Units of Measurement
      • Size and Scale
  • Physical Sciences
    • Electricity and Magnetism
      • Electromagnetic Fields
    • States of Matter
      • Solids
      • Liquids


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


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