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Magnetic Levitation and How It Works

by Hale L. on January 23, 2023

Magnetic levitation, or "maglev," is a technology that uses magnetic fields to suspend an object in midair. This technology has been used in various forms for decades, but it has recently found a new application in the form of magnetic levitation toys. These toys use the same principles of maglev to create a floating, mesmerizing display that has captivated audiences for years. One such product is Ascendice, a levitating D20, a 20 sided of die used in many tabletop role-playing games.

The history of magnetic levitation can be traced back to the early 20th century, when scientists first began experimenting with the concept. In the 1930s, a scientist named Dr. Ernst Alexanderson discovered that he could levitate a small metal ring using a combination of alternating currents and magnetic fields. This was the first recorded instance of magnetic levitation, but it would be several decades before the technology was advanced enough to be used in practical applications.

In the 1960s, researchers at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York began developing a high-speed maglev train system. This system used superconducting magnets to levitate the train above a guideway, allowing it to travel at incredibly high speeds with minimal friction. This technology was later adopted by other countries, and maglev trains are now in use in several locations around the world.

Ascendice levitating D20 uses a combination of a permanent magnet and an electromagnet to achieve levitation. A powerful magnetic Neodymium Core is located inside the dead centre of each die, while the electromagnet is located in the base unit. The base unit is connected to a power source, and the electromagnet is powered by an alternating current. This creates a magnetic field that oppose the permanent magnet inside the die, causing it to levitate. Ascendice is also equipped with multiple sensors that detects the position of the die and adjust the magnetic field hundreds of times a second to keep it in the desired midair position. This allows the die to remain levitated even when it is being moved or spun.

The key to making this work is that the magnetic field of the electromagnet is adjustable, so that the levitation height can be controlled. This is typically done by adjusting the current flowing through the coil of the electromagnet. 

Ascendice is not only a mesmerizing display, but it is also a functional game piece. The die can be spun in mid-air and used for gameplay just like a regular die. It makes for a great conversation piece and it adds a unique touch to any tabletop gaming setup.

Overall, magnetic levitation is a fascinating technology that has a long history and a wide range of applications. From high-speed trains to mesmerizing toys like the Ascendice levitating D20, magnetic levitation continues to amaze and captivate people of all ages. It's a great example of how science and technology can be used to create something truly unique and beautiful. With the ability to customize and personalize it, the Ascendice is a perfect fit for anyone looking to add a touch of magic to their gaming setup.


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