A Small, Portable Gravitation Shield

About: I love doing practical things about science, but, sadly, it is not quite what you usually learn at school, so for the last 8 years of my life I remained the only crazy kid who has a closet full of metal junk...

Intro: A Small, Portable Gravitation Shield

Yes, it is a real gravitation shield! Well, not really, but it is a great thing to astonish people at first and then make them remember the electromagnetism they have been taught at school. It is also a great conversation and demonstration piece in a class studying electromagnetism.
Also, it can be done in five minutes if you find the materials.
It DOES nothing, but, to keep it short if a magnet moves near a conductive something it creates electric currents in it. In the tube they  go around the circumference of the tube and create their own magnetic field, which repulses our magnet. And this makes it fall 4 times slower.

Step 1: Find the Tube

You need a longish (30 cm - 2 meters, it is perfectly your choice, about 1-3 cm inner diameter ) piece of conductive and non-ferromagnetic tube. Aluminium works well, but before buying it search the house, it is very likely that you'll  find it somewhere. I cut a piece of the hanger rack from an old wardrobe.

Step 2: Now the Magnets

Now the hardest, bur not really hard part. You have to find a strong rare-earth magnet that fits in your tube. I really like it with a spherical magnet, but it is left at school, so I used a stack of ordinary ones instead. They should be able to move inside without touching the tube, but there shouldn't be more than 2 mm between the magnets and the walls of the tube (it depends on the strength of the magnet).

Step 3: Finished

Well, everything is  now, but before showing it to anyone, it is better to understand completely how it works, otherwise you won't impress anyone that much! 
When you are sure you understand the theory completely, stick the magnets inside the tube and have fun!
 PS I've tried to attach a file with a totally useless something (and it is in Russian), but there is a wonderful picture there that explains everything if you meditate over it for 15 minutes. 

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    23 Discussions

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    cvdammbigb62533

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I think you mean those Faraday lights? They operate by having a magnet passing through coils, which causes electromagnetic induction.

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    nerd7473cvdamm

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    neat i like induction especially from the tesla coil Nicola Tesla was a cool guy

    I suppose not. In the ones I've seen there is just a metal ball inside that makes a contact when the thing is shaken, but I am not sure whick ones are you talking about.

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    nerd7473

    6 years ago on Introduction

    I have abunch of capacitors and a bunch of electronics

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    signposts

    7 years ago on Introduction

    For all those wondering what this does i will try to explain. I did this in one of my science classes a few months back and basically when you drop the magnet into the pipe (FYI we use a copper pipe) it creates an electric current similar to a generator. This in turn creates its own magnetic field as it is an electric current and this causes the magnet to slow down. so the end result is that the magnet takes several times longer to come out the bottom of the pipe and thus creates an effect that resembles a "gravity shield" as the gravity appears to have been reduced. Hope this helps someone.

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    Craig 444

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Haha this thing is awesome. I honestly have no idea why you would want to make it (besides hitting someone with it) but it's cool. Thanks for sharing!

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    nb109

    7 years ago on Introduction

    I think what everyone's getting at could best be summarized as "What does it do?"

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    franklferg

    7 years ago on Introduction

    dude its some magnets in a tube please explain the purpose!!!!

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    steveastrouk

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Eddy -current damping

    Nice Instructable, maybe it should say eddy current damping somewhere (and not in Cyrillic !!)

    4 replies

    The thing in Cyrillic has very little connection with magnets falling through tubes. It is some strange people's article from a scientific magazine, but it has a nice picture.

    You learn something new every day. Thank you ;-)

    You are quite right (and so is your spelling)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eddy_current

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    mrmath

    7 years ago on Introduction

    I'm sorry. I don't get it. Once you have the tube and the magnets, then what?

    Also, you have two pics of the magnets in step two, but no explanation as to what the difference is. Can you clear that up, too, please?

    2 replies
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    gruffalo childmrmath

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    You just let the magnets fall through the tube and see what happens...
    One of the magnet photos is the way I store them- with little plastic circles between them, and the second one is how I use them (they are stronger when closer to each other).