Superconductor Magnetic Levitation
Videos for Engineers

Superconductor Magnetic Levitation - RF Cafe Video for EngineersWe have been treated to videos of superconductor levitation for many years, so watching a super-cooled object float above a magnet is nothing new. The novel factor in this demonstration is an effect called quantum flux tube formation (Trekkies must love that term) where the properties of the superconductor are such that rather than completely repelling the magnetic filed, which is the norm for superconductors, portals are created through the material where flux line clusters actually retain the puck. In the other demos, you see a small puck levitating over a large magnet. Here, it is the opposite. Rather than being constrained by the magnetic wrapping around the perimeter of the puck and pretty much locking it in place, this structure allows the supercooled puck to move around within the field. It can run along a track impeded only by air resistance. Another unique result of the quantum flux tubes is that not only can the puck float above the magnet, but it can also be suspended beneath the magnet.

The video and research was done by the superconductivity group at Tel Aviv University.

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Posted October 25, 2011