Author Topic: Woodward's effect  (Read 288219 times)

Online HMXHMX

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #440 on: 02/09/2014 04:55 PM »
If his research depends on a material that takes years to obtain, then he's doing it wrong.

We want an experiment that would be reasonably easy to reproduce.

PS.  Well, unless of course the result he gets are spectacular enough to motivate others into overcoming the difficulties of getting the material.

You mean like U-235 or Pu?  Though I acknowledge your PS presumably covers that.  :)

Please understand we are doing science, not yet development, and with only two people, both part time.  Someone quoted Sagan's dictum about "extraordinary results require exceptional proof" so I'll add a line from Contact: "Small steps, Ellie, small steps."

Online MP99

Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #441 on: 02/09/2014 05:14 PM »
A lot of people find it difficult to completely trust a measurement that small (micronewtons) when such significant electromagnetic activity is present.  Woodward has been trying his best to eliminate potential sources of spurious thrust, but it's like LENR - you can't just show an effect that probably shouldn't have happened according to conventional theory; you have to show an effect that's large enough that it couldn't possibly have been due to conventional sources, because there could still be something you missed.

It helps to show specific agreement with your hypothesis that doesn't align with the conventional explanation.  Proper scaling of the effect with input parameters and quantitative agreement with theoretical predictions (both of which Woodward has apparently observed) would strengthen your claims, because they are unlikely to be the result of experimental error.  But when you're working this far out of the mainstream, people still tend to be suspicious.

ISTM any electric or magnetic side effects would be interacting with ambient / external fields.

Have the external electric / magnetic fields been varied to confirm how / whether the observed effect varies?

Cheers, Martin

Online HMXHMX

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #442 on: 02/09/2014 06:05 PM »
I'm reposting this 2012 JPC paper to help answer questions related to exclusion of mundane effects.  It probably won't cover everyone's questions but it may help.

Offline Elmar Moelzer

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #443 on: 02/09/2014 06:34 PM »
An important thing to note is the ceramic used in Mach-effect thruster test articles for years, PZT (lead zirconate titanate) could soon be replaced by another material, PMN (lead magnesium niobate). Yet it is extremely difficult to lay hands on any sample of this new and expensive high-k material. It's been more than one year that Pr. Woodward hunts for a small amount of raw PMN powder, contacting labs worldwide. Those act as if they were OK to sell finished products, but don't want to sell their raw material.

And after you get this, you have to carefully press and sinter this powder, trying your best to not contaminating it, building thin disks stacks for MET test articles. Once it's done, the electric circuit could be tuned to account for the different features exhibited by this material (it's more difficult to tune the circuit for PMN because it is electrostrictive, whereas PZT is piezoelectric) and finally you can increase the power and operating frequency. We'll then see if the thrust signatures are also increased or not.
This part is really curious to me. So from what I understand it is both difficult to obtain raw materials and to make the test articles. So why not ask the labs that make the PMN to make the test article to Woodwards spec? Would the cost be too high? What sort of sums are we talking about here?

Offline gospacex

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #444 on: 02/09/2014 07:28 PM »
It's the same elsewhere.  E.G. extension of healthy life aka not-immortality..  It upsets people's conveniently settled moral foundations and outlook (e.g. "death trance", "illusion of control").  The mind bendingly vast possibilities beyond the little territory of beaten paths that homo sapiens c.2000 A.D. has fenced itself into, are just too much for most people -- they not only don't ponder them, they dismiss them outright.

That's awfully insulting to anyone who is skeptical.  You're claiming anyone who doesn't have your fringe beliefs holds those opinions because they are small minded and it upsets them to consider the possibility.

Have you considered the alternative -- that the skeptics have good reason to be skeptical and that it's the fringe theorists who are mistaken?

There are good reasons to be skeptical.

One, sometimes people are self-deceived pursuing a scientific goal. They can be honestly thinking they are onto something, and they just need a bit better equipment to nail it down, while in reality it is just not there.

And second, sadly, history provides a long list of scammers of all sorts claiming that they invented an amazing machine which will provide infinite energy, or turn lead to gold, etc.
For each real unexpected discovery (such as, say, superconductivity) there were dozens of bogus "amazing discoveries".

Extraordinary claims do require extraordinary evidence.
« Last Edit: 02/09/2014 07:29 PM by gospacex »

Offline cuddihy

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #445 on: 02/09/2014 07:32 PM »
Given the way the experiment is set up, external effects have to be pretty minimal. As 93143 said, however, the scale of the thrusts is so small in comparison to the amount of power that it's tough to eliminate other effects.

Thomas Mahood who had a big hand in the early experiments and articles himself said that it is worrying that as the experiment got more refined, the signal got smaller, not larger. But at the same time, it could just be that it's more complex what's going on in the device than what one would naively calculate from the basics of the impulse term equation.

Offline 93143

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #446 on: 02/09/2014 08:42 PM »
A high degree of scepticism for a breakthrough is to be expected, but I would have thought scepticism has to be based on fact and logic to be valid and helpful.

