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Magnetic Levitation using the Arduino

It’s been only a couple weeks since I discovered Arduino, an open source microcontroller platform. I was looking for a cheap interface between my laptop and electronic circuits. Arduino with its price $35 and easy to use development environment was the best choice. So after getting my Arduino Duemilanove board and ordering some cheap components from AllElectronics, I had everything to start working on my old dream, making a magnet fly. Well, float.

Update: detailed description here

It took only a few days to figure out all the problems and my magnet floating device was born:

Magnetic LevitationAs you can see by the blurred edges, the tiny magnet oscillates a bit. After a good calibration, the oscillations can be kept very small and the magnet can keep hovering for minutes. The big dart is much more stable and can float pretty much indefinitely. The device uses a small Hall effect sensor (SS19 from Honeywell, available for $0.50 from AllElectronics) to sense the field of the permanent magnet and uses that information to modulate the magnetic field of the electromagnet. Since the sensor is on the electromagnet,

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