Viewzone Magazine

I added a new site, Viewzone Magazine.

There is a difficulty in the field of science. On the one hand, there are 6.4 billion individuals on this planet, many of them have very active imaginations, and many of those have access to the Internet. You can’t believe everything you read, a very large percentage is bogus.

On the other hand, if you stick to peer reviewed journals like Nature, you’ll only rarely find anything printed which contradicts established theories and thus very little progress is possible.

Viewzone has a lot of questionable material, but they also have a lot of leading edge, you won’t hear about it elsewhere, material. As fringe science sites go I think this site has quite a lot of good information in the mix. But you have to exercise some critical thinking and responsibility when you read this site.

Sidebar Additions

I’ve added a several sites to the side bar. Space Flight Now which deals with space flight, space exploration, cosmology and astrophysics. The Space Review seems to be focused on manned space flight. Exploratorium offers down to Earth experiments and demonstrations educators and science hobbyists can use to teach and learn science.

These links will live on in the sidebar even after this post has scrolled.

Problem with Singularities

Black Holes are an interesting topic, I’m not convince they exist in their originally conceived form, that of a singularity. Problem with quantum physics aside, there is also the problem of angular momentum and relativity.

Everything in the universe possesses angular momentum, whether it be a collapsing star or space dust or whatever, it spins. To conserve angular momentum, as something collapses it spins faster, just as a ballerina spins faster when she brings her arms near her body.

Material collapsing will approach relativistic velocities at some point. It can not go faster than the speed of light but it can get closer and closer, and as it does, it will acquire more and more relativistic mass. The fact that it can’t spin infinitely fast means it can never collapse entirely into a singularity.

Even if the material only approaches the speed of light, we should see the effect of relativistic mass on the gravity signature of black holes and the effect that it has on the surrounding space. We don’t seem to see this so something must prevent the collapse from continuing past some stable point, otherwise we’d keep seeing the relativistic mass continue to rise towards infinity swallowing the entire universe. We are still here to contemplate this so I think it’s safe to assume this has not yet happened, in at least 13.7 billion years, this has not yet happened in our universe.

Magnetic Anomaly

On a mailing list that I am on someone described an experiment in which they made a transformer where the primary consisted of a normal winding of insulted copper wire. The transformer was one designed to be easily disassembled for demonstrations.

They made a secondary of 15 turns of 1mm PVC insulated wire and measured the output, both open, and under load. Then they made an identical secondary except that it was encased in a ring of steel pipe with the ends not quite touching.

When the primary was powered up, the output voltage induced in the 15 turn secondary was the same whether it was unshielded or inside the ring of steel pipe. Open circuit voltage or voltage measured with a lamp load were not affected by the presence of the pipe.

The experimenters question was, if voltage induced in the secondary involves the coil cutting the flux as they referred to it, why was voltage not reduced when shielded inside the steel pipe. And a secondary question was, in a transformer design where flux is designed to stay in the core, how does it cut the coil and induce a voltage. Any flux which does escape the core is considered “leakage flux” and generally transformer cores are designed to minimize that. I’d add to that, a toroidal transformer where there is essentially no leakage flux is as efficient as you can get.

The whole cutting lines of flux concept is one I’ve never been comfortable with, I think it derives from the old iron filings experiments where they filings lined themselves up in lines that people assumed to be magnetic lines of force, but I think that assumption was incorrect; without the filings there is just a magnetic field gradient, not “lines”, the lines form because when one filing aligns with the gradient, it essentially short-circuits that magnetic field gradient over it’s length and so the magnetic gradient potential is higher near it’s ends attracting other filings, they in turn do the same thing and so the end result is filings self-organizing themselves into lines.

The questions are of interest. Working in various fields involving transmission of audio signals in shielded coaxial cables, I’ve always noted the lack of 100% effective shielding and attributed that to the fact that the shielding materials had electrical resistance and where therefore unable to completely exclude magnetic fields. I wouldn’t have been surprised that some field is induced in the secondary, after all the shield was incomplete, there was a gap, and steel is not a particularly good conductor and therefore shield.

That no difference in output was observed, that is surprising, and then the whole question about transformer theory and flux being contained within the core is also interesting. Please feel free to use comments or e-mail to add your thoughts on this subject.

Crackpots and Geniuses

Crackpots and Geniuses seem to be equally excluded from mainstream science. It presents a dilemma when it comes to including numerous alternative or fringe science sites and concepts. Mainstream science has become frustratingly dogmatic. The more we insist we know all there is to know, the more difficult it becomes to discover. We should not confuse science with truth. A theory, even if it makes successful predictions, is still a theory. The success of those predictions doesn’t prove the theory is truth, it only proves that it makes accurate predictions in a set of circumstances.