This.

First off, obviously there's nothing wrong with caution, especially by those involved.  If the Pons and Fleischmann mess taught us nothing else, it should have taught us that.

But there is something wrong with publicly denigrating something you aren't involved in without first learning enough about it to have an informed opinion.  That's not caution, and it's not proper skepticism in the philosophical sense; it's unjustified dismissiveness, which is at best unhelpful and can be counterproductive.

Also, there appears to be an endemic... pessimism, one might say, that reaches even into the ranks of people who really do know stuff.  Look at the wormhole example.  Why should you have to explicitly disavow the plausibility of the idea you're presenting in order to get it published?  There's certainly such a thing as the "giggle factor", but it's not a valid scientific criterion.

...

On second thought, I am not adding back the parts of my previous post that I took out last night.  At this point I don't think it would help much.

Proper scaling of the effect with input parameters and quantitative agreement with theoretical predictions (both of which Woodward has apparently observed) would strengthen your claims, because they are unlikely to be the result of experimental error. 

My understanding is that the experiments observe an effect much smaller (an order of magnitude?) than predicted. Have I got that wrong?

The observed effect used to be multiple orders of magnitude smaller than predicted, and it got smaller as the experiment was refined.  But that thrust prediction was derived rather simplistically and wasn't really useful in a quantitative sense.

Recently, a more sophisticated theoretical prediction of the thrust was derived, and I believe the latest experiments consistently match it within an order of magnitude or so.  I was pretty sure I had run across a reference to an experiment that got 2-3 μN when the prediction was 3.2 μN, but I've had trouble finding it again...

The new prediction still makes a couple of somewhat unrealistic simplifying assumptions; Woodward figures that due to the specifics of the case they should more or less cancel each other out...
« Last Edit: 02/10/2014 08:51 AM by 93143 »

Offline cuddihy

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #447 on: 02/10/2014 11:45 AM »
It's in the paper HMXHMX reposted above.

Offline flux_capacitor

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #448 on: 02/10/2014 02:36 PM »
This part is really curious to me. So from what I understand it is both difficult to obtain raw materials and to make the test articles. So why not ask the labs that make the PMN to make the test article to Woodwards spec? Would the cost be too high? What sort of sums are we talking about here?

Because the firms involved here build actuators only, and for themselves only. Completely different business, nevertheless suspicious of everyone else, because they think anyone interested in PMN could be a competitor.

Woodward usually needs 2mm thick disks to build his stacks. The only quote he managed to get by this time last year was about 10 times the price that it ought to be for a 10th of the powder volume he'd needů so the goal is trying to get more powder to press oneself later.

Offline Elmar Moelzer

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #449 on: 02/10/2014 02:47 PM »
This part is really curious to me. So from what I understand it is both difficult to obtain raw materials and to make the test articles. So why not ask the labs that make the PMN to make the test article to Woodwards spec? Would the cost be too high? What sort of sums are we talking about here?

Because the firms involved here build actuators only, and for themselves only. Completely different business, nevertheless suspicious of everyone else, because they think anyone interested in PMN could be a competitor.

Woodward usually needs 2mm thick disks to build his stacks. The only quote he managed to get by this time last year was about 10 times the price that it ought to be for a 10th of the powder volume he'd needů so the goal is trying to get more powder to press oneself later.
Sigh...

Offline 93143

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #450 on: 02/10/2014 08:59 PM »
I was pretty sure I had run across a reference to an experiment that got 2-3 μN when the prediction was 3.2 μN, but I've had trouble finding it again...
It's in the paper HMXHMX reposted above.

So it is.  Excellent.

Offline cuddihy

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #451 on: 02/18/2014 02:12 PM »
Brian Wang's site is relaying discovery of a high dielectric, high (77deg C) operating temperature superconductor.

http://nextbigfuture.com/2014/02/high-dielectric-constant-enables.html

So the next question for Mach Effect aficionados is, what are piezoelectric and electrostrictive constants for the material?

*corrected temp to Celcius
« Last Edit: 02/19/2014 03:58 AM by cuddihy »

Offline mheney

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #452 on: 02/18/2014 06:15 PM »
Actually, it says 77C / 170F.  Which is even more impressive ...

Offline Elmar Moelzer

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #453 on: 02/18/2014 06:21 PM »
The problem with Joes superconductors right now is volume fraction. He should put more effort into that.

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #454 on: 02/18/2014 06:58 PM »
The mind bendingly vast possibilities beyond the little territory of beaten paths that homo sapiens c.2000 A.D. has fenced itself into, are just too much for most people -- they not only don't ponder them, they dismiss them outright.

I cannot handle this language.  If I have a two pack a day cigarette habit, then it can be credibly argued that I am "fencing" myself into a shortened lifespan.

Every last person who has lived, with a few "miraculous" exceptions, has died regardless of the healthiness of their lifestyle.  Anecdotally, almost everybody would prefer to live long and prosper.

