A MagLab Overview
The only facility of its kind in the United States, the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (less formally known as the Magnet Lab) is the largest and highest-powered magnet laboratory in the world, headquartered in a sprawling 370,000-square-foot complex near Florida State University in Tallahassee. The lab also includes sites at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico and the University of Florida in Gainesville. Together these three institutions operate the lab, collaborating in a unique, interdisciplinary way to advance basic science, engineering and technology in the 21st century.
Established by the National Science Foundation in 1990, the lab is a national resource open to both curious visitors and world-renowned scientists. Centralizing the country's greatest magnet-related tools, resources and expertise is not only efficient and cost-effective, but also encourages fruitful, collaborative research at the highest level. Every year, more than 900 visiting scientists and engineers from across the world conduct experiments using our state-of-the-art equipment. Our magnets are far larger, far more powerful and far more complex than the everyday magnets most people are familiar with. Many were designed, developed and built by our magnet engineering and design team, widely recognized as the finest in the world.
These magnets produce tremendous magnetic fields, prized by researchers who use them to study a wide range of materials and processes. Our most powerful magnets produce fields more than a million times stronger than the Earth's magnetic field. What happens in experiments under such conditions give scientists important insights that pave the way for advances in physics, biology, bioengineering, chemistry, geochemistry, biochemistry, materials science and engineering.
In fact, high magnetic fields play a critical role in developing new materials that affect nearly every modern technology. Electric lights, computers, motors, plastics, high-speed trains and MRI all came about after researchers learned more about materials and living structures through magnet-related research. The vast scope of work currently underway at the lab includes the study of new superconductors with the potential to revolutionize how power is stored and delivered; a search for new medicines; and analysis of petroleum samples that could lead to better oil extraction.
For specific information on our three sites, please use these links: