Alumni Update: James Wang '19
Fulbright Scholar in Paris
James Wang '19 (Environmental Science and Electrical Engineering) is currently in Paris on a Fulbright Scholarship. His scholarship consists of two parts: six months of attending a French university to receive his master’s degree and another six months carrying out research at a laboratory outside of school. At the moment, he is involved in the optimization of superconducting magnetic bearing (SMB) systems. The main application of these systems is for magnetic levitation to improve train efficiency.
Current "maglev" vehicles have magnets attached only to the train as it hovers over a steel rail. His research investigates the interaction between high temperature superconductors attached to a train and over a permanent magnet rail, which increases vehicles' stability, loading capacity, and speed. The team he is in is working on simulating different designs to increase the magnetic levitation force while decreasing economic cost. Soon, they will begin tests on a supercomputer to run through thousands of potential designs. Improvements in this sector will reduce carbon emissions from the transportation sector and decrease the amount of energy used for travel. Additional applications of SMB will improve the efficiency of flywheel energy storage systems and of motors to generate electricity.