Magnetic propulsion is the act of moving an object with magnetic fields and a flowing electrical current. The current is used to manipulate the system’s magnetic field or charge a fluid in the system that can be repelled. The Lorentz force then pushes the conductor in a direction that is perpendicular to the magnetic field and the conductor. The repulsing force is then used to propel the system, which is designed to take advantage of this effect. Governments and industries continue to invest significant time and money into the field due to its cost savings potential when compared to traditional fossil fuel systems.
What is the Difference between Magnetic Propulsion and Electric Motors?
The biggest difference between a magnetic propulsion system and those that use electric motors is that magnetic propulsion does not create rotational energy that is used for motion. Electric motors use electricity to move the components of the propulsion system in order to accelerate mass. Although both methods result in creating force that results in a body moving, magnetic propulsion is a fundamentally different system.
When was Magnetic Propulsion First Used?
Professor Elihu Thomson discovered in 1889 that electricity and magnetic fields could be used to accelerate mass. Emile Bachelet later researched about how to use this method to move carriages. James R. Powell and Gordon Danby further advanced the principle in the 1960s and expanded the research to superconducting magnetic transportation systems. The first train that used this method of propulsion was deployed in 1984. Technology has continued to advance since this time, resulting in bullet trains that can exceed 580 KM/H.
What are the Uses for Magnetic Propulsion?
Magnetic propulsion is not just used for bullet train transportation. It is used for other forms of commercial transportation and in theme parks for roller coasters, water rides, etc. Additionally, the aerospace industry has used magnetic propulsion principles to conduct precise satellite orbit and power spacecraft adjustment. The military has significantly researched using magnetic propulsion for submarines, ships, and weaponry.