June 1, 1999
Long Island middle school students enthusiastically test a handmade, model maglev vehicle with Carol Otto, a museum program educator from the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory. They were among almost 300 students from 15 school districts in Nassau and Suffolk Counties who entered the Ninth Annual Middle School Magnetic Levitation Contest held at Brookhaven Lab. Maglev, the suspension, guidance and propulsion of vehicles by magnetic forces, was invented and patented in 1968 by Brookhaven Lab scientists Gordon Danby and James Powell.
In addition to Brookhaven Lab, the contest was sponsored by Hofstra University, Center for Technology Education; the Long Island Technology Administration Association; the Nassau Technology Association; and the Suffolk Technology Education Association. The students designed and built model vehicles according to certain size and weight specifications, with the goal being to design the fastest vehicle with the fewest magnets. Fifteen winners received trophies.