# Electromagnetic Levitation for a stationary hoverboard - How can I do it?

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I am University Student currently working on a project to make a stationary hover board. This is just a prototype and does not need to support a human and only needs to support about 1kg but with as much "lift" or distance between the magnets as possible - (100mm?)

Ideally we want to be able to control the hover board by varying the magnetism of each magnet and so initially we have tested electromagnets (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/12V-DC-Su...hash=item23662f9783:m:m8e-RjEY1odRj8cJupM1ymg) and although the attraction force was very strong they did not repel well at all- about 4mm.

We then tried 25x25mm Neodymium magnets with much better results (70mm lift) but we don't know how to vary or control the magnetism to control the hover board. We want to use an Arduino to make the board move on its own hence the initial thought of using electromagnets.

Any help would be much appreciated!

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anorlunda
Staff Emeritus
Magnetic forces diminish rapidly with distance. Is there a specific reason want you can't achieve your goals with 4 mm lift?

anorlunda
Staff Emeritus
Magnetic forces diminish rapidly with distance. Is there a specific reason want you can't achieve your goals with 4 mm lift?
Edit: welcome to physics forums

sophiecentaur
Gold Member
Most teens and kids are interested to ride on the hoverboard.
That so-called Hoverboard appears to have wheels. So much for hovering!!

I think I understand the problem, and you don't have an easy solution. Magnetism loses its strength rapidly as you move away from it, and if you add the two poles of the magnet constantly wanting to flip your board over then you have a tough road ahead.

You might not need to use electromagnets though. If memory serves, there are a few materials that block/weaken magnetic force. If you get powerful enough magnets to give you the lift separation you want, then a mechanical system to block a small number of the magnets on one side or another might give you what you need.

I'm thinking that for stability you should use a shape like a quadcopter to spread out the forces and prevent flipping. Then use a shutter system to block some of the magnetism on one side. I don't think you would be able to turn using this system, but it should give you 2 axis movement.