Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

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Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:53 am

02.04.2019 – Experimental Observations on Magnets

[1] I’m excited to get started! This is my proper beginning. I’ve just had to remind myself of two things: (1) it’s okay that this magnetism kit is “for children”; experiment and observation demand a sense of humility and playfulness, a sense of joyful questioning that begins with “huh...that’s weird,” and extends endlessly with more questions, and (2) the majority of these experiments were once groundbreaking, and opened up the entire expanse of knowledge about magnetism, dielectricity, and electricity itself: it’s good to begin here.

[2] In front of me I’ve got “The Boy Electrician,” open to the first chapter, “Magnets & Magnetism”; I’ve also got William Gilbert’s “On the Lodestone and Magnetic Bodies,” as well as the Eisco experimental kit guidebook. My kit comes with: x2 bar magnets with a keeper for each; x1 horseshoe magnet with a keeper; x3 ring magnets; x2 small compasses; x1 100g bottle of iron filings; x4 metal plates, each 1”x1”, of Cu, Fe, Zn, and Al; and x1 small lodestone. The kit guidebook begins by describing the difference between “temporary” magnets (coils with currents running thru them), and “permanent” magnets (the lodestone, magnetite, the Earth, etc.). Supposedly, permanent magnets have “domains” - a cellular structure of smaller magnetic fields - and the strength of the magnet is relative to the alignment of these domains, which improves in the presence of a stronger magnet. [This idea of domains hasn’t been explored thru experiment yet, it’s just been suggested by the guidebook.]

[3] How do the magnets interact with each other, and other objects? When I brought the two ends of the bar magnets, both marked ‘S’ for south, towards each other head on, both with the side marked ‘S’ facing up, the closer I brought the magnets the more tension I began to feel in the space between, as if there’s a spring in between the two tips. Which makes more sense? To discuss the "poles" repelling each other, or to describe the tension developing within the space?

[4] Stainless steel is magnetic apparently; both bar magnets are attracted to the metal ruler I’m trying to use to measure the distance between the tips of the magnets. (I should consider getting a plastic ruler; do magnets attract plastic?) At ~2” away, the tips of the magnets don’t have much affect on each other, not much tension between them; at 1”, still no apparent repulsion (tension?) between them; at ~0.5” away, the magnets begin repelling each other; I started feeling the tension. The magnets weren’t so strong that I couldn’t bring the tips together, but it was by force, and if I let go, the magnet was immediately repelled (thrust away). The largest amount of tension I could notice was at ~0.125”. This tension didn’t change if I flipped the magnet 180deg to its back (so that the marked ‘S’ faced down, as opposed to up), for either one or both: so long as both ‘S’ ends were approaching each other, the tension emerged in the space and they repelled each other. The same thing was true if I brought both of the ‘N’ poles of the magnets together.

[5] The exact opposite was the case with the bar magnets if the ‘N’ pole of one magnet approaches the ‘S’ pole of another. If that’s the case, it’s as if the magnets jerk towards each other thru the space, they attract one another, as if some force is pushing them together from behind, or pulling them together from the center of the space; as if something has just rushed out of the space, leaving a vacuum behind.

[6] Here’s an interesting observation! If two similar poles, either “N + N” or “S + S”, are brought to the steel ruler, they both attract the ruler; but if the magnets are arranged “S + N” or “N + S”, and they connect poles, the attraction between them and the ruler stops! More curious, if the bar magnets are arranged perpendicular to the edge of the ruler, with similar poles (N + N or S + S) facing said edge, and they approach, the attraction feels stronger than if the bar magnets approach the edge while laying parallel to it. This observation may demonstration the “domains” of the ruler: when the bar magnet approaches the ruler perpendicular to the edge, the “N” pole of the magnet is significantly closer to the edge of the ruler than the “S” pole of the same bar magnet, and so the domains at the edge of ruler align with a clear, coherent “S” polarity to match the pole of the bar magnet; when the bar magnet approaches parallel to the edge, both poles are the same distance from the edge, and so the domains of the ruler edge assume both “N” and “S” polarities to meet each pole of the bar magnet, and the attraction becomes weaker. When arranged perpendicular, with similar poles, I could gently pull the ruler down the table, and the two magnets would securely follow. If arranged parallel, and I began to pull the ruler down, at least one of the magnets seems to “stand up” on its own.

[7] Even more interesting! If the magnets are arranged as an “L”, with the two “N” poles forming the corner and the “S” poles pointing perpendicular to each other, along the edge of the ruler, the “N” poles don’t repel each other! If the the bar magnets were arranged perpendicular to the edge of the ruler, with opposite poles facing the edge (“N” + S”), there was again a clear, stable attraction; if arranged as an “L”, with one pair of “N” and “S” poles forming the corner, and the other pair and the ends, there’s an attraction, but it’s weak; if arranged parallel to the ruler edge, the poles attract each other and seem to close the magnetic “circuit”, and there’s no attraction on the ruler. I need to study this circuit more! I can play with different configurations of magnets and study how their poles can interact with each other beyond just two.

