Is this crack pottery?

  • Thread starter Anzas
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  • #26
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ZapperZ said:
You seem to have missed a considerable number of the counter point I was making.

In this particular case, you tried to raise his stature by citing the fact that he has patents. I did NOT argue against the validity of the patent. I argued against using the POINT that JUST because someone has a patent, it doesn't AUTOMATICALLY means such a thing must be correct, or that person is anywhere sane. You are making it sound as if having a patent is a SUFFICIENT CRITERIA to be taken seriously. I provided counted examples. It has nothing to do laser physics, thank you.
You seem to have also misunderstood me on several points. I cited Puthoff's patents to show that he has done work that is respected by the physics community; and like I said before, Puthoff has never made any disingenuous claims about ZP energy extraction. For these reasons, he cannot be fairly labeled a crackpot. And I never implied that having a patent means that the idea is correct. There are many cases where patents are given to devices which don't work i.e. the Dean Drive.

ZapperZ said:
Er... there's no "theoretical limit" to drawing energy from nuclear fission? Since when?

Also, can you please find in this thread where I said this is "crackpottery"? My intrusion in this thread was when there was a claim that Puthoff is considered generally to be a "respected" physicist, as if what he represents is generally accepted. He isn't! The opinion expressed by Bob Park isn't a minority opinion!
You misunderstood me. I said "No physicist really knows how much energy we can actuall draw from the ZPE, but the point is, as long as there is no theoretical limit - and there isn't - then its an idea worth pursuing, just like drawing energy from nuclear fission was." meaning that there is no theoretical limit to how much energy can be extracted from the VACUUM FLUCTUATIONS, not nuclear fission. The analogy I was making was that nuclear fission was once viewed as a laboratory curiosity for which there was a definite limit as to how much energy could be extracted from fissioning the atom. It was thought to be impossible to break-even. Szilard proved this false of course. Likewise, I am saying that many people such as yourself are making the assumption that there is a very low limit to ZP energy extraction and I am saying that there is no theoretical basis for such an assumption. I didn't say one could extract an infinite amount of energy from nuclear fission.

And I was responding to Doc Al's ignorant, knee-jerk characterization of Puthoff and his work as crackpottery. And I explicitly said in previous posts that Puthoff's views are controversial and not of the majority. This doesn't make him a crackpot however!! But the fact that you are defending what he said makes me think that maybe you agree with him! And that's unreasonable.


ZapperZ said:
And this accounts for non-opacity of free space for the whole range of EM spectrum that we know of?
Yes. This thermodynamical argument holds for all frequencies of radiation. It's actually a very basic concept, one that many physicists who I've encountered tend to initially overlook.

ZapperZ said:
And it is rather anthropic, don't you think, that space just happens to have the correct radiation field for us to be in "thermal equilibrium" to it.
I don't know why you think it's anthropic. It's actually a basic idea in thermodynamics. When accelerating charges radiate electromagnetic waves in a cavity, the EM waves isotropically distribute themselves like a gas does and, given some time, the electromagnetic radiation bath will reach a state of thermal equilibrium with the charged particles in the cavity, where the power radiated will be equal to the power absorbed. It's a dynamical thermodynamic system that evolves towards a sort of "ground state" for the energy of the particles. In fact, this is exactly what Boyer, Puthoff, and Cole have shown for the case of the hydrogen atom immersed in ZP radiation:

T. H. Boyer, "Random Electrodynamics: The theory of classical electromagnetic zero-point radiation," Phys. Rev. D 11(4), 790-808 (1975).

H. E. Puthoff, "Ground State of Hydrogen as a Zero-Point-Fluctuation-Determined State," Phys. Rev. D 35, pp. 3266-3269 (1987).

Quantum Mechanical Ground State of Hydrogen Obtained from Classical Electrodynamics
D. C. Cole and Y. Zou, Physics Letters A, Vol. 317, No. 1-2, pp. 14-20 (13 October 2003).http://www.bu.edu/simulation/publications/dcole/PDF/DCColePhysicsLettA.pdf


ZapperZ said:
There are MANY theories that are plausible physically and mathematically that are NOT valid and have no empirical evidence of their validity. To be "plausible" physically and mathematically isn't a sufficient criteria to be valid, not by a longshot.
Like Superstring theory, M-theory, Loop Quantum Gravity, some aspects of General Relativity, Inflationary theory. You are partially correct about this. But, if a theory is mathematically and physically plausible, and if there is no primacy among competing theories, and if the theories are testable, then these are good enough reasons to explore them further without being chastized, which is why physicists can do so with the theories I just cited. And ZPE energy extraction fits all such criteria.

