Bismuth is too heavy to be supported by its own
diamagnetism using permanent magnets. Graphite
has much stronger diamagnetism and much less
weight and it still only levitates 1-2mm above a
set of magnets. It's much easier to levitate a
small magnet between two pieces of bismuth with a
2nd magnet nearby.See, for example, the discussion
also a detailed description of diamagnetic
They even levitated slices of pizza! (Though
they don't show pictures.) Unfortunately, they
needed a 20 Tesla magnet.
I did find an article on the web though which
might be interesting for you, especially since it
addresses your envisioned "application". See
are two things that are important for you to
realize, one is that diamagnetic forces are small.
The other is that a homogenous field will not
generate a force on a spherical particle of
bismuth or another diamagnetic material.
Rod-shaped objects will align in a homogenous
field, and an in-homogenous field will generate a
force. Any "formula", which I think you are
looking for, will be in a mathematical form that
is very complex, since it will at the very least
have to involve the vector field of the magnetic
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