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There are many videos on youtube in which permanent magnets are used to make a motor. Although it might be possible in an ideal environment (e.g. no friction). As these devices are rotating continously means that they are producing energy to overcome friction and other energy losses.

Is it really possible to produce energy only using permanent magnets (without using other energy source other than initial force as shown in videos)

Some videos:

  1. Free Energy Magnet Motor (Engine)
  2. Xpenzif free energy screw magnet motor
  3. Steorn concept Permanent Magnet Moter Test
  4. Free energy 1 magnet disk
  5. Removed video
  6. Screw Magnet Motor
  7. perpetual motion machine selfrunning

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11  
Constant motion in an ideal environment is not energy generation. –  Pieter B Dec 28 '12 at 8:43
    
If I understand the concept correctly, there are two ways in which that process can be implemented, but, according to Pieter B, "constant motion in an ideal environment is not energy generation." –  Carlo_R. Dec 28 '12 at 10:38
4  
It is totally possible as long as you don't mind being arrested for breaking the second law of thermodynamics. :-) –  matt_black Dec 28 '12 at 12:35
    
@matt_black - is that really a felony, or will it only get you a ticket? After all, you CAN break the law as long as you do so in an open system. –  user3344 Dec 28 '12 at 15:35
4  
@woodchips If the question were about an open system, he would be asking whether electrical generators existed. –  matt_black Dec 28 '12 at 16:48

3 Answers 3

Wikipedia explains:

There is a scientific consensus that perpetual motion in an isolated system violates either the first law of thermodynamics, the second law of thermodynamics, or both.

There is a long history of different types of failed perpetual motion machines - enough for books to be written.

Kevin Kilty has written a more readable discussion on the types of perpetual motion machine, and provides a categorisation of the types of false claims that they make.

A very quick review of the list of videos, and we are able to categorise them.

  1. Free Energy Magnet Motor (Engine): Category 5 = Fraud

    The claim is that the electromagnets in a simple electric motor were replaced by permanent magnets, requiring no external power.

    It only takes primary-school science to understand this is a fake. Electric motors require the polarity of the magnetism to change as the axle turns. A permanent magnet would simple freeze the axle in place.

    I speculate a hidden battery, although I also considered an electromagnet hidden behind the carpet.

  2. Xpenzif free energy screw magnet motor: Category 6 - Perpetually Out Of Balance

    This design will not work. The magnets will not pull the next screw-head forward, as it would be dragged back by the other magnet closest to a screw-head.

    The video shown would be easily faked, as the base of the axle was not shown.

  3. Steorn concept Permanent Magnet Moter Test: Category 8 - Machines without losses or friction

    Only a prototype, which was not an isolated system, was shown. The device is manually powered.

    This design will not work. What is shown is a prototype where the builder is underestimating how much energy he is putting into the system. The system will not generate enough energy (due to friction and conversion loss) to continually power itself when he eventually does close the cycle.

  4. Free energy 1 magnet disk

    There is insufficient detail shown to understand what the claim is here.

  5. Removed video

  6. Screw Magnet Motor - Already covered under #2 above.

  7. perpetual motion machine selfrunning: Category 4: Long running machine?

    There isn't enough detail here to be sure, but it looks like merely a long running machine, that will eventually wind down. Note that it makes a considerable noise, so it fails to be a machine "without losses or friction" - the sound energy being lost is evidence of that.

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1  
I was very interested in last device because it was very similar to the device that I made in my mind. If it is moving continuously and producing sound as well then it is producing energy. Although you have answered in detail, I am collecting magnets to do my own experiments and understand the flaws. –  LifeH2O Dec 30 '12 at 18:28
    
claps - well done Oddthinking! –  Andrew Heath Oct 14 '13 at 6:40

The old dream of a Perpetual motion, will never come true.

Reference

A more obscure category is a perpetual motion machine of the third kind, usually (but not always)[5] defined as one that completely eliminates friction and other dissipative forces, to maintain motion forever (due to its mass inertia). Third in this case refers solely to the position in the above classification scheme, not the third law of thermodynamics. Although it is impossible to make such a machine,[6][7] as dissipation can never be 100% eliminated in a mechanical system, it is nevertheless possible to get very close to this ideal (see examples in the Low Friction section). Such a machine would not serve as a source of energy but would have utility as a perpetual energy storage device.

Use of the term "impossible" and perpetual motion The seemingly mysterious ability of magnets to influence motion at a distance without any apparent energy source has long appealed to inventors. One of the earliest examples of a magnetic motor was proposed by Wilkins and has been widely copied since: it consists of a ramp with a magnet at the top, which pulled a metal ball up the ramp. Near the magnet was a small hole that was supposed to allow the ball to drop under the ramp and return to the bottom, where a flap allowed it to return to the top again. The device simply could not work: any magnet strong enough to pull the ball up the ramp would necessarily be too powerful to allow it to drop through the hole. Faced with this problem, more modern versions typically use a series of ramps and magnets, positioned so the ball is to be handed off from one magnet to another as it moves. The problem remains the same.

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Never is a pretty long timespan ;) ... still +1 and greetings to all Delphians out there g –  0xC0000022L Mar 12 '13 at 22:11

Energy is the basically a force applied to something over a distance. Now permanent magnets have the force. The problem is that you need to move something by that force to get the energy. (Or you can change the direction of the force which is not possible with permanent magnets) For example you bring one magnet's N pole to another magnets N pole. Now the magnets will move opposite to each other and for that there is an energy you can harvest. But the energy you spent to bring the magnets close to each other will always exceed the energy you get. So it means you cannot use permanent magnets to produce FREE energy. But certainly it is possible (And used) to use permanent magnets for energy generators.

Also bringing two N poles (or S poles) of permanent magnets closer will reduce the magnetic force in each magnets over time and thus make them useless in long terms.

In some experiments it might seem like Magnets are producing more energy than they are consuming but it always that there are some unseen energy spent to make the system working which is not taken into account.

If it is possible to harness energy directly (without movement of the magnets or something in the field from some other force) from a permanent magnet it would violate 2nd law of thermodynamics and thus many of the most respected theories of modern day physics. Which seems very unlikely.

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Please provide some references to support your claims. –  Sklivvz Jan 2 '13 at 13:17

protected by Community Apr 28 '13 at 13:49

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