[8] I then studied the effect of the magnets on other objects in the house. These demonstrated no effect at all: wooden beads, hemp thread, wooden handle of paint brush, bristles of the brush, duct tape, pencil erasure, rubber, staple in the experimental kit guidebook (what kind of metal is this?), paper, plastic ruler (hey, no magnetism!), dried garlic husk, US nickel (also interesting, isn’t nickel magnetic?), plastic wrap, book (cover or pages), paper card, and a pane of glass. The magnets demonstrated a strong effect on these items: metal in the paintbrush, a poker chip (why? the magnet didn’t response to the plastic rap, or the plastic ruler? is there metal in the chip?), paper clip, different kind of staples, metal in push pin, metal clip. So, the magnets mostly only affected metals. Why? The metals seem to have some kind of magnetic potential that’s sleeping until another active magnet comes around: the active magnetism in the bar magnet awakens or excites the potential magnetism in the metals, but only in the presence of the bar magnet; take it away, and the magnetic potential goes to sleep again. Without trying to let what I already assume/know affect what I observe, somehow, this seems like a resonant behavior, a sympathetic behavior: like a opera singer who lets out a note at the same frequency of a wine glass, and the glass begins vibrating as well; stop the singing, and the vibration stops. Are bar magnets “singing?” Are they vibrating in such as way that the space around them induces a similar “singing” in the metals?

[9] When testing the metal clips, the magnetism would travel from the bar magnet, thru one clip, to another. The magnet could only seem to support four clips, each one holding on just a bit weaker than the last, and if (supposing they were attached to an “S” pole) I closed the magnetic circuit with a “N” pole, all of the clips will fall and lose their magnetism immediately. It’s not even all metals that are affected by the magnets: aluminum, zinc, and copper didn’t seem to be affected at all when I tested the 1”x1” plates; only the iron square.

[10] Fun fact I learned in the guidebook: the Earth’s geographic “North Pole” is actually its magnetic “S” pole, which is why the “N” end of a compass will point you geographically North. This was interesting behavior with the compass and the bar magnet. If I set the compass so that the “N” point was facing head-on to the “S” pole of the bar magnet, and I turned the “S” pole of the magnet 90degrees counter-clockwise, then the “N” point of the compass would turn 90degrees clockwise. If I turned the “S” pole of the magnet 90degrees clockwise, then the “N” point of the compass would turn 90degrees counter-clockwise. The disc magnets are interesting as well too! They’re flat discs, with holes in the center of them: one side of the disc is the entire “N” pole, and the other side the “S” pole. The disc magnets feel stronger than the bar magnets do, and I’m wondering if that’s anything to do with the surface area? The attraction between the two disc magnets is stronger than the attraction between a disc and a bar magnet.

[11] In magnetic attraction, are the magnets “jumping?” - as in, are they accelerating? Do they move faster the closer they get to each other? They seem like they do, since the force gets stronger the closer the magnets get to each other.

[12] The guidebook also defines a “magnetic field,” a region of space where there is an active magnetic force, and I performed experiments with the magnets and the iron filings to demonstrate the “lines of force” occupying the space between the magnets and their poles.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:01 am

02.05.2019 – Experimental Notes on Magnetism

[13] Yesterday, I was able to work thru the entire experimental guidebook for the Eisco magnet kit. This produced some really exciting results already! I should sum up what I learned yesterday, and what questions I can ask myself.

[14] I really want to note the tension I felt yesterday between similar poles, and how the magnetism seemed to be happening in the space, between the magnets, as opposed to within the magnets themselves. The lines of force that can be demonstrated by the iron filings are responsible for this. Aren’t they what act as the “spring,” producing the tension the closer the poles get to each other?

[15] Another simple but important observation: each magnet has two poles, one “N” and one “S”: similar poles repel each other, and opposite poles attract each other. It feels almost ridiculous to note that as an "observation," it's a fact so well known that you learn it in elementary school. But in the 1600's, that observation was a groundbreaking realization when Gilbert wrote about it.

[16] Here’s a clear issue: on the one hand, I’m talking about the poles of the magnets and how they attract/repel, but on the other, I’m talking about the lines of force and the space between the magnets. What’s the bridge across them, between the magnets and their poles as the “actors” (at a distance..), and the space between the magnets?

[17] One big question: how can I describe the magnetic force around the poles of the magnet? Because they attraction and repulsion happens 360degrees around the horizontal and vertical axes of the pole, from any direction, as if the magnetic force where a sphere sitting on top of the pole of the bar magnet.

[18] Today, I’m going to work thru Chapter I of “The Boy Electrician”, “Magnets & Magnetism.” The chapter uses needles to perform several experiments. I’m going to use a paper clip! I’ve straightened out the clip as best as possible, and it definitely has a magnetic potential. I took the “S” pole of a bar magnet and stroked the clip, right to left only, x50. When I brought the clip to a small metal pin, there was a small but noticeable effect! It’s very small, but it’s there! In my notes, the magnetic potential in the clip remained active from 5:41PM to at least 5:45PM, four minutes away from the bar magnet. I didn’t note when, or if, the magnetic potential became dormant again. Yesterday, I wanted to test a hot glue-gun stick for magnetic potential: no effect.

