More than five years have passed since the time in whichMarty from the science fiction movie "Back to the Future II" first showed a skateboard operating on the principles of levitation, called the hoverboard. However, the reality is far from the movie and modern engineers are still struggling with the task of creating a working prototype of a flying hoverboard.
A group of engineers associated with the popular YouTubechannel Hacksmith Industries, which have already created more than one original device from the future (a Jedi sword and an exoskeleton for lifting a car by hands), came closest to the practical implementation of the idea of a hoverboard flying over the surface with the help of rotating magnets.
Currently created by a mechanical studentfrom University of Waterloo Jimmy Zhou's hoverboard prototype has a number of limitations. First of all, the device can only fly over a metal surface with good conductivity. To hover in the air, the hoverboard uses eddy currents in the steel sheet, generated by rotating magnets placed on the skateboard. In turn, the circular electric currents of the steel sheet generate a magnetic field that keeps the hoverboard in the air.
A significant disadvantage of the invention isincreased fire hazard of a hoverboard that heats up during operation and can ignite spontaneously. In addition, the prototype can only hover in the air above a surface with good electrical conductivity. However, Zhou's prototype is vastly superior to Lexus's hoverboard, which must be cooled to -197 degrees Celsius with liquid nitrogen to function properly.