Although Earthlings haven’t yet figured out how to use the properties of magnetic levitation to develop true anti-gravity devices, the world does have several amazing examples of super-fast mag-lev trains that show off the technology.
Now comes Australian electrical engineering student, Chris Rieger, studying at the University of Queensland, to show the concepts of electromagnetic levitation and wireless power at work – with a floating lightbulb.
Details of the experiment can be found at Mr Rieger’s website, where he explains how his “levitating light bulb” project came to life over the past 6 months, and the people and designs that inspired him to copy others who had already created their own levitating light bulb projects.
His main inspiration for starting the project was when a gentleman by the name of Jeff Lieberman created his own levitating light, something that fascinated Mr Rieger and propelled him on the journey to build his own.
He didn’t just do a quick YouTube search to copy someone else’s video instructions on what to do, presumably because there weren’t any, and did the hard yards of, as Mr Rieger describes, “reading many academic papers and spending long nights reading up on pretty much every project which included wireless power transfer or magnetic levitation”.
He discovered many projects dealing with wireless power or magnetic levitation, but few that combined the two in the quest to create that light bulb levitation.
Chris Rieger explains the nitty-gritty details at his site at his site, and graciously acknowledges the work of Eric Talyor and that of a gentlemen named Marko in helping Rieger’s shape his own floating light success.
Video of the levitating light system is below, with Mr Rieger happy to share that he has “already begun building a new levitator, which is designed to have greater strength and a better control system”.
And while the light would fall should there be a power outage, as people have already noted online, it would be easy to “chain” the light to the ceiling and still have it both float and receive power wirelessly.
You could also have some kind of light shade or glass plate or plane attached to the ceiling above which the magnetic light would levitate and rest on when not on.
Alternatively, you could see levitating lights floating off the floor, rather floating just beneath the ceiling.
NineMSN reports Mr Rieger’s surprise at the praise and attention his maglev light has generated, but why not?
In a world where we expected The Jetsons style robots, flying cars and high altitude housing to have already been here by now, developments such as Chris Rieger’s, even though based on the work of others before him who have already accomplished the same thing, show us that humanity’s power and access to mental resources is limitless – and especially so when used for good, such as the joy of a levitating light.
So, congratulations, Chris Rieger – we hope your Electrical Engineering career blossoms and that we hear and see many more of your accomplishments in the years to come – and that we get to see a levitating light in real life somewhere sometime soon!
In the meantime, here’s the video below where you can see the light and levitation in action.