Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Couple magnetic experimental questions

  1. Jul 20, 2010 #1
    So I am considering attempting to build a couple of projects to fill in some time, and I am looking for critiques and help on creating these.. Both deal with spherical metal balls (most likely iron, or maybe even a magnet) and a magnetic field.

    1. I would like to make something like a particle accelerator, but instead of accelerating particles I would be accelerating a metal or magnetic sphere around a track. My idea is to place electromagnets, more like solenoid coils around the track to keep the ball accelerating around the track. The problem is how would I keep the sphere suspended in the field without it falling or hitting the side of the track in between the magnets? I thought maybe I would just have to have the entire track be surrounded by these, and simply have a circuit board or a program that would alternate the current on the magnets. I obviously do not need to have it in a vacuum (or would I...), but again my problem is keeping the sphere suspended in the middle of the track without hitting the sides.

    2. This is more speculative, and if it is possible it would be interesting to make... Similar to the first project, I would suspend a magnet/ metal sphere in a magnetic field. Now, is it possible to have the object rotate using only magnetic fields? I would think I could make it rotate about its poles, but in thought I dont know if it would make the sphere spin uniformly or if it would wobble more than spin. Essentially it would be the same thing as the first, where I would have alternating current on an electromagnet?

    Any help is appreciated. If anyone has any resources in respect to these questions, please feel free to post away! Thanks.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 20, 2010 #2
    What you want is the something like a linear induction motor.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linear_motor" [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  4. Jul 20, 2010 #3
    I have seen a little bit on that, and looked at youtube videos on having thsoe built. However, I would like to see if I could make it a circular track instead of a straight tube.

    It appears that I could have a track that WAS a magnet (or lined with magnets), and then provide currents to separate electromagnets to propel the sphere?
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook