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Ever tried to reinvent the wheel? One Young Scientist is doing just that

It’s a system called a emission-free omnidirectional magnetic driving system. Now, let’s get our heads around that…
Jan 11th 2019, 3:00 PM 10,441 8


THE WHEEL HAS served us well for millennia, but Alice Shaughnessy thinks we can do better.

The student from Calasanctius College in Co Galway has developed what she calls an emission-free omnidirectional magnetic driving system.

She is demonstrating the system at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.

The system uses a sphere instead of a traditional wheel, meaning it can be turned in any direction.

This sphere is connected to a larger sphere, which is surrounded by magnets. These magnets can be covered using a small electric motor with a tiny shield.

When the shield is active, it interacts with the larger sphere, when it’s closed, it doesn’t. By operating them in sequence, this makes the sphere move, providing movement.

Alice hopes the method could be scaled up to power cars, wheelchairs, and even robotics.

Alice explains the process more in the video above.

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Nicky Ryan


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