The objective of this work is to develop a bearing using high temperature superconductors (HTSs) for use in an energy storage flywheel. The experimental apparatus includes a cylindrical rotor levitated with the Evershed design in which the majority of the levitation force is provided by a permanent magnet arrangement and the stabilization of the system is achieved by HTS elements. The design characteristics and dynamics of the bearing associated with the rotor part are presented. The instrumentation measures the out of balance force and magnetomechanical stiffness associated with the rotor. A study of the rotational losses was performed using free spin down experiments associated with magnetic field variation measurements. The results are consistent with the loss being caused by hysteresis in the superconductor due to magnet inhomogeneity. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.