Device to defy gravity. A hoax or the real deal?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Lars Larsen, Jul 29, 2002.

  1. Lars Larsen

    Lars Larsen Stunt Coordinator

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  2. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    The key point in the article is that the results claimed by Podkletnov have been not been shown to be reproducible by NASA or any other reputable scientific organization. Therefore, his claims are just that--claims.
     
  3. Danny R

    Danny R Supporting Actor

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    Superconductors and electromagnets? I've got a feeling that the original researcher had some flawed measurements and this is just a cold fusion style experiment. This report was published in 1992, and no one has been able to duplicate it since.
    A copy of the original paper describing the experiment can be found at:
    http://xxx.lanl.gov/abs/cond-mat/9701074
     
  4. AaronMg

    AaronMg Stunt Coordinator

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    I saw something like this on TV the otherday. They put small objects such as a grape, and even a small frog inbetween very powerful magnets and they seemed to float.
     
  5. Bill_D

    Bill_D Supporting Actor

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    A good swift kick in the ass will defy more gravity than this concoction ever will.

    Prove me wrong!
     
  6. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Hypothesis -> theory -> controlled experiment -> several more tests -> reproduce results that prove chance is not a factor -> write the paper for a peer-reviewed journal -> then make the announcement.

    Otherwise, it's all fodder for National Enquirer and The Star.

    I have a better chance of defying gravity when I ask somebody to "float me a twenty."
     
  7. Charles J P

    Charles J P Cinematographer

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    Of course, reducing the weight of a Jet by even 2% would be usefull, but how do you keep on of these magno-thermo-electro-gizmos under the plane while it flies?
     
  8. Shayne Lebrun

    Shayne Lebrun Screenwriter

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  9. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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    Oh yes, the "They laughed at Christopher Columbus. They laughed at the Wright brothers." argument.

    Just remember, they also laughed at Bozo the clown.

    When some independent researcher can reproduce this Bozo's claims, then and only then will he be taken seriously. Cold fusion, anyone? I sure don't see any 'Mr. Fusion' devices around.

    It would be nice if this could be reproduced, but until then it smells more fishy than my 'attack of the killer fish' thread.
     
  10. Shayne Lebrun

    Shayne Lebrun Screenwriter

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  11. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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  12. Julie K

    Julie K Screenwriter

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  13. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    Well, Boeing is TRYING to reproduce it. Let's wait and see what their conclusion is before we claim it's not true. I bet they know more about this than we do.

    /Mike
     
  14. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Shayne - Nobody here ever said that anti-gravity is impossible. The problem isn't with the idea...it's with this guy's claims of how he accomplished such a task.
    By the way...since we don't really understand what gravity is, what makes them think they've got something called anti-gravity? Creating a magnetic field that applies enough force to an object to cause it to lift is not anti-gravity any more than me reaching over and picking something up. Is my hand shielding the object from Earth's gravitational pull? Ppfffff! Ridiculous!
     
  15. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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  16. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    The poor example mentioning nuclear fission? I think Trinity proved a point there--not to mention Nagasaki and Hiroshima, and all those far too many atmospheric tests.

    I love how the "believers" are poo-hooing the skeptics here--when said skeptics would love nothing more than to see something like honest-to-goodness anti-gravity come along. It's the "honest" part we'd like to see, though.

    Breathtaking science is one thing, but non-verifiable voodoo claims aren't worth our time.

    Also, please don't insult members with whom you disagree. Thanks!
     
  17. Shayne Lebrun

    Shayne Lebrun Screenwriter

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    Ouch. Ok, insults that were not intended were recieved, and for that I apologize.
     
  18. Shayne Lebrun

    Shayne Lebrun Screenwriter

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    Oh, and by the way, here's a posting from Slashdot that explains a wee bit better than I did, what I was trying to get across. Comment can be found in it's original form here: http://science.slashdot.org/comments...46&cid=3971547
    ***
    Reading a lot of the posts people have made here so far is quite disheartening. Has everybody become so cynical that they reject any slightly outlandish claim without critical thought simply because 'everybody knows anti-gravity is impossible'. Right, everybody knew flying was impossible. Everybody knew going to the moon is impossible. We shouldn't just immediately dismiss the possibility - even if it is a one in a million chance, the potential pay off makes it worth while.
    That being said, there are several reasons why I'm willing to consider the possibility that Dr. Podkletnov was onto something.
    First, he never claimed it was an 'anti-gravity' device. When he and his associates wrote the paper, the editor of the journal they submitted it to leaked the paper to a British newspaper. He was the person who started throwing around the term anti-gravity. Of course, after this got out the paper was withdrawn under pressure from the scientific community at large and most of the co-authors withdrew their support from the paper. Dr. Podkletnov didn't, and was fired. What motivated the editor to leak the paper and use the phrase 'anti-gravity'? I've no clue, but this is certainly a major reason why so much of the scientific community was immediately skeptical.
    While some people have attempted to reproduce the experiment, you have to remember these are mostly people primarily with an interest in the gravity side. Dr. Podkletnov is a materials physicist, an expert in super-conductors. The super-conductor they were experimenting with was an experimental one. The researchers at NASA admit that despite having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the experiment they have yet to reproduce the experimental conditions (the major stumbling block is the super-conductor, they are having difficulty in reproducing it ... unsurprising since I believe none of them are experts in the production and manafacture of experimental superconductors).
    You can't think about this simply from a newtonian (as some posters shockingly have) or a general relativity stand-point. Superconductors aren't fully understood, but their behaviour comes from quantum mechanical properties, consequently you have to consider this using quantum gravity. And if you thought superconductors were mysterious... very little is known about quantum gravity. It is one of the very hot topics in theoretical physics these days.
    In a later paper, Dr. Podkletnov co-authored with an Italian theoretical physicist (and expert in quantum gravity). The Italian physicist has a fairly respectable C.V. (as did Podkletnov before he was fired for his research), including some time at the Fermi Institute and other high-profile physics research institutions, and offers a theoretical explanation of the effects Podkletnov claims to have observed. Of course, this is an observation, not a prediction, so take it with a grain of salt.
    A physicist at Berkley announced recently that he had developed a theory under which superconductors in certain situations could interact with gravitomagnetic fields in non-classical ways. Gravitomagnetism is related to gravity in the same way that magnetism is related electricity.
    At least three big names are interested enough to spend money exploring the possibility. NASA, Boeing and BAe.
    So I've got a few reasons to watch this research with interest and frankly hope. I won't be planning on owning a flying car a few years down the road. Healthy skepticism is a good thing, and extraordinary claims need extraordinary proof, but if you immediately dismiss an idea as outlandish and never give it a chance, you'll never get your extraordinary proof no matter how solid an idea it was in the first place.
    It's sad in a way ... modern physics may become a victim of its own success. For hundreds of years our understanding of science was furthered by people doing stuff, noticing something strange and trying to figure out why it happened. Of course, now we've got quantum mechanics which is just so goddamned good at what it does (i.e., modeling the subatomic universe) that anything which comes along and isn't explainable under the current theory is immediately dismissed after a half-assed attempt at reproducing. This isn't the way science is supposed to work! This is particularly sad since we already know that quantum mechanics is incomplete.
    Come on people! Where's your sense of wonder? This is potentially the greatest scientific discovery in seventy years! But if it's never given a chance to prove itself, it'll become the greatest scientific non-discovery.
     
  19. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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  20. Dana Fillhart

    Dana Fillhart Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, as in "Grasp-At-Straws" [​IMG]
     

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