[19] Two notes, one of which is very curious: (1) the bar magnet can attract a metal pin thru the hardcover of my notebook, as well as the cardboard box of the magnet kit. Note for experiment: how far will the magnetic force penetrate an object with no magnetic potential, to reach another magnetic object on the other side? What is the relation? (2) What was curious was that if I moved the magnet horizontally across the cover of the notebook, the clip would spin as it followed the magnet! The little pin sticks out in alignment with the pole of the magnet, and spins on its little head like a top! If I go left, it spins counter-clockwise; if I go right, it spins clockwise. I did this five times, for each pole of the magnet: same result each time. The same was demonstrated on the cardboard of the magnet kit, to make sure it wasn’t an effect of the paper in the notebook. Why is the pin spinning? Magnets and spins. Magnets and rotations...

[20] According to “The Boy Electrician,” a magnet shouldn’t be able to attract other magnetic bodies thru iron; but, I placed my bar magnet up to the 1”x1” Fe plate, and the magnet can still attract metal paper pins thru the plate: without the plate, the magnet can support four pins securely; with the plate, it can handle three pins securely and a fourth weakly, so, if anything, the presence of the plate is consuming a small amount of the magnet’s force. Maybe if I try with a larger piece of Fe relative to the bar magnet? Something that has enough surface area to consume all the lines of magnetic force? Or thick enough that they won’t be able to penetrate the Fe completely?

[21] I placed one of the bar magnets in the bottom of a small tape container (sort of a make-shift boat), and placed that within a larger tuperware full of water, where it floated on the surface. I then just got to play with the “boat,” using the “N” and “S” poles of the other bar magnet to push and pull the boat. In this setup, when the boat is on the opposite end of the tuperware, it will come straight across the water to meet the magnet in a straight line, head on (this is if opposite poles are presented to each other). If similar poles are presented to each other, in order to repel, the boat spins about to present its opposing pole; again, magnets demonstrating spin. There is something essential about rotation that’s connected to magnetism.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:15 am

02.23.2019 – Observations on Dielectric Experiments ~7:00PM

[22] While I’m waiting for my sphere magnet to get here (in order to proceed with Gilbert’s experiments, where he used terellas), I started with my electrostatic, or more properly, dielectric experiments. I’m going to continue to use “The Boy Electrician,” (S.1) along with “Experimental and Historical Foundations of Electricity – Vol.I” (S.2). I started today with Chapter II, “Electrification by Friction.”

[23] I cut six 3/4” pieces of grid paper, and labeled them A-F, respectively. Using strips of electrical tape on the table, I marked six spots, each 1” apart from each other, as the spot for each strip of paper, in a vertical line. The book says to use plastic straws for the experiments; for now, I’m going to use glass and ebonite friction rods. The glass rod is ~7.75” long, and 0.5” in diameter. I brought the rod towards the bits of paper, without touching them: holding the bar horizontally, one end in each hand, I brought the rod down over the length of the column of paper, at a distance of ~0.5” inch above them – no effect. Holding the rod vertically, I lowered the rod down above the bits of paper to ~0.5” above them – no effect. With the rod in one hand, I swept it across first horizontally, then vertically, then diagonally – no effect.

[24] Using another strip of electrical tape, I marked the rod at half its length, and grabbing below this mark with one hand, I used a silk cloth in the other to rub the rod, back to front only, x50. I then brought the rod over the paper – no effect. Then, I rubbed the rod again, x50, this time front-and-back, noticing more heat and friction. I brought the rod to the paper, and noticed a slight effect! The top-right corner of “A” jumped to the rod and stuck to it, but wouldn’t lift entirely off the table. I accidentally touched “B” with the rod, and it clung for a brief second. I did this again with x100 strokes, and “C” jumped out to the tip of the rod. Once again, x100 strokes, and I brought the tip of the rod to “E”, which jumped out but didn’t lift off the table to meet the rod. All weak effects, but present.

[25] I changed the rubbing materials: first, a sheet of cotton, back-to-front only, x100 strokes: the top-right corner of “D” rose to meet the rod, but not off the table. Again, x100 strokes, this time back-and-forth, “C” rose to the tip of the rod and slightly followed, then fell to table. “A” clung to the touch, then fell. A stronger effect was shown with the plastic bag as the rubbing material: x50 strokes, front-and-back, and “F” rose to the tip of the rod, followed, and flipped on its back; “C” then rose to meet the middle of the rod, and stood on-end towards the rod, then fell on its back too. I did this again, x50 strokes, and another big effect! “E” jumped straight off the table to the rod, moved from the tip to the middle of the rod with a quick jolt, then fell askew back on the table ~2” away from its original spot! But here was something interesting: with x100 strokes, “E” flickered just a bit, “A” gave the tiniest twitch, and that was it – no other effect. I got a stronger response still with x50 strokes using computer paper: “F” jumped straight up and clung to the rod! Stuck to the rod and didn’t fall off until I took it nearly 2’ in the air above the table surface. With x100 strokes, “A” jumped straight to the rod, then, jumped straight back to the table! “C” then jumped to the tip of the rod, and clung as I took it about 6” off the table. I then let down my hair, rolled it around the rod, and rubbed it x100 – no effect. I did x50 strokes of the sheet of wool next, and got “D” and “F” to stand up, but not to jump to the rod. X100 strokes with the wool sheet got “E” to flap up twice, and “D” to rise on its end, but no jumps. This was all with the glass rod.

