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December 21, 2015 AT 4:00 pm

How Quantum Magnetic Levitation Works

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Great article from Scientific American:

Quantum magnetic levitation boils down to something called the Meissner effect, which only occurs when a material is cold enough to behave like a superconductor. At normal temperatures, magnetic fields can pass through the material normally. Once it is cold enough to exhibit superconductivity, however, those magnetic fields get expelled. Any magnetic fields that were passing through must instead move around it. When a magnet is placed above a superconductor at critical temperature, the superconductor pushes away its field by acting like a magnet with the same pole causing the magnet to repel, that is, “float”—no magical sleight of hand required.

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