Engineers at LaunchPoint Technologies have been working with Applied Levitation and Fastransit Inc., to develop a completely new, revolutionary mode of maglev transportation using stabilized permanent magnets. They seem to have not gotten funding since prototypes were made. It is interesting technology.
Applied Levitation LLC has its origins in Magtube Inc. where our permanent magnet levitation technology was initially developed and tested on a full-scale prototype capsule. Since then we have expanded our research and changed the name of the company to reflect the departure from a focus on underground freight transport. With funding from our partners LaunchPoint Technologies Inc. and Fastransit Inc. we have just finished the proof-of-concept phase of our electromagnetic stabilization technology which will allow vehicles to levitate above a magnetic track without the need for side rails to control lateral position. We are currently seeking investment partners to help us with the third and final phase of our technology development: a full-scale vehicle and demonstration track.
Applied Levitation’s Stabilized Permanent Magnet (SPM) suspension technology (U.S. Patent #6,684,794) provides capabilities that were not previously possible and at a lower cost than any other high-capacity approach.
* Low capital cost–SPM maglev guideways can be built, mile for mile, for about the same cost as one lane of freeway with twenty times the carrying capacity.
* Easily integrated–Existing rail and subway systems can be easily retrofitted with SPM maglev capabilities, enabling incremental upgrades of an aging infrastructure.
* Fast switching–SPM maglev technology uses instant magnetic switching with no moving parts which enables more efficient routing of computer-controlled maglev vehicles.
* Network capability (Mag-NetTM)–With SPM maglev technology and instant magnetic switching, transportation networks can be developed to route traffic in much the same way as information is routed over the internet.
* Highly scalable–SPM maglev technology can be used with smaller, lighter vehicles for more efficient passenger transportation, or with bigger, heavier vehicles for the transport of freight.
Cross-section of Maglev Rails with Standard Train Rails
SPM maglev technology will permit incremental upgrade of our current rail and subway systems. By installing SPM guideways on the same ties as existing tracks, with one maglev rail outside each of the existing steel rails and a motor rail down the center, SPM maglev vehicles can operate simultaneously with standard rail and subway vehicles. As a result, existing rail and subway cars can remain in operation as we gradually replace them with new maglev vehicles that cost less and perform far better. This capability avoids the need to completely overhaul our current infrastructure at tremendous cost.
SPM maglev is well suited for freight transport due to its efficiency, speed and flexibility. The video below shows a dockside facility, where container ships can be unloaded or loaded directly from/to maglev flatbeds. From there the flatbeds could transport containers to nearby marshalling yards for transfer to railcars or trucks, or could carry them via long distance maglev connections to other parts of the country. Facilities of this type would speed up harbor freight operations, slash energy costs, and totally eliminate harbor air pollution normally created by railroad and truck operations.
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Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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