[26] With x50 strokes of the wool cloth on the ebonite rod, “E” jumped to the rod and clung the full length of my arm-span above the table; it fell as I rolled the rod forward in my hand. With x65 strokes, “F” slowly jumped and clung to the rod; it’s still on now as I write. It also remained attached to the rod as I rose it my full arm-span above the table. Interesting interaction with the table, the friction rod, and “F” - when I touched the rod to the surface of the table, did the loose corner of “F” cling more tightly to the rod?

[27] Experiment 2.3 in (S.2) deals with which bodies are attracted to the friction rods. I assembled a variety of objects, and using x50 strokes of the wool cloth against the ebonite rod, they demonstrated the following effects: (1) Strands of hair – definite attraction, rose off the table but didn’t jump; one strand stuck to the rod, and did so multiple times as I pulled it off. It did this a second and third time!
(2) Bits of cardboard – strong effect, made four small pieces move, and the last clung for a short moment.
(3) Salt – reacted almost like the iron filings to a magnet, little grains jumped up and stuck to the rod; at x100 strokes, even more grains jumped up to meet the rod.
(4) Sugar – jumped more forcefully than the salt did.
(5) Parchment paper – an enormous effect! Six pieces jumped up and clung to the rod! Five are still on as I take this note; two have just fallen off as I rose the rod to my full arm-span, three remain; one fell as I rolled the rod back and forth in my hand.
(6) Seashell – no effect at x50 strokes; no effect at x100 strokes.
(7) Soda can (aluminum) – a small effect, which was surprising; I didn’t think it’d attract metals..At x100 strokes, the effect was weak and only moved the smallest piece, but still, the effect was there.
(8) Single staple – no effect.
(9) Rubber eraser – no effect.
(10) Bits of small plastic – interesting effect; a slower response, but clear attraction, and several pieces stuck to the rod; as a bit of plastic on the rod touched a bit of plastic on the table, either both pieces would come away with the rod, or both would remain on the table.
(11) Candle wax – uncertain, with x50 and x100 strokes; I thought I could see the smallest shakes or fidgets, but definitely not clear.
(12) Hemp twine – clear attraction, one piece jumped straight to the rod, then straight back to the table (second time I’ve seen this…); other pieces jumped ~1” away to meet the rod.
(13) Pillow stuffing – a clear but weak effect.
(14) Flour – clear effect, same as the sugar and salt.
(15) Dried flower petals – a very strong effect, all four petals jumped and clung to the rod.
(16) Red phosphorous from match head – very strong effect, best attraction of the “granules” so far!
(17) Wooden match stick – weaker, but clear movement across the table.
(18) Bit of thin, copper wire – at x50 strokes, there was a very small effect, it was hard to see clearly, but it was there. There was no discernible attraction with the glass rod.

[28] So here’s a clear distinction between dielectricity and magnetism: the magnetic potential only seems to exist in metals, while the dielectric potential seems to exist in the majority of bodies. The ones that didn’t show an attraction – did they just need a stronger charge? Will they excite attraction with more static? Will dielectric forces affect metals that magnetism won’t? Will metals with magnetic potential demonstrate no effects with the friction rod? I should check with the iron filings!

[29] I took an empty aluminum soda can, and laid it horizontally on its side on the kitchen counter. Holding the ebonite rod in my right-hand, I rubbed the rob with x50 strokes of the wool cloth. I put the rod parallel to the side of the can, and the can followed the rod! I can make the can “chase” the rod by first putting it in front, then in back, back-and-forth. The second time I did this, the can rolled off the counter! If I let the rod firmly touch the can for a good moment, and then tried to get it to follow the rod, no attraction; I did this a second time, and again, after the rod made solid contact with the can, after a moment, the can demonstrated no attraction. The magnet demonstrates no effect on the can, whether “S” or “N” pole is presented.

[30] I then opened the sink tap to let out a small stream of water, and after rubbing the ebonite rod x50 strokes with the wool cloth, the stream of water bends in, towards and around the rod! The effect is stronger at the top of the stream than the bottom – according to the text, this is because the water is moving faster at the end of the stream than the top. This was also done with a water droplet, whose shape stretched out towards the rod after it was rubbed x40 strokes with the wool cloth.

[31] Gilbert says in “On the Lodestone and Magnetic Bodies” that the only substance that didn’t demonstrate some kind of attraction to the rubbed rods is fire, or rarified objects – this was very, very difficult to assess. At first, after stroking the rod with wool, I thought the flame was definitely moving towards the rod; after doing it a second time, I wasn’t certain at all – was the flame moving because the movement of the rod towards the flame circulated the air in the space around it? Was it the natural flicker of the flame? Was my hand just moving the rod into the flame? I did this several times, with the glass and ebonite rod, with the plastic, paper, and the wool cloth, and I couldn’t make any absolute claim. I don’t think I saw any attraction, but definitely need to explore more, with a stronger source of charge.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:47 am

02.24.2019 – Observations on Dielectrical Experiments

[32] Today I’m going to quickly work thru Ch.2 of (S.1), titled “Static Electricity,” and then I’ll try to build a few versoria to continue with (S.2). The chapter makes note of the difference between “insulators” and “conductors,” the latter being materials that electricity can travel thru well. I haven’t reached conductors and insulators yet in (S.2), only electrics and non-electrics, the difference being the absence of any perceivable dielectric force after a bit of friction.

