Is Copper Attractive?

We all know that when two magnetic fields meet near together, they either repel or attract one other, resulting in the formation of a magnet. Copper must be superconductor, diamagnetic, paramagnetic, or ferromagnetic to qualify as a metal. Copper is one of the few metals that is diamagnetic in nature, despite the fact that it is meant to be paramagnetic.

Is Copper magnetic, then? Because it is diamagnetic in nature, it is weakly magnetic in the presence of a significant external magnetic field. Copper, on the other hand, is a non-magnetic metal. Copper repels an external magnetic field because it is a diamagnet.

The presence of unpaired electrons in the outermost shell of any metal determines its magnetic characteristics.

The more, the better, because they assist the atom in responding to a neighbouring magnetic field, either by attracted to it or repelling it.

Copper’s electronic configuration (Cu)

Copper, as shown in the diagram, has one electron missing in the s orbital, making it a paramagnet, as books claim.

However, chemistry is full of anomalies, and copper is one of them. One electron from the 4s shell is moved to the 3d shell to improve stability.

It results in symmetrical charge distribution throughout the 3d shell, and the process is exothermic, meaning it releases energy to attain a far more stable and low-energy state.

Why is copper diamagnetic in nature rather than paramagnetic?

We know that for a metal to be a diamagnet, it must have paired electrons, and for a metal to be a paramagnet, it must have an unpaired electron.

It is due to the stability that copper has gained as a result of the completion of its d shell.

It has greatly strengthened the stability of copper to the point where the lack of even one electron has no effect. It’s why copper is diamagnetic rather than paramagnetic in nature.

Why does copper have a magnetic property in nature?

In the presence of a high to very strong external magnetic field, all elements of the periodic table have magnetic characteristics.

Copper, like all diamagnetic metals, repels magnets in an external magnetic field.

Copper electrons begin spinning in their orbits in the presence of an external magnetic field.

This electron spinning determines whether an element attracts or repels a magnet.

What causes copper to reject a magnet?

Lenz’s law governs the interaction of a magnet and copper.

This law asserts that the direction of an electric current is determined by a constantly changing magnetic field induced in a conductor, which is based on the magnetic field created by the induced current, which opposes the initial magnetic field.

It is, as you may be aware, an energy conservation law.

The magnetic field and the electric current are inextricably linked. Electrical eddy currents are generated when a magnet is brought close enough to copper and moved.

If you let this current fall freely within the copper, it will repel the magnet (a centrally hollow copper ring). This repulsion pushes against the magnet, slowing down the free fall speed.

This interaction with magnets is utilised to create electricity in power plants.

How long does copper’s magnetic properties last?

An external magnetic field repels copper quite weakly. When the external magnetic field is eliminated, the magnetism normally fades away.

If the external magnetic field is extremely strong, the magnetism lasts for several days after it is removed.

The researchers are considering whether this behaviour could lead to the development of hybrid metal-organic magnets for medical imaging.

Is it possible for copper to attach to a magnet?

You should be able to answer this question on your own by now. No, copper will never stick to a magnet under normal circumstances. Furthermore, it repels the magnet in the presence of an external magnetic field.

Calculating copper’s magnetic susceptibility:

Copper has an extremely low magnetic susceptibility, which is normally measured between 300 and 1.45 degrees Kelvin.

The aforementioned formula can be used to calculate the actual figures.

Furthermore, copper’s nuclear susceptibility occurs at one-fifth of the temperatures mentioned.

This is owing to the presence of paramagnetic (unpaired electron) impurity concentration, which means that the susceptibility behaviour of copper is generally temperature independent.

Copper has a relative magnetic permeability of less than 1, and its permeability is lower than that of the vacuum, which is a sound diamagnetic feature.

The orbital velocity of electrons near nuclei is altered by the external magnetic field, which modifies the overall magnetic dipole moment in the opposite direction of the applied external magnetic field.

Magnetic permeability numbers provide a much sharper picture than magnetic susceptibility.

For diamagnets like copper, the magnetic permeability decreases as the applied external magnetic field increases.

Is it true that copper alloys are magnetic?

The element that was utilised to create an alloy with copper brings with it its own set of characteristics. So, if you’re wondering if all copper-alloys are magnetic, the answer is yes.

It is unable to respond in any way. We need to investigate this using a copper-beryllium alloy as an example.

It is also diamagnetic and has a magnetic behaviour comparable to that of metallic copper.

In general, all copper alloys with high strength are mildly paramagnetic. We may be talking about the majority of copper alloys because they are all high-strength.

Copper’s Characteristics

Copper is thought to be the best electrical conductor. It’s utilised to make electrical cables that are used all over the world.

It has a density of 8.9 at a temperature of 20°C.

It’s also naturally corrosion-resistant.

It is easily malleable, meaning it can be bent into various shapes.

Its melting point is around 1083 °C.

a few related issues

Is it possible to construct an electromagnet out of copper?

Copper has a low electrical resistance, allowing electric current to flow freely through it. Furthermore, copper may be easily moulded into a wire to form a coil. As a result, copper is an excellent material for making electromagnets.

Is it possible to utilise copper to resist or protect magnetic fields?

The use of a conductive element as a barricader to reduce the intensity of an electromagnetic field is known as electromagnetic shielding or blocking. Copper can be used as a barricade for other electromagnetic waves since it can easily shield radio frequency (RF) radiation.

Is it possible to coil copper wire around a magnet?

Yes, the overall magnetic field will be multiplied many times. Faraday’s law of induction is the principle it follows.

It is a fundamental law of electromagnetism that aids in predicting how a magnetic field will react to an induced electric field in order to produce electromotive force. Electromagnetic induction is another name for this phenomenon.

What is eddy current, and how does it work?

According to Faraday’s law of induction, an eddy current is a continuous loop of electrical current induced by altering the magnetic field in a conductor.

Is copper a superconductor or a superconductor?

Yes, since copper allows electrons to freely flow within itself while carrying electrical charge. Regardless of time, the electrical current can continue to flow within the metal without degrading or dissipating.


Copper is not ferromagnetic in nature, hence it is not magnetic in typical settings like iron. Copper, on the other hand, weakly repels a magnet in the presence of an external magnetic field.

Bypassing a magnet through a centrally hollow copper ring is the easiest method to comprehend this.

A free-falling magnet’s speed minimises the time it spends in contact with copper. From a distance, it appears like the magnet is floating in the air.

Read more: Is It True That Oil Evaporates?

Misha Khatri
Misha Khatri is an emeritus professor in the University of Notre Dame's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He graduated from Northern Illinois University with a BSc in Chemistry and Mathematics and a PhD in Physical Analytical Chemistry from the University of Utah.


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