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Originally posted by Mayson
reply to post by ExCloud
If you take a magnet and put it on the ground and then put another magnet on top of it so that the opposite poles are close, then the top magnet(provided it is light enough) would push away from the bottom magnet; it would generate "lift." However, join them together and it becomes a whole other "system" than the one in the first example. You wouldn't see any lift.
For example, take your hand and put your other hand on top of it. Now, push real hard with one hand. The net force on each hand taken separately is non-zero. Your hands likely accelerated away in some direction. Did your body follow along with them? Can you push on your own body and generate lift?
I'm sure that this is a bad example, but it's all a Newton's second law type of problem.
Spinning the magnets wouldn't really have any effect at all.
You can sort of simulate gravity by spinning an object. For example, imagine a record or some other object that spins. Now, if you put a marble on it then the lack of centripedal force will cause the marble to move to the edge of the spinning object. If there is a ridge of some sort along the edge, then the marble will "stick" to the edge of the spinning object. It will behave as if there were a force pushing it up against the ridge. In space, in the absence of appreciable gravity, you can use this effect to simulate gravity.