[33] Another note, it makes the distinction between “two types of electricity: static, and current.” It’s hard not to bring in what I already know, but, I do know that supposedly the presence of any current comes with the presence of a magnetic field; if that’s the case, then are static electricity and current electricity the same? Are they both “electricity?” Or does “electricity” i.e. “current-forces” involve the interaction between static and magnetic forces? Are they both components of the current? I’m getting ahead of myself (as an addendum: Steinmetz will later say in "Electric Discharges, Waves and Impulses" that yes, dielectricity is just a component of electricity, the other being magnetism).

[34] Following the text in Ch.2 of (S.1), I made a small electroscope: using a glass bottle as a base, I stuck a bit of 16 gauge copper wire thru the cork of the bottle, curved the wire into something like a hook, and attached a pith ball on some silk string to the end of the hook. When I just presented the ebonite friction rod, no effect. After x50 strokes with the wool cloth, the pith ball responded enormously! It jumped straight to the rod, stuck there for some time, and then let go! After another moment it came back to the rod, weaker, but still clung, and then let go again. It did this once more, weaker still. Again, x20 strokes, and the ball followed the rod; it didn’t immediately “jump away”, as (S.1) suggested it would, but instead held for a good moment; again, x20 strokes, and it clung, this time for ~20 seconds. If, as (S.1) says, the charge on the rod passes to the pith ball on their contact (pith being a conductor?), I expected the pith ball to respond to a new, neutral pith ball – this didn’t happen, no effect. Why? I just noticed that the hanging pith ball is making contact w/ the glass jar: is this why? Is the charge moving from the rod, to the ball, to the jar?

[35] I extended the copper wire of the electroscope out, like the arm of a crane, so that ball can’t touch the jar, and shortened the length of the silk thread. I attached the second pith ball to the electroscope, and did x20 strokes on the ebonite rod with wool: both balls moved towards the rod, the new more strongly than the first, but counter to what the book said, there wasn’t any flying apart – no repulsion. Again, x20 strokes: again, both balls just clung to the rod. Again, x20 strokes – this time I touched the rod to the copper wire, thinking it might conduct the charge down to both the pith balls – no effect, mostly likely because the silk string won’t conduct the charge down the balls?

[36] Next, I fashioned a really rough stirrup out of the copper wire, and suspended it above a blanket (to catch falling objects) with two pieces of hemp thread. I used computer paper to stroke the glass rod x50 times, then suspended it in the stirrup; x50 strokes of the wool on ebonite rod – hard to tell of any effect, the strings in the stirrup weren’t settled. I steadied the stirrup, then again: x50 strokes of the glass rod with silk this time, x50 of wool on the ebonite rod, and I think I saw the slightest effort of the glass rod to meet the ebonite rod – small attraction. Once more, and this time, I tested to see if I could get a clear, 90deg spin of the glass rod following the ebonite. This time, with another x50/x50 strokes respectively of the same setup, I got definite attraction! The glass rod followed the ebonite rod, three separate times, the last turning more than the 90degrees – absolutely attraction!

[37] This time, instead of the ebonite and wool, I used the silk again with the Perspex to see if the glass rod was repelled – again, attraction. Maybe some combo of the rods and cloths? Again, x50 strokes of wool on ebonite, x60 of cotton on Perspex – enough attraction to get the Perspex to spin 360deg in the stirrup; x100 of cotton on glass, x50 of cotton on Perspex – this time, possibly some repulsion, but the glass is such a poor dielectric that the charge is too little to tell. What about x500 strokes of cotton the glass rod? I got up to x300, with x50 of cotton on the Perspex, and still no effect.

[38] What about the small glass stirring rod I have? Is it a proper dielectric? Yes! With x50 strokes of computer paper, clear attraction on the pith balls of the electroscope! So, I’ll use two glass rods, both with the paper (since it’s a better electric than silk or cotton, apparently) at x50 strokes each, and I’ll suspend the thinner rod in the stirrup since it should require less charge than the larger to respond – still, only attraction! No repulsion, even with two dielectrics of the same material (glass), both rubbed by the same electric (computer paper) the same number of strokes. Why no repulsion? So weird...One last time, with both glass rods, and then with the thin rod and the Perspex, x50 strokes in both setups – again, only attraction. Just one last setup, thin glass rod and ebonite rod, using paper on both, and then, using paper on glass and wool on ebonite – paper on ebonite, no effect; wool on ebonite, attraction again. Only attraction so far for today. Could it possibly have something to do with the stirrup being made of copper, a conductor?

