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Permanent Magnetic, Energy-Free Suspension

A Case Study in Efficiency

Phase 1 engineering, guideway construction and the assembly of the first of its kind magnetically suspended container freight transport carriage has been completed at the LEVX® demonstration site in Port Angeles, Washington.

The zero-energy permanent magnet suspension system used in the demonstration carriage has met the system's engineering specification for loads by using only half of the available repulsive forces to successfully levitate 90,000 pounds at a height of 1" above the guideway. Further evaluation of the system also confirmed the elimination of impact loads as the carriage glides along the rails. The patented magnetic suspension configuration sets LEVX® technologies apart from all other maglev systems and is a key factor in setting a new benchmark for energy efficiency.

Tests and observations support the earliest engineering projections that only 1 pound of force would be required to accelerate 1,000 pounds of carriage mass and that a fully loaded freight container weighing 34 tons could be transported along the guideway with less than 1/4 kWh of energy per mile.

The combination of energy free levitation, highly efficient propulsion and passive guidance has created the world's most efficient method of moving heavy loads. Review the Technology and Benefits sections to learn more about the advantages of LEVX® technologies.

1/4 kWh per mile

Energy to transport a 34 ton freight container 1 mile is less than 1/4 kWh

Static Weight Test

Freight Demo

The LEVX® container freight carriage features a patented magnetic suspension that requires zero energy to hold the carriage at least 1" above its guideway with no weight bearing wheels. Initially the freight carriage was analyzed with no load for stability. Next the freight deck was nested into its place atop the carriage and the LEVX® team members gathered data and studied carriage performance under increasing payloads.

The initial static weight tests have been conducted by loading the freight deck with preformed concrete jersey barriers each weighing 3,800 pounds. Data was collected with each addition of weight including monitoring of the air gap between the wheel-less carriage and track. The results have perfectly matched our engineering specifications for varying loads.

Next steps include installation of the proprietary LEVX® propulsion and primary braking systems with more testing to follow.

Learn more about the patented LEVX® magnetic suspension system.

Concept to Reality

Container Freight

The LEVX® technologies were first developed at "passenger scale" with dual rail guideway structures capable of levitating vehicles weighing 1,000 pounds per linear foot at a standard 1" air gap between carriage components and supporting track. That equates to a 40' long carriage, similar to a large transit bus, that would magnetically suspend a 40,000 pound gross vehicle weight.

Currently, we are working with a heavy duty, "freight scale" design capable of magnetically suspending vehicles weighing 2,000 pounds per linear foot. That equates to a 40' long carriage that would support an 80,000 pound gross vehicle weight.

The process is always very similar. First, comes a lot of thought and then a vision of the concept. Perhaps some preliminary testing is done to verify the concept as viable. Next, we produce drawings leading to the manufacture of a full scale prototype. Manufacture of the prototype is followed by extensive testing to provide validation of the design. Prototypes lead into final engineering for manufacturer preparedness, more full scale demonstrations and choosing the path for commercialization of a new technology.

Perpetual Defiance of Gravity
No Energy Required!

2.5+ Inch Air Gap

• 2.5+" air gap - 0 jersey barriers - empty freight deck
• 1.65" air gap - 10 jersey barriers - a total of 38,000 pounds or about the average weight for a 40' freight container
• 1" air gap - 18 jersey barriers - a total of 68,400 pounds or more than maximum weight for a fully loaded 40' freight container

Civil Structures

Custom guideway designs and the selection of construction materials will vary by project. Our Phase 1 guideway construction utilized a combination of concrete and steel components, ordinary skills and common equipment.

Visit our Civil Engineering page for details:
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