Newtons law of gravity made wonderfully accurate predictions under most ordinary circumstances. Nature being what it is provided us with one example where Newtons law of gravity failed, in the motion of Mercury. For the motion of Mercury to be fully explained, relativity had to be invoked. General relativity makes accurate predictions under a broader set of circumstances than does Newtonian physics. But it fails under some circumstances also. It fails to properly describe the rate of deceleration of the Pioneer spacecraft. This has become known as the Pioneer Anomaly. The anomaly hasn’t been limited to Pioneer, other spacecraft near the edge of the solar system have demonstrated similar anomalous deceleration.

It is clear to me that we don’t understand the force of gravity to the degree we think we do. Gravity waves have been predicted by physicists for decades. Numerous gravity wave experiments, Australia has ACIGA, The German-British project GEO 600, NASA LISA spaced base interferometry experiment, LIGO at CalTech, the Japanese projects LIGM and Tama 300, the French/Italian project VIRGO and the Italian project AURIGA, have all failed to definitively detect gravity waves.

A weak but existent connection between gravity and electromagnetism was predicted by Einstein. An effect still very weak but orders of magnitude stronger than predicted. Such a force has been measured around rotating superconductive rings. Gravitational forces emanating from rotating superconductors have been measured at various laboratories. They have fallen far short of those claimed by Eugene Podkletnov, a Russian scientists, who claims to have seen gravity reduction up to 2%, but still several orders of magnitude greater than predicted by Einstein.

These things and more convince me that there is still much to learn, and so I have included some sites which I am confident contain crackpot material because I believe within them from time to time also will be found some genuine science that will not make it’s way into mainstream journals anytime soon.


The ingenuity of some people is beyond belief. Take a look at this article in the New Scientist.

I’ve heard of people spying on computer data by detecting the radio frequency emissions from the monitor and it is not real difficult for me to understand how that might be done.

But this one never occurred to me. It is possible to see what’s on someone’s computer monitor by just the light reflected off the wall or diffused through curtains, and this can even be done from a great distance via a telescope.

That this was possible never occurred to me before. The article did not elaborate on HOW this was done. Being familiar with how CRT displays work, after reading that was possible, it was immediately obvious to me how it was possible.

On a CRT display, an electron beam is swept from left to right and top to bottom. Thus the light hitting the wall, which appears to be a diffuse flickering glow, is actually rapidly modulating as the electron beams trace out the image on the monitors phosphors.

with a sensitive light detector at the focal point of a telescope, one need only determine the horizontal and vertical sweep rates, and this can be determined by the regular dimming during the fly back and vertical retrace periods, in order to reconstruct the image. The electron beam is swept from left to right, each successive line lower than the one before. When it gets all the way to the right, it rapidly “flys back”, and during this time it is turned off so it doesn’t make lines backwards across the display. That off period should be recognizable and usable as a sync period. A similar thing happens when the beam reaches the bottom of the screen and has to return to the top.

Essentially what you have is a three channel optical link. You need filters to separate red/green/blue, but for each channel the data is basically a serial optical link.

Gravitoelectric Force

After an UFO encounter which I had 38 years ago, I’ve been convinced there is some coupling between the electromagnetic force, space, time, and gravity.

There has been much anecdotal evidence. Magnetic effects and materials seem to be strongly associated with UFOs. Spend a half hour with Google and you’ll find examples of engines stalling, instruments reading strangely, even power grid outages associated with UFOs. Arts Parts, layers of bismuth, a strongly diamagnetic metal, and an aluminum-magnesium alloy (structurally strong). The workings of the vehicle that I saw, a glass ring filled with mercury with two coils of copper wire wound around it. As with bismuth, mercury is strongly diamagnetic.

Einsteins’ general theory of relativity did suggest a relationship between gravity and electromagnetism but it was an extremely weak relationship. One that should not be noticeable.

A Russian scientist working in Tampere Finland, Dr. Podkeltnov, discovered that a rotating superconductor resulted in a reduction in gravity directly above it. The amount of reduction was small but still significant. This happened in 1996, and I’ve read that a number of aerospace companies were investigating the effect but I have not heard any formal announcements from any of them.

Boyd Bushman of Lockheed Martin has mentioned on video that a relationship between a magnetic plane created by opposing magnets and gravity exists.

See this article in Science Daily. It is describing a non-Newtonian gravity field being setup by rotating superconductors that is much larger than predicted by general relativity.

I have frightening dreams surrounding the development of this technology. In my dreams, the government gets it and uses it to terrorize civilians into being good slaves.

For this reason I want to understand the principal behind this technology and find a way to make it available to the public.

I would very much like to hear from people actively researching this area.

Absolute Zero and Heisenberg Uncertainty Principal

I was reading a physics forum archive in which someone asked the question of whether absolute zero was obtainable because there would be no molecular motion and thus, they felt, by extension the Heisenberg uncertainty principal would break down.

I don’t see any reason the Heisenberg uncertainty principal should break down. Since the velocity is known exactly (zero), the position of the atom wouldn’t be known. Bose Einstein condensate, a state of matter when brought close to absolute zero and the individual atoms act as if they were one, is evidence of exactly that happening.

