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A new structural configuration of a permanent-electro magnet suspension (PEMS) magnet is presented to reduce the suspension power loss of middle-low-speed maglev trains. With the non-linear magnetic force expression of a PEMS magnet, some measures to increase the lift force remarkably is put forward, including selecting suitable thickness and pole face area of permanent magnet (PM), determining the ampere-turn of electromagnet, and working with the maximum magnetic energy product of a PM. The structural optimal design of PEMS magnet is converted to one type of constrained non-linear programming problem. The carrying capability and suspension power loss of designed PEMS magnet with optimised parameters are compared with a conventional electromagnetic system. Finally, numerical simulation and experimental results show that the PEMS magnet has better carrying capability and lower suspension power loss.