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Micro-Scale Diamagnetic Levitation: Application to an Inclinometer

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Abstract:

Diamagnetism is a magnetic property that is seldom exploited due to the weakness of the forces it generates. Previous publications have shown that diamagnetic volume forces can be enhanced by reducing both the scale of the magnets and of the diamagnetic bodies. At micrometer scale, the diamagnetic forces can compensate the force of gravity and even overcome it. Levitation can easily be obtained at the micro-scale. However, no former research is reported on the interest of diamagnetic micro-levitation for sensing applications. The present paper demonstrates the feasibility and the interest of an inclinometer with a diamagnetically levitating proof mass at the micro-scale. The principle of this inclinometer is presented. Experimental and simulated results are compared and differences discussed. A new design and technological solutions for a future prototype is given.

Keywords: DIAMAGNETIC LEVITATION; INCLINOMETER; MICRO-SENSOR; SCALE REDUCTION; SEMI-ANALYTICAL SIMULATION

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1166/sl.2009.1086

Publication date: June 1, 2009

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