What Forces Are Involved in A Hoverboard? (Answered)

Hoverboards are a unique addition to anyone’s collection, especially when you’re familiar with how versatile they are. 

With hoverboards, you can transport yourself in an eco-friendly way because rechargeable batteries power them. 

However, there’s more to hoverboards than versatility/eco-friendly transportation, such as the forces that allow them “hover.”

If you’ve been wondering what forces are involved in the unique movement of a hoverboard, you’ll get all the answers here.

The forces involved in a hoverboard are the unique ways the gyroscope, sensors, and logic board interact to achieve the self-balancing feature. Tilt sensors detect tilts and communicate with the gyroscope, which relays this to the logic board. Instinctively, the logic board makes the motors spin to achieve the hovering feature. 

In this article, I will explain the physics of a hoverboard, the principles of a hoverboard, and how a hoverboard balances itself. 

By the end, you will understand the overall workings of a hoverboard and be more familiar with the forces that drive it.

What Are the Physics of a Hoverboard? 

What Forces Are Involved in a Hoverboard

The hoverboard is based on the physics theory known as electromagnetism which focuses on the relationship between electric and magnetic fields.

Electromagnetism is employed in the design of the four disc-shaped hover engines located beneath a hoverboard. 

These four disc-shaped engines produce a unique magnetic field that allows the hoverboard to self-propel. 

Hoverboards technology became popular after its representation in science fiction, particularly in the movie back to the future 2 in 1989. 

Some scientists suspect that electrodynamic suspension is used by hoverboards such as the Hendo hoverboards.

This technology is used in Hendo engines; it allows a moving magnet to induce currents in a nearby conductor to create a magnetic field. 

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Therefore, the key to hoverboards is moving magnets, judging from the use of physics theories such as electromagnetism and electrodynamic suspension. 

However, the most important parts of a hoverboard are the three sensors that communicate to ensure it works smoothly. 

Below are the parts of a hoverboard that contains sensors explained in detail; 

#1. The Gyroscopes

The gyroscopes in a hoverboard are one of the essential parts of the hoverboard because they help maintain the balance of the hoverboard while it moves. 

Every hoverboard has two gyroscopes that allow the rider to balance and control the hoverboard’s movement.

The rider’s motion is detected when the foot sensor is triggered, and this information is communicated to the logic board. 

Interestingly, the gyroscopes also sense the rider’s motion at the exact moment.

So they respond by relaying this information to the logic board, indicating that the rider is ready to move.

#2. The Tilt Sensors 

The tilt sensors in a hoverboard detect how much the rider tilts to ensure the hoverboard moves in the same direction.

The rider has to tilt to initiate movement to control the hoverboard’s movement. 

Therefore, the tilt sensors detect any tilting movement and communicate with the logic board and gyroscopes.

#3. The Speed Sensors 

The speed sensors in a hoverboard are meant to control and match the rider’s speed while the hoverboard is in use.

Speed sensors control the speed of hoverboards by measuring how fast the wheels are moving and relaying this information to the logic board and gyroscopes.

However, other components play critical roles apart from the sensors in a hoverboard.

Below are other components of a hoverboard and their unique functions; 

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Parts of a HoverboardFunctions
Logic BoardIt processes data from the sensors and relays it to the motors to keep the hoverboard balanced.
Pressure padsIt communicates the rider’s position as it changes to the logic board.
MicroprocessorsThey manage the amount of power that goes to the wheels.
Two wheels The logic board and sensors control the wheels to support the rider’s movements.
Power switchThe power switch is used to turn the hoverboard on and off.
MotorThe motor receives instructions from the logic board to power the wheels when the rider tilts.
Charging portThe charging port is the source for powering up the hoverboard’s batteries.
Battery The lithium-ion battery powers the hoverboard’s electrical charge.

Infrared sensors 
Infrared sensors measure the distance or presence of an object as the rider moves.

On Which Principle Is the Hoverboard Based? 

In the simplest terms, hoverboards are based on the self-balancing principle, which allows a two-wheeled battery-driven board with sensors to hover. 

However, a hoverboard’s actual architectural design or principle is known as magnetic field architecture. 

Magnetic field architecture (MFA) was developed by an architect named Greg Henderson; it is an electromagnetic technology that allows objects to hover. 

Interestingly, Greg Henderson used this Magnetic field architecture technology to invent one of the first working hoverboards, the Hendo hoverboard. 

This supports the fact that what makes a hoverboard a unique invention (especially when compared to a skateboard) is its ability to hover.

What Makes a Hoverboard Move?

A hoverboard moves when the tilt and speed sensors in the wheels communicate with the gyroscopes and the main logic board.

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The logic board of a hoverboard acts as the brain because it communicates with the sensors in a hoverboard to control speed and movement.

However, before the information reaches the main logic board, the sensors communicate with the gyroscopes, and information is relayed to the logic board. 

The batteries in a hoverboard also play a huge role in its movement; they are lithium-ion (rechargeable) and ensure the smooth operation of hoverboards.

Luckily, the steps needed to move while on a hoverboard involve a simple learning process.

Below are the steps to move on a hoverboard; 

  • Begin by turning on the hoverboard; the power button is usually near the charging point. Ensure that it is fully charged before use for maximum mileage. 
  • Secondly, try to balance the hoverboard by stepping on it with one foot, and when you gain compare, place your second foot. 
  • Next, try to move forward by pointing your toes forward; you can also go backward by leaning back on the hoverboard.
  • To turn clockwise, place your right toes down and keep your left foot resting horizontally to avoid losing balance.
  • However, to turn anti-clockwise, you’ll need to place your left toes down and rest your right foot horizontally on the hoverboard to stay balanced.
  • Lastly, you can also control your speed by how fast you lean toward your preferred direction, but it is crucial to keep a safe pace.

How Does a Hoverboard Balance Itself? 

A hoverboard can achieve its unique self-balancing feature because the pivot of a hoverboard’s frame is located in the center. 

All hoverboard components work together to achieve its ability to self-balance while a rider operates it. 

However, the motors, wheels, gyroscopes, tilt sensors, speed sensors, and logic board are the essential components of a hoverboard that determine its balance.

The motors are connected to both wheels of the hoverboard, which contain tilt and speed sensors.

These sensors contribute primarily to maintaining the hoverboard’s balance by detecting the rider’s movement and communicating with the gyroscopes. 

Instinctively, the gyroscopes in hoverboards relay the information of the rider’s movements to the logic board to maintain the hoverboard’s balance.

Frequently Asked Questions 

How Fast Can a Hoverboard Go? 

An average hoverboard can attain a maximum speed of six to seven miles per hour. However, other advanced hoverboards can reach a maximum speed of ten miles per hour.

What Happens If You Charge Your Hoverboard Too Long?

Charging your hoverboards for too long makes your batteries weaker and burnt out, especially if this is done often.

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