The Krone Experiment

Normally I would be disinclined to mention a movie on a science and technology blog, however, The Krone Experiment plays on a particular fear that I have.

Scientists are attempting to create black holes in an accelerator. The idea being that if you can concentrate enough energy in a small enough space, a black hole will come into existence fleetingly.

That it will be a fleeting existence for the black hole is posited on a posited phenomena of Hawkings radiation. The idea is that virtual particles that come into existence right at the event horizon will become real because one will be sucked in and the other will escape and their inability to re-unite makes them real.

Now, because a particle escaped, conservation of mass it is theorized will require that the other particle going into the black hole will some how cause it to decrease in mass rather than increasing in mass.

This is placing way too much faith in a theory for my comfort. Usually, when you add mass to mass, it makes more mass not less. When you consider that the particle external to the event horizon became real because it couldn’t re-united with it’s virtual particle mate within the time allowed by the Heisenberg uncertainty principal, why wouldn’t the particle inside the black hole also become real and add to the mass?

If the conservation of mass applies in all circumstances then how is it the universe exists? It seems to me that gambling the fate of the entire planet and everyone on it on an untested theory is more than foolhardy.

If we don’t all blink out of existence first, it might be worth seeing.

China’s EAST Fusion Reactor

There is a lot of confusion regarding China’s new EAST fusion reactor. I can clarify things a bit.

All Tokamak fusion reactors build to date, including EAST, have been test reactors. They are not reactors intended for commercial power production. They are intended to study things like plasma characteristics, scaling laws, and to solve various problems inherent in creating and sustaining a controlled fusion reaction here on earth.

With the exception of EAST, all tokamak fusion test reactors built thus far have had copper coils for the magnets that confine the plasma. Because very high currents are required to produce the necessary magnetic fields, huge currents must flow through these coils which causes them to overheat in sixty seconds or less. Thus existing reactors have not been able to do research on things that involve long term operation. In addition, existing reactors dissipate a huge amount of heat from those coils and require a huge amount of refrigeration to remove it.

A commercial reactor will need to operate for months not seconds. To be practical, a commercial reactor will need to rely on superconductive coils for magnetic confinement. This will eliminate the energy lost to copper resistance and the heat associated with it, allowing long operations. Building coils from superconductors is a non-trivial engineering problem because most superconductors are brittle ceramic materials.

EAST is the worlds very first fusion reactor to use superconductive magnets for plasma confinement. This will allow it to do longer experiments maintaining a plasma for more than 15 minutes. ITER was to serve this purpose but the Chinese energy crises is too severe to wait twelve years to start answering questions pertaining to continuous operation. China assembled their own superconductive Tokamak reactor in seven months. Between engineering and fabrication of components the project has been in the works for about eight years. They are also participating in ITER but I believe they will be feeding fusion generated power to their power grid before ITER sees first plasma.

The western media has gotten the idea that China has already succeeded in creating 100 million degree plasmas of deuterium and tritium and controlled fusion. This is a misunderstanding which I suspect relates to the fact that the Chinese language does not have verb tense. The verb is the same for past, present, and future. China releases a news press release that states that the reactor had seen first plasma and that it will fuse deuterium and tritium in a 100 million degree plasma to produce energy and given the lack of tense in the Chinese verb took that to mean already had rather than will.

EAST saw first plasma in September, only seven months after construction began. This is a major milestone because it proved that the superconductive coils worked as designed, and since this had never been done before, that’s a major advancement towards commercial fusion power generation. First plasma and subsequent tests used ordinary hydrogen and not deuterium or tritium.

EAST has not produced any fusion power yet because it has not been fueled with the deuterium – tritium mixture that will fuse at the temperatures obtainable in a Tokamak reactor design. However, the accomplishments thus far is nothing to be sneezed at. The Chinese, in constructing EAST, tackled one of the largest engineering problems surrounding the construction of a commercial power generating fusion reactor by solving the superconducting magnetic confinement problem.

EAST is not a commercial power generation reactor. Commercial reactors will have a lithium blanket which will both capture neutrons preventing their escape and breed tritium from lithium. EAST will not have a lithium blanket. Commercial reactors will be have a capacity of around 600 MW but EAST will only operate at 15-20 MW power levels. Commercial reactors will be constructed to remove the heat (and use it to make electricity) continuously. EAST will only have sufficient cooling for about 15-20minutes of operation.

I do not know if EAST will be capable of scientific break even or not. Plasma confinement efficiency improves with the size of the device. My understanding is that it improves with the cube of the size, so a machine twice as large can confine plasma 8x better. EAST may not be large enough to achieve break even, but improvements in confinement technology have been reducing the minimum size of a machine capable of producing break-even.

Whether or not it achieves break-even it will answer many of the questions necessary towards engineering a commercial power reactor and it deserves to be recognized for the tremendous accomplishment that it represents.