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Archimedes' weapon

  1. Sep 4, 2013 #1


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    Well it's physics and current so I guess this is the place for it.

    London especially the City area is changing fast by new construction; you would notice if you hadn't been for a few years, even one or two.

    In a new construction apparently the architects didn't think of the focussing mirror effect of a curved building. It set things on fire, melted a guy's car, and the BBC News film showed people frying eggs in the focus, temperatures of 50 deg. were measured (don't ask me).

    It's like the legend of Archimedes, I think it is considered a legend but was it based on something?

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 4, 2013 #2


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  4. Sep 4, 2013 #3


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    I've know the building they're talking about and at first I wondered why no one considered it would be a problem but then I wondered if anyone in England has ever worried about the sun being a problem...ever....
  5. Sep 4, 2013 #4


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    Sun in England? Nah, we have a historical evidence that it was locating it that was always the problem. After all, probably that's why Stonehenge was built - so that ancient Brits would know where to look for the Sun.
  6. Sep 4, 2013 #5

    It goes something like this: the earliest accounts of Archimedes defense of Syracuse contain reports of many amazing devices, but not the burning mirror. The burning mirror doesn't show up till an account written in the 12th century. That one is supposed to be based on an earlier one which is now lost.

    Anyway, we now know that if the Romans had tried to invade driving Jaguars, he could have melted them.
  7. Sep 4, 2013 #6
    Something I posted in random thoughts:

    You don't wanna piss Archie off...

  8. Sep 5, 2013 #7
    The trouble is, you have it wrong, Enigman. "Don't disturb my circles," is the last thing he said before a Roman soldier killed him.
  9. Sep 5, 2013 #8
    Just Idle fantasy, mon ami!

    I know but he defended his circles for two whole years- slaughtering a significant portion of the roman navy with his war machines. Not a guy you wanna piss off!!! Two years in front of the Romans and Carthage for a puny empire like Syracuse during a Punic war (pun intended)-well, can't be done without ol' Archie. HE ROCKS!!! The pic. was just Idle fantasy, mon ami!
    p.s. Archie also launched a whole friggin' ship singlehandedly!
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  10. Sep 5, 2013 #9
    In the end the Romans won and Archimedes got killed.

    If you want to celebrate a guy you shouldn't piss off, you should shift your focus to Newton. For example, when his nemesis Hooke died and Newton took over the Royal Society he "disappeared" the one and only portrait there was of Hooke. Because of that, no one really knows what Hooke looked like today. Then, later, when a well known counterfeiter showed up at the mint and started offering advise, Newton had him arrested, hanged, drawn and quartered. There's more. Newton died undefeated.
  11. Sep 5, 2013 #10
    Newton didn't launch a ship single handedly but Archie did. Newton can't compare to Archie's warmachines. [though its a good idea for my next pic...soon after I porcupine fish slap your avatar...Don't mind me I am high on caffeine and sugar.]
  12. Sep 5, 2013 #11


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    I heard they did consider this ("obviously" apparently), ran a load of simulations and decided there would be no problem. I think they said that the problem was due to "warping" or something after construction, that the simulations did not take into account.
  13. Sep 5, 2013 #12


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    It's out in full force today :cool:
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