The use of guideways that combine permanent magnets and soft ferromagnetic materials is a common practice in magnetic levitation transport systems (maglevs) with bulk high-temperature superconductors. Theoretical tools to simulate in a realistic way both the behavior of all elements (permanent magnets, soft ferromagnet and superconductor) and their mutual effects are helpful to optimize the designs of real systems. Here we present a systematic study of the levitation of a maglev with translational symmetry consisting of a superconducting bar and a guideway with two identic permanent magnets and a soft ferromagnetic material between them. The system is simulated with a numerical model based on the energy minimization method that allows to analyze the mutual interaction of the superconductor, assumed to be in the critical state, and a soft ferromagnet with infinite susceptibility. Results indicate that introducing a soft ferromagnet within the permanent magnets not only increases the levitation force but also improves the stability. Besides, an estimation of the relative sizes and shapes of the soft ferromagnet, permanent magnets and the superconductor in order to obtain large levitation force with full stability is provided. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
- Magnetic levitation
- Superconducting ferromagnetic interaction