[39] That’s it for Ch.2 of (S.1), time to build some versoria. I’m going to start with the ‘first type’ of Gilbert’s from (S.2). I took a small, circular disk of cork, and pushed a sowing needle thru the center; taking a paper pin, I flatted out the two legs, and using a screwdriver, I pressed a small divet into the underside of the pinhead; I used this divet to rest the pin on the tip of the sewing needle – while crude, the apparatus works! I was unsuccessful at producing a versorium of the ‘second type’ - I didn’t understand the instructions re: the hat, the pin, the system's center of gravity – the hat just kept sliding down the bottom of the pin – need to try again. I decided to skip the ‘third kind’, since I basically built this earlier with the stirrup. I ran the first experiment in Chapter 3, with a versorium of the first type: x20 strokes of wool on the ebonite rod, and I could make the versorium spin several times in any direction that I wanted, following the rod. Even with just x40 strokes of the silk on the glass rod (the weakest combination of dielectrics I’ve found by far), I got a slight but clear effect; x20 strokes with cotton on the Perspex rod got another clear, strong effect, and a strong effect too with x20 strokes of cotton on the large glass rod. Using the versorium, I was even able to demonstrate the effect with my small, flat piece of amber! A clear, but weak, result with the cotton cloth, and a strong, distinct one with the wool!

[40] The metal of my versorium’s mobile has a magnetic potential, as I learned after bringing out a bar magnet, so I made another quick one, this time fashioning the mobile out of aluminum from a soda can, Au having no magnetic potential. What’s curious is that once the mobile is on the pin (but not before), I think I’m seeing the smallest bit of magnetic effect, a small rotation as the mobile followed the bar magnet. It can't be the Au, so is it the sewing needle? It has magnetic potential. Is it spinning inside the cork, and the not the mobile of the versorium? To test this, I’d need a non-magnetic needle.

[41] I then built five more verosia with sewing pins, using cardboard squares instead of the cork, and then I set them up on the tabletop: two on the left side, two on the right, one on top, one on bottom, with a gap of ~6” in between the top and bottom. X20 strokes of wool on the ebonite rod: as I dropped the tip into the center, a few of the versoria moved to point to it; some were too far away I think to feel the charge – if I brought the tip closer to them, they began to respond (what’s the relation between the distance of the charges and their strength?). Let’s move everything closer, so that gap between top and bottom is only 3”. This time, I arranged only 5 versoria into a pentagon. X20 strokes of wool on ebonite: at first, they all aligned really well to the tip of the rod in the center; but, with my left elbow on the table, the effect seemed to get weaker, and diminished. Or maybe not? On the second time, I made no contact with the left elbow (concerned that the charge was being conducted thru my hand, down my elbow, to the table), and it didn’t seem to weaken as much; did I misread the first observation? X50 strokes this time: no, the effect definitely seems to be weakening – they all align at first, all five, but then they each began to respond with diminishing strength to the rod as I moved from one versorium to the next, until not nearly at all; I could only get one to rotate freely and well. Another x50, and this time, I approached one versorium first and got it to spin well, then I brought the rod to the center – a small, weak alignment of all of them, and then weak effect still as I brought the rod to all the versoria individually again. I did this again, same result. I did this again, starting back in the center – again, a clear but gentle alignment, and then a weakening spin as I moved from one to the next. Is the charge being eaten by the versoria? If I drop the tip into the center, and all the versoria “attach” themselves or “focus” on the charge of the rod, does the rod have less to give once I bring it to them individually? Have portions of the charge been partitioned to each one?

[42] I’m tired, this cold is taking it out of me, and I’m not being as diligent with my notes or observations as I should. I did however do x40 strokes of wool on the ebonite rod, and I dropped the rod horizontally down in the gap between the versoria – the points aligned with entire rod, all along the rubbed surface. As opposed to magnets, which seem to have all of their force contained in the “poles,” the dielectric force maps to the entire rubbed surface of the dielectric, working perpendicular to the surface. No “poles.” Done for the day today, good work.
Last edited by BecomingTesla on Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:55 am

02.25.2019 – Observations on Dielectrical Experiments, ~9:30PM

[43] It’s very late, and wage-work was tedious, but just a quick experiment on mutual action: x200 strokes of the wool on the ebonite rod (the lightest of the three) to see if it would cling to the bedroom wall at a height of ~2.5’ - no good, the rod fell to the floor immediately. Is this because there’s no mutual action, or, because the force of gravity overpowered the dielectric force? We’ll try with straws and see.

02.26.2019 – Observations on Dielectrical Experiments, ~8:45PM

[44] I snatched a few straws from the restaurant where we ate tonight, and used one for the experiment on mutual action. It’s a plastic straw, and I gave it at least 30-40 strokes of wool to charge it. The straw stuck to the wall, and is still hanging there, at least three minutes later! (S.2) Suggests that it’ll stick to glass, metal, or any other kind of surface, really. Need to experiment (door, windows, fridge, bathtub, etc.

02.27.2019 – Observations on Dielectrical Experiments, ~9:30PM

[45] Tonight, I’m using the thin glass rod as my “neutral” rod for this quick experiment. For my versorium, I’m going to use a sewing needle thru a thick disc of cork, tip pointed up, with a cut piece of plastic straw as the mobile. Using the plastic versorium, I brought the glass rod to the mobile – no effect, no charge on the rod or the plastic. Then, x50 strokes of wool on the left side of the plastic straw mobile, which I placed back upon the needle. I brought the glass rod back again – no effect. I setup a quick versorium of the first kind, to see whether the plastic had charge – it did, the versorium mobile follow the plastic straw. I placed the plastic straw back as the mobile and brought the glass again – no effect.