Quote from: Cinder
Does this sound off-topic because outside of the scope of this discussion?  It's not: this is the reason there has not been the - by all accounts - small amount of $$$ it would take to once and for all rule out the effect, or prove its practical viability.

I get a fair amount of grief for voicing my hypothesis that in spite of the financial, technical and natural resources available, we have not yet established a lunar or martian colony using chemical rocketry, probably by governmental intention.  There are sound political reasons for discouraging the establishment of an off world government, which would be the only result of a successful colonization effort.

In the case of novel propulsive technologies, I would countenance some validity to your supposition that governmental financial support has not been forthcoming for these technologies, thereby hampering their development.  The researchers do not appear to be courting that money, however.  In this way, they are "fencing" themselves in.

Quote
Even the more modest projections of ME thrusters would open up the solar system...

I think the researchers in this area would do better to focus on pragmatic work such as this.  The talk of 'stargates', when the device cannot float above a table is worse than premature; it is counter productive.  No wonder there is so much skepticism.

Not only that, but observing from a distance, there is certainly no way to know how rigorous a claimant is about designing and constructing a test environment

It cannot be overlooked that some of the experimental setups look "for all the world like the test articles are made in some eccentric home experimenter's garage".  Goddard's first rocket experiments had this look, but they worked, and the scaling was "merely" a matter of engineering.

As to the materials, it seems that lead magnesium niobate is available for sale $321/25g, ships on 2/18/14:

http://www.sigmaaldrich.com/catalog/product/aldrich/672874?lang=en&region=US

I'm not in charge of pricing, BTW.  I'm pretty sure these people set the price for their product according to their own business model.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline D_Dom

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #455 on: 02/19/2014 02:20 PM »
Nearly seven times the price of gold, wonder how much he needs.
 It remains to be seen how far terrestrial governments  will go in "discouraging the establishment of an off world government". I would guess some will stop at nothing. I am hoping that government "of, by and for the people" will prove to be more supportive of the colonization effort. All we really need to do is convince enough of the people.
Space is not merely a matter of life or death, it is considerably more important than that!

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #456 on: 02/19/2014 06:43 PM »
Nearly seven times the price of gold, wonder how much he needs.
 It remains to be seen how far terrestrial governments  will go in "discouraging the establishment of an off world government". I would guess some will stop at nothing. I am hoping that government "of, by and for the people" will prove to be more supportive of the colonization effort. All we really need to do is convince enough of the people.

Well, take a googol on the term "lead magnesium niobate for sale", and there are a number of providers.  If you think you can make the stuff cheaper, well, you know one person who'd be interested.  Everybody's gonna complain about your price tho.  Part of the capitalistic way, don'tcha know.

As to the convincing of the governed:  I share your desire generally, but the governed don't seem to.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Offline grondilu

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #457 on: 02/20/2014 04:09 AM »
Considerations on space colonization and alleged reluctance from governments to support it, are off-topic here, nevertheless I'd risk stating that the tough part in colonizing a celestial body is not much about getting there, but rather sustaining life there with non-prohibitive costs.
« Last Edit: 02/20/2014 10:43 AM by grondilu »
Space is pretty much literally an astronomically-high hanging fruit.

Offline JohnFornaro

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #458 on: 02/20/2014 12:16 PM »
Considerations on space colonization and alleged reluctance from governments to support it, are off-topic here, nevertheless I'd risk stating that the tough part in colonizing a celestial body is not much about getting there, but rather sustaining life there with non-prohibitive costs.

Pretty funny about that there "alleged" governmental reluctance.   But in general, I agree.  Perhaps there could be some discussion on the "allegedly", per the googol, widespread availability of PMN, and the "allegedly" free market forces which determine it's price.
Sometimes I just flat out don't get it.

Online Stormbringer

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Re: Woodward's effect
« Reply #459 on: 02/28/2014 07:46 PM »
i had an epiphany of good ol' fringey goodness thanks to those videos about Dr. Woodward's wormholes.

i hesitated to post it because it may not comport with this forum's editorial policy. but i'll give it a shot. lately there have been several articles on synthetic or emergent monopole like phenomenon in condensed matter and solid state physics.

in those articles a string or tube like topology can be treated for all intents and purposed as a magnetic monopole when the ends of the tube or filament has an isolated magnetic charge.

additionally i was thinking of the filament or tube like topologies involved in nuclear strong force binding and weak force mediated decay.

and i was also discussing Woodward, Mach and wormholes elsewhere and quantum back pressure came up in my mind in the normal senses of constraining (chronology preservation) traversible wormholes and then manipulating the size and position of worm hole apertures.  i was turning all these topics over in my mind and it just occurred to me that besides moving a wormhole and destroying a worm hole it could create a wormhole with the same properties as those emergent filament or tube monopoles. you should be able to create a wormhole with a discrete magnetic chage at the mouths via back pressure. and monopoles of various proposed species or classes have all sorts of science fiction-esque uses which you guys know but i probably shouldn't go into here.

When antigravity is outlawed only outlaws will have antigravity.