Is this a Reactionless Drive?

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In summary, the conversation discusses the possibility of a linear version of the homopolar motor, where an electric current passing through a conducting magnet at a right angle to the magnetic field lines would create a force at right angles to both the flux and the current. This raises concerns about violating Newton's third law of motion, but it is noted that EM fields always conserve momentum. The discussion also references a thread that discusses the relevance of EM fields to this scenario.
  • #1
If an electric current is passed through a conducting magnet at a right angle to the magnetic field lines, the magnet should experience a force at right angles to both the flux and the current. This is a linear version of the homopolar motor. Since the magnetic field is not attached to the magnet, it would seem that there is no reaction to this force, thus violating Newton's third law of motion.

Mike
 
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  • #3
Thanks for the references, but they seem only to apply to EM fields. The case I described involves only a steady magnetic field and an electric current. The current obviously requires an electric field, but I am not inclined to believe that it is relevant in this case. I realize that it is unlikely that laws would be violated, but I do not see how the conservation of momentum is achieved in this situation. Even if the total momentum is conserved by considering the momentum of the magnetic field, if any, it would not seem to prevent the apparatus from being a reactionless drive for practical purposes, since I do not believe that any momentum of the magnetic field would be of concern for the purpose. The object of the reactionless drive is to move the apparatus through empty space.

Mike
 
  • #4
Electric and magnetic fields are EM fields.

Thread closed.
 
  • #5
, this phenomenon is known as the homopolar motor and it is not a reactionless drive. While it may seem like there is no reaction to the force being applied to the magnet, there is actually a reaction occurring in the form of a torque on the magnet. This torque is caused by the interaction between the magnetic field and the electric current, and it follows Newton's third law of motion. The homopolar motor may not have a traditional propellant, but it still follows the fundamental laws of physics. Additionally, it is important to note that this is not a perpetual motion machine and the magnet will eventually come to a stop due to the dissipation of energy.
 

1) What is a Reactionless Drive?

A Reactionless Drive is a hypothetical propulsion system that does not require any external reaction mass to generate thrust. This means that it can theoretically move without expelling any material or consuming any fuel.

2) Is a Reactionless Drive possible?

There is currently no scientific evidence to support the existence of a Reactionless Drive. While there have been claims of successful experiments, they have not been replicated or verified by the wider scientific community. According to our current understanding of physics, a Reactionless Drive violates the laws of conservation of momentum and energy, making it highly unlikely to exist.

3) How does a Reactionless Drive work?

The exact mechanism behind a Reactionless Drive is unknown, as it has not been proven to exist. However, some proposed concepts involve using electromagnetic fields or manipulating the fabric of spacetime to generate thrust without expelling any mass.

4) Could a Reactionless Drive have practical applications?

If a Reactionless Drive were to be proven possible, it could have significant implications for space travel. It could potentially allow for spacecraft to travel at incredibly high speeds without the need for large amounts of fuel, making long-distance space travel more feasible. However, until its existence is confirmed, any potential applications are purely speculative.

5) How can we test for the existence of a Reactionless Drive?

Scientists and researchers have attempted to test for the existence of a Reactionless Drive through various experiments, but so far, none have been successful. To truly prove the existence of a Reactionless Drive, it would need to be replicated and verified by multiple independent sources using rigorous scientific methods. Until then, its existence remains unproven.

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