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IPFS News Link • Science

Physicists could do the 'impossible': Create and destroy magnetic fields from afar

• Live Science - Stephanie Pappas

The method involves running electric current through a special arrangement of wires to create a magnetic field that looks as if it came from another source. This illusion has real applications: Imagine a cancer drug that could be delivered directly to a tumor deep in the body by capsules made of magnetic nanoparticles. It's not possible to stick a magnet in the tumor to guide the nanoparticles on their journey, but if you could create a magnetic field from outside the body that centered right on that tumor, you could deliver the drug without an invasive procedure. 

The strength of a magnetic field decreases with distance from the magnet, and a theorem proven in 1842, Earnshaw's Theorem, says that it's not possible to create a spot of maximum magnetic field strength in empty space.