ZapperZ said:
No one here is arguing about the validity of the Casimir effect. I've attended enough talks by various people to know such a thing is well documented. But pay attention to how small, and how difficult it is to achieve such a thing even with an applied field! Such an effect is consistent with the extremely weak effects expected out of such a vacuum state! None of the seminars that I've attended have people made the same claim as Puthoff. What does he know that they don't?
None of them are trying to tap zero-point energy, so naturally they won't even be thinking along these lines. Keep in mind however that dynamical Casimir fusion is theoretically possible, and once again, may have already been observed in sonoluminescence and acoustic inertial confinement fusion.


ZapperZ said:
I think A LOT about theoretical physics.
Glad to hear that.

ZapperZ said:
I just don't think much of exegerated claims of something being possible "on paper" that has gone on for years without any kind of improvement or progress.

Zz.
Once again, there are considerably less resources being devoted to ZPE extraction. And, there have actually been admittedly small improvements and progress in the field. I can cite some of them if you like.


Cheers,
Maaneli
 
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  • #27
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Originally posted by tdunc:I wont even begin to get involved is this discussion. Im merely pointing out the fact that it seems to me that it is more than a common occurance on PF to see the usage of the word crackpot when anything outside the textbooks is presented. New theories are just Not welcomed here whatsoever;
I think you will come to find that the reason it is such a common occurance is because there are very educated people here on PF that are intelligent enough to see what others may not.

Paden Roder
 
  • #28
Doc Al
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Maaneli said:
And I was responding to Doc Al's ignorant, knee-jerk characterization of Puthoff and his work as crackpottery. And I explicitly said in previous posts that Puthoff's views are controversial and not of the majority. This doesn't make him a crackpot however!! But the fact that you are defending what he said makes me think that maybe you agree with him! And that's unreasonable.
About his ZPE work under the dubious auspices of the "Institute for Advanced Study", I cannot comment. But nothing you've said changes my opinion of Puthoff, who, in my opinion, was made a laughing stock by Geller (or rather by Randi, who exposed Geller). (And yet you used Uri Geller's own website as a reference in your first post. :rolleyes: Tell me you're not serious.)

And I agree that just because someone is a crank, doesn't mean that all of his work is complete nonsense or without value. And, similarly, just because someone has done serious, worthwhile work in one area, does not mean they are not a crank and a crackpot in other areas. (Especially if there's a buck to be made.)
 
  • #29
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Let me reiterate that Puthoff did not claim to verify Geller's "psychic" abilities. I made this very clear in my first two posts. They specifically stated that they found no evidence for his alleged psychokinesis, but did find some evidence for so called "remote viewing" though they never said this was proof of some psychical ability. And whether the reference was to Geller's website is irrelevant. I cited that page because it is the only freely available archive of the originial studies that were published in Nature. You can't find them anywhere else on the internet for free.

You realize Doc Al that Randi was not in the presence of Puthoff and Targ during their experiments. In fact, if you bother to take Randi's description of the methodology that Puthoff and Targ used and you compare Randi's understanding of the conclusions vs the methodology and conclusions described in the ACTUAL papers published in Nature, then you will find that Randi made a number of mistakes. And so I ask you, what makes you trust Randi's interpretation of the studies over the actual studies as described in the published papers? Also keep in mind that, in general, a magician can fool practically ANY scientist. And in fact, dozens of other scientists who tested Geller made even more remarkable claims of verification. So once again, why does this make Puthoff, in particular, a crank?

An regarding your coments about the "dubious auspices of the "Institute for Advanced Study",", once again, the IAS is privately funded by G.W. Church Jr., and by some private aerospace contractors like Boeing and Northrop; and occasionally they would get funding from from NASA's BPP when it was around. So there's nothing suspect about Puthoff's group.

And Puthoff has never made a dime off of his ZPE work because corporations like Pennzoil and Exxon-Mobil have directly told him that it's too risky. If it really was about making money, which it seems is what your implying, it would be stupid to take this route. Blacklight Power has done a much better job of making money off their hydrino theory.
 

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