[46] I brought out a new plastic straw, and some weird shit happened! I unwrapped the new straw and brought it near the metal versorium to test its charge, expecting a null result, but it moved! A very strong effected was observed, but when I brought this straw to the plastic versorium, no effect was observed at all. What’s going on?

[47] I punched a brand new metal mobile for the versorium, and tried the “new” plastic straw against this, thinking that maybe the charge laid on the metal mobile and was inducing the charge in the straw, but no – the “new” straw still had a decent effect on the new metal mobile. I brought my thin glass rod to the new metal versorium – no effect, still charge neutral. I did x100 strokes of wool on the left side of the new plastic mobile, then I brought the glass rod back – a very strong effect! Mutual action again! Not only are neutral bodies attracted to electrified bodies, but electrified bodies are attracted to neutral bodies as well.

03.03.2019 – Observations on Dielectrical Experiments, ~5:00PM

[48] Today I begin working with dielectric repulsion! I began with Chapter 4 of (S.2), starting with Experiment 4.2: I cut x2 pieces of plastic straw, both ~5cm in length; I colored one side of each straw black, to indicate that this portion of the straw had not been charged by friction. I then placed each piece on its respective versorium, which I placed parallel to one another, ~1” apart – no effect observed. I then rubbed the unmarked tips of each straw x50 strokes with the wool cloth, and brought the versoria together again, this time side to side, with their mobile’s following along the same line. The tip of the versoria on the left-side spun counterclockwise to the left, away from the tip of the other! I pulled it away, reset the position of the mobile, and brought it back – the same effect! These flat cardboard versoria are too weak, they keep breaking. I need to buy more cork or slice another wine cork into workable pieces. I repeated the experiment again, now with one of the pieces of straw in my hand as a “free” charge rather than as a mobile: x50 strokes each of wool – a clear and tremendous effect, absolutely repulsion! This is first and really only distinct demonstration of repulsion I’ve encountered so far!
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:04 am

03.13.2019 – Observations on Electrical Experiments

[49] I quickly made my own “dielectric pendulum” using a small glass bottle as the insulated support, and two wooden sticks superglued together to form an ‘L’, flipped vertically along its axis, with a pith ball dangling off the end from an attached silk thread. I brought the glass rod to the pith ball (the pith still possessed charge from an old experiment), and it immediately flew to the rod, made contact, and moved away (it actually did this twice). I gave the pendulum a fresh pith ball, and found that the thin glass rod was properly neutral by testing it against a metal versorium. I brought the rod to the pith ball – no effect; actually, no...there is a very, very slightest effect, so the rod must have had the slightest charge that even the versorium didn’t detect, but I’m sure – I changed the position of the rod from one side of the pith to the other, and the tug of the pith responded in turn, just barely.

[50] X50 strokes on the glass rod with wool – as I slowly brought the rod to the pith ball, the ball moved towards it; they made contact before I could react, and I couldn’t note any repulsion after the contact. X50 more strokes, and this time I allowed them to make contact on purpose – I didn’t note any repulsion, only attraction: it held for several seconds, and then I had to to separate them by stroking the rod down the pith. X50 more strokes of wool – I think I saw the slightest initial repulsion when I brought the rod close to the pith, but then the pith flew to the rod and held for over ten seconds. As I lift the rod up the pith eventually fell, but is this repulsion or gravity? X50 more strokes – still only attraction. X50 more strokes – no noticeable repulsion. X50 more strokes – finally seeing a response similar to what (S.2) describes should happen: The pith ball flew to the rod, touched it, and then fell back immediately; it did this three times, with weakened effect each time! However, I had to change the angle of the glass rod relative to the position of the pith ball to make it happen; I kept the glass elevated above the pith ball, so the pith would have to jump “up” vertically as well as “out” horizontally to meet the rod. X50 more strokes – it worked again! But I can understand why it would take the versorium to demonstrate repulsion clearly, and why for so long it wasn’t clear whether repulsion was a distinct dielectric effect: the repulsion is so slight, and so easily confused with simply falling, that it’s hard to be clear what’s happening. I brought the glass rod close to the pith, the pith flew to the rod, made contact, and flew away again; I brought the glass rod close to the pith again, and again the rod flew to it, made contact, and flew away (S.2 describes this as the ‘ACR mechanism’, attraction-contact-repulsion).

[51] The next three times, I didn’t even have to move the rod closer or farther from the pith – the pith slowly reached its way back to the rod on its own, made contact, and ran again, each time with diminishing effect. I then tested a thin wooden skewer against a metal versorium – no effect. I brought the skewer to the pith, and noted a slight but clear attraction, and a repulsion after contact. So some of the charge that was on the thin glass rod was communicated to the pith ball on contact.

03.17.2019 – Notes on Dielectric Experiments

[52] I begin today with Experiment 4.10 in (S.2). I took off my boot so that by bare foot was on the floor, and grabbed the pith ball of my electric pendulum to “discharge it”, as indicated by (S.2) – the pith ball was not attracted to a fresh wooden skewer I grabbed, which was neutral of charge. I brought a charged straw near the pith ball and observed a strong, immediate attraction; I brought the straw near again, and it the pith jumped and held to the straw for several seconds. I put the straw down on the table, and brought the wooden skewer back to the pith ball – attraction, contact, repulsion – as well as a transfer of charge from the plastic straw to the pith, otherwise, why would it attract the neutral skewer?

[53] I took my boot off, discharged the skewer, plastic straw, and pith ball to ground by wrapping my hands around them (still not sure how well this worked tho…), and put my boot back on. I brought the skewer to the pith ball – no effect; brought the straw to the pith ball – some attraction, the straw was not fully discharged. I did x50 strokes of wool on the straw, brought it to the pith, and saw the ACR mechanism happen several times. I brought my finger to the pith ball and I saw the same mechanism, six times by my count. But this contradicts what (S.2) says should happen, because contact with my finger should discharge the pith. I had my boot on, let’s try with it off – boot off, I wrapped by hand around the pith to discharge it, and brought the wooden skewer back to test it – no effect. Boot back on. X50 stokes of wool on the plastic straw, and I witnessed the ACR mechanism over x20 times.

[54] I took my boot off, and brought my finger to the pith – the pith came, made contact, and was repelled. I put my boot back on, and brought by finger back – I still observed ACR. Why? With my boot off, and my foot connected to ground, (S.2) says that contact with my finger should discharge the pith ball. If that’s the case, how can it demonstrate the ACR mechanism multiple times? I quickly setup a metal versorium, and it indicated that the plastic straw still had charge (or, possibly, the mobile did), because there was clear attraction. I wrapped the mobile in my hand to discharge it, and tried to discharge the straw by making contact with metal objects (the oven, the fridge, the washing machine), but no luck – when I re-arranged the versorium I still saw an effect between the mobile and the straw. No discharge. But, there isn’t any effect between the straw and the dielectric pendulum: is the plastic straw charged, or the mobile? It must be the mobile, but wrapping it in my hand should have discharged it. I need to make tests with neutral apparatus. I wiped the straw with a wet paper towel (as indicated by S.2) and let it air dry on the table, then built a brand new metal mobile for the versorium with a fresh paper pin.

03.26.2019 – Observations on Dielectric Experiments

[55] Today I pick up where I left off with Chapter 4 of (S.2), working with dielectric repulsion and the ACR mechanism. I grabbed the straw which I had previously wiped with a wet paper towel to discharge it, and tested it against the brand new metal versorium – a noted effect, between the 17th and today it must have developed some charge by friction. I wiped it again and let it air dry – on the second test against the versorium, no effect. I measured and cut a 4” segment of the straw, and wrapped a bit of aluminum tape around one tip of the segment, then arranged it as the mobile of a versorium to perform experiment 4.11. I rubbed the free remainder of the plastic straw x50 strokes with the wool cloth and brought it to the versorium – no effect. Another x50 strokes – still no effect.

[56] I put the metal mobile back on the versorium and tested it against the plastic straw remainder, and there is definitely charge; maybe the straw isn’t free to spin on the head of the pin? I loosened it and put it back on the pin – still no effect at all when I brought the charged remainder of the plastic straw. I grabbed the ebonite rod, which had no charge as per the dielectric pendulum, and did x50 strokes with the wool cloth – nothing. Another x50 – still nothing. This is so bizarre, not at all what (S.2) indicates should be happening. What is going on? This is all fresh test apparatus. I grabbed another old straw from my bag, cut it, and used this as the mobile for the versorim; x50 strokes of wool on my original test straw (the remainder of the original), and tested this new plastic mobile – still nothing. I then did x50 strokes on the mobile straw – no effect. This is so bizarre – it’s a direct contradiction of my previous experiments with plastic mobiles. The only difference today has been that I wiped the straw th down with the wet paper towel; could this have done something? Residue water on the straw affecting its charge? I don’t understand. Going to end for today.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby MotionTheory » Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:48 am

Try these 2 experiments on magnetism

Only Push Force
https://youtu.be/e-HPePn7MTU

Magnetic Capture Zone
https://youtu.be/azh1XxsV3gQ?t=279
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Tue May 07, 2019 4:27 pm

04.20.2019 - Experimental Observations on Dielectrics

[57] Today I'm working on Ch.5, "Positive & Negative Charges," in (S.2), as well as a the brief section in Ch.1 of J.J. Thomson's "Elements of the Mathematical Theory of Electricity & Magnetism" (S.3). I began with Experiment 5.1 of (S.2): I grabbed a plastic straw and tested it against a metal versorium, as well as dielectric pendulums - no charge. I grabbed one half of the wool cloth, and did x40 strokes on the straw - strong response from the versorium, clear ACR mechanism. I grabbed the second half of the wool cloth, and did x40 strokes on a piece of silk cloth (the book says that silk rubbed with acrylic will produce a strong charge) - no effect; neither with another x40.

[58] Going to change the setup: I took my original plastic straw and did another x80 strokes of wool cloth, then brought it to the pith ball of the first dielectric pendulum (P1) - another ACR response. Then x80 strokes on the glass rod, which I brought to the second dielectric