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B Magnetism - ring and a sphere (or any other object) inside

  1. Apr 9, 2017 #1
    Hey, is it possible to have a cylindrical ring (made of permanent magnet) and a magnetic sphere sitting inside it and staying in one place without touching the inner sides of the ring and not falling through?

    The object doesn't necessarily have to be a sphere. If it would work with any other shaped object it would also be fine. The main problem is, would be able to stay inside.

    The illustration:
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 9, 2017 #2


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    I don't think so. Magnetic levitation via static fields is not stable and the object would most likely either fall through or touch the side.
  4. Apr 9, 2017 #3


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    2017 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    Magnetic levitation will need one of those elements:
    - active electromagnets controlling the position
    - some point of contact of the levitated object (so it is not completely free)
    - rotation of something, typically the levitated object
    - superconductors
    - strong permanent magnets and very exotic lightweight diamagnetic materials that can't carry any additional load
    - strong electromagnets and diamagnetic materials
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