Tuesday, May 23, 2017

#560 : M - Magnetic Levitation

  My first brush with MagLev or Magnetic Levitation was during my 12th standard. That concept was not a part of my syllabus, but our physics tuition teacher saw it fit to educate us as to how bullet trains work. MagLev then came back to haunt me during my engineering coursework. No doubt, it is an interesting topic, but if the person teaching it does nothing but just name dropping, it would obviously lead to boredom.


Magnetic levitation, maglev, or magnetic suspension is a method by which an object is suspended with no support other than magnetic fields. Magnetic force is used to counteract the effects of the gravitational acceleration and any other accelerations.

The two primary issues involved in magnetic levitation are lifting forces: providing an upward force sufficient to counteract gravity, and stability: ensuring that the system does not spontaneously slide or flip into a configuration where the lift is neutralized.

Reminds me of the levitation charm from Harry Potter. This one reference I can't help but make here. Wingardium Leviosa! boom! you can levitate a damn train or whatever you want. Just that you can try that with humans. How I wish I could levitate things as I walk, that would make a lot of things easier (but errr.................. on the hindsight, it would cause traffic up there and would possibly interfere with choppers and planes?)

The practical uses of Magentic Levitation include  maglev trains, contactless melting, and magnetic bearings. Here is a little video of  Maglev explained.

This is one interesting concept from physics. Do read and watch the video!


  1. Padicha physics/ padikatha physics ellam maranthe pochu.. It's a nice refresher :)

    So, being the physics freak that you are, can you please research and tell me whether Magneto uses the same principle to fly? :)

    Good post. Keep up the pace, keep going !!!

  2. Magneto :-/ Marvel comics! Seriously?!

  3. Yeah, he is my second favorite villain after The Joker. Don't you like him?

  4. I haven't watched much of marvel movies! Joker yes, he is just class apart

  5. Ok cool, X-Men is one superb franchise. If at all, you have plans to watch them, start from X-Men - First Class, that released in 2000.

    Yeah, about Joker, no second thoughts :) He is a dream come true for any author. But he is also once in a century kinda character. It's so difficult to create such a unique character, although I would love to :P

  6. X-Men! Sigh. Will try. No plans though! Good luck on recreating Joker 😎

  7. Hmmm, thanks Janani. Leaving the superhero side, I guess you will like Magneto as a character, do give X-Men a try.