Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show


The experimental Shinkansen maglev train topped 500 km/h (311 mph) with passengers onboard...

The Central Japan Railway Company has whisked passengers along a section of track at up to 500 km/h (311 mph) during testing of the Shinkansen maglev train. The BBC reports that one hundred wide-eyed train enthusiasts were onboard the train's first manned voyage, with trials to continue over eight days.  Read More

A new high-temperature superconductor can trap a record magnetic field of 17.6 Tesla, in a...

Researchers at the University of Cambridge have created a new high-temperature superconductor capable of trapping a magnetic field of 17.6 Tesla, improving on a record set over a decade ago. The advance is yet another step toward making superconductors viable for building effective large-scale smart electricity grids, maglev trains and flywheel energy storage.  Read More

A team lead by Dr Deng Zigang at Southwest Jiaotong University in China have built a magle...

Scientists at Southwest Jiaotong University in China have reportedly built a maglev train that could reach 1,800 mph (2,900 km/h). According to The Daily Mail, a vacuum is used to minimize air resistance. Project lead Dr Deng Zigang claims it could be used for military or space launch systems.  Read More

Design sketches of Elon Musk's proposed Hyperloop high-speed tube transport system

Now that the media kerfuffle surrounding Elon Musk's Hyperloop transit system proposal has settled down to a dull roar, it's a good time to step back and consider in detail some of the real innovations and difficult issues raised through analysis of the 57-page Hyperloop plan.  Read More

What will be pulling into the station in 50 years time?

Public transport systems offer many advantages over the personal alternatives when it comes to getting large numbers of people from A to B in style and safety - less congestion, less pollution and lower costs for starters. But while we certainly see plenty of impetus on the personal transport front here at Gizmag, fresh concepts for the future of mass transport don't seem to enjoy the same level of exposure, despite the fact that many cities around the world are still saddled with public transport infrastructure that's been in place for over a century. There are some radical plans in the works, however, and the 21st Century will undoubtedly bring with it a raft of people moving projects that redefine our notion of public transport. So just what will be pulling into the station in 50 years time? Read on for our pick of the most tantalizing concepts out there.  Read More

An ETT (Evacuated Tube Transport) line in which car-sized passenger/cargo capsules would t...

Although there are similarities to the Startram concept we looked at recently, this take on maglev-like transport is all on terra firma and, if it ever eventuates, would take passengers from New York to Beijing in just two hours. Advocates of Evacuated Tube Transport (ETT) claim it is silent, cheaper than planes, trains or cars and faster than jets.  Read More

The Startram orbital launch system would transport passengers and cargo into space in a ma...

Getting into space is one of the harder tasks to be taken on by humanity. The present cost of inserting a kilogram (2.2 lb) of cargo by rocket into Low Earth Orbit (LEO) is about US$10,000. A manned launch to LEO costs about $100,000 per kilogram of passenger. But who says we have to reach orbit by means of rocket propulsion alone? Instead, imagine sitting back in a comfortable magnetic levitation (maglev) train and taking a train ride into orbit.  Read More

The sensor uses maglev to analyze sample density

When one thinks of magnetic levitation, or maglev, one generally thinks of insanely fast floating trains or possibly even levitating cans and bottles. Well, scientists are reporting the development of a new use for the technology as an inexpensive sensor for analyzing food, water and other beverages.  Read More

Magnetic Levitation wind power generator

July 31, 2007 Sustainable generation of electric power is the key to realizing the vision of a world free from dependency on fossil fuels – the challenge is to ramp up the production of electricity to a level that can begin to approach the energy we get from burning coal and oil, without the perceived dangers of going nuclear. The combined threats of Peak Oil and global warming are spurring science into a furious new age of innovation. With almost daily breakthroughs in solar energy capture, battery technology and tidal energy harvesting, but the biggest contribution to green power thus far is coming from wind farming. The common windmill design used to capitalize on air currents, while centuries old, operates at around 1% efficiency in terms of the power it harvests from the wind, due to the deflective blade design and friction losses. But a new technology unveiled last year in China seeks to dramatically boost the output of wind-driven generators by using the virtually frictionless advantages of magnetically levitated turbines. Since there’s virtually no touching of moving parts, the Maglev wind turbine requires far less servicing than a traditional windmill – which dramatically lowers the operating costs to under five U.S. cents per kilowatt-hour. If projections are accurate, giant 1-gigawatt versions of these machines could have a 12-month ROI - a scenario sure to catch the eye of investors worldwide.  Read More

Maglev Train tops 500kmh

The Transrapid in Shanghai has set a new world for commercial railway systems of 501 kmh (311 mph). The maglev (magnetic levitation) train, which has no wheels, axels, engine or transmission, broke the 500 kmh mark on November 12 on the 30 km track between Long Yang Station and Pudong International Airport...  Read More

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