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Author Topic: Make your own Magnetic Linear Accelerator!
Snaggy

Sir Snaggalot!
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Icon 14 posted February 22, 2002 08:53      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Forwarding this very cool link...

The Gauss Rifle:
A Magnetic Linear Accelerator

We've added a new toy at http://scitoys.com that we've been having great fun with.

It shoots a steel marble at high speed, using only permanent magnets for propulsion.
You can build it in a few minutes by taping some magnets onto a wooden ruler.
All of the instructions can be found at
http://scitoys.com/scitoys/scitoys/magnets/gauss.html
along with lots of pictures, and an explanation of the science that makes it work.

The ball shoots through the device in 1/15th of a second, making a wonderful
clacking sound as it is accelerated from one magnet to the next. Everyone who
sees it fire gasps and laughs in surprise at the speed and simplicity of this little toy.

Have fun!

Simon Quellen Field


Posts: 8111 | From: Canada | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged
quantumfluff
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 09:44      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Snaggy: Showing this to me is a bad, bad thing. Let's see, 4 magnets and nine balls for a 1 foot device. I should only need about 50 steel balls for a proper sized one
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Janeway
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 10:50      Profile for Janeway   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That is so cool. I'm going to check out some of the other projects too. Reminds me of last summer when I helped some of the kids around here make rockets. Not real ones. We used card stock for the body, a clear film cannister for the engine, and alka-seltzer and water for the fuel. Heck of a lot cheaper than buying model rocket kits. Messier too, though. BTW, anyone who tries this, I recommended wearing safety goggles. Alka-seltzer in the eyes is not fun.


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macadddikt18
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 10:53      Profile for macadddikt18   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
thoughts of destruction are now coming to mind. I wonder if i can do this with a 2 by 4 and some speaker magnets?
Nayt

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Through out your life you will wonder who THEY are. Then you find out who THEY really are. From then on you live you life in fear of THEM and you wish you never knew who THEY were.


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Angry Rooster
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 11:47      Profile for Angry Rooster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Speaker magnets would likely have too large a magnetic field, I doubt it would let go of the second ball in the line.

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--Angry Rooster
"Eagles may soar, but roosters don't get sucked into jet engines."


Posts: 376 | From: Coeur d'Alene, ID, USA | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
macadddikt18
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 12:39      Profile for macadddikt18   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
hum, must find a way to make it work.
Nayt

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Tau Zero
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 12:50      Profile for Tau Zero     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That's not really a Gauss rifle.  That's just using the delta-energy between a ball right up against a magnet and a ball on the far side of another ball on a magnet, plus some hammer effects, to get a ball up to a medium speed.  If you fired this at an angle you probably couldn't get very much altitude.

A real Gauss rifle would use sequentially triggered solenoid coils.  You could probably build one out of disposable camera flash units.


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quantumfluff
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 14:36      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Possibly charged big-ass capacitors could juice the solenoids. I've thought about this in the past, but I've wondered about how to sequence the coils. One school of thought is that the controller knows when to turn on the next coil based on the actual accleration of the projectiile. Another is to have the projectile trigger the next coil in some way. I think this could be done with photocell sensors.
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The Pope of Perl
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Icon 1 posted February 22, 2002 15:11      Profile for The Pope of Perl     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Angry Rooster:

A speaker magnet would probably let go of the steel ball, since the next magnet is influencing it. I'd expect that the last magnet would release the ball as well.

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He's back, and this time it's personal!


Posts: 42 | From: Terra | Registered: Feb 2002  |  IP: Logged
ZorroTheFox
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 12 posted February 22, 2002 21:32      Profile for ZorroTheFox   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I wonder how big I could make it before I get in trouble with the locals.......Z
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BlueAntoid
Mini Geek
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Icon 6 posted February 22, 2002 22:08      Profile for BlueAntoid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Sweet! \^o^/
I have to make me one of them...
/me slaps himself in the face until his grammar returns to normal.

Posts: 67 | From: Colorado | Registered: Dec 2001  |  IP: Logged
macadddikt18
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted February 23, 2002 12:16      Profile for macadddikt18   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
if i build it in some type of encloser i could silence those yelping dogs behind me,
Nayt

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Through out your life you will wonder who THEY are. Then you find out who THEY really are. From then on you live you life in fear of THEM and you wish you never knew who THEY were.


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Dr Cyclops
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Icon 4 posted February 23, 2002 12:57      Profile for Dr Cyclops   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That's nothing. I am currently working on a rail gun for the school science fair. It uses laser activated electromagnets instead of perminint ceramics. it should be able to break cinder blocks at 50+- yards.
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quantumfluff
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 1 posted February 23, 2002 19:39      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Really? I've always wanted to build a rail gun but if my wife found out she would kill me (or at least suck all the fun from the project). Is this your own school fair or your kid's fair? It's not that strange a question. Last spring I helped my daughter build a maglev train for her science fair.

How does the laser meet the electromagnet?
Are you using the breaking of the beam by the projectile to trigger the magnets or something else entirely.


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Dr Cyclops
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Icon 10 posted February 24, 2002 06:02      Profile for Dr Cyclops   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, i don't want to tell too much because it sounds like you are capible of recreating it and improving on it far beyond my ablity. When i was in fifth grade i built a little maglev tank. It didnt work. This is for my own - ness. but if i go to the state science fair, i'm almost garunteed a scholarship to NMT!
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quantumfluff
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Icon 1 posted February 24, 2002 08:29      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks for the vote of confidence that I can improve on it, but that's probably only because I have deeper pockets.

The maglev tank is a cool idea, if you have a highly magnetized battle field. Our train worked because we had magnets that repulsed each other as the rail and on the bottom of the train. Once you add a center rail to keep the train from moving off from the magnets, it's pretty simple.

I have one word of caution on entering the rail gun in a science fair. Check if there is some zero-tolerance for weapons kind of policy going on. I've read about utterly ridiculous happening in school settings where students were suspended for having things which "could be confused with real guns", even when there was no possible way a thinking person could be confused. e.g. a 1 inch long platic gun on a keychain, a prop pistol in a school play.

I don't mean to scare you, I just think you should check first to make sure that some blow-hard administrator is not going to make a scene. Go to the contest sponsors first, and if they OK it, then ask your advisors at school. If they give you a hard time, you have the backing of the state people to stand on.

Hope you get the scholorship.


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Evilbunny
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Icon 1 posted February 24, 2002 09:10      Profile for Evilbunny   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
YESS!!! My own large particle accelerator! Higg's Boson, here I come!
Posts: 904 | From: A Calculus book near you... | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
TheAnnoyedCockroach
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Icon 1 posted February 24, 2002 18:26      Profile for TheAnnoyedCockroach   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hmmm.... I must try this wonderous device. And then build a really big one. Yeah.

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If you flip a coin a thousand times, how many times would it end up heads?


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macadddikt18
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted February 24, 2002 19:14      Profile for macadddikt18   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
yes, must play with this new found weapon.
Nayt

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Through out your life you will wonder who THEY are. Then you find out who THEY really are. From then on you live you life in fear of THEM and you wish you never knew who THEY were.


Posts: 1870 | From: In a world beyond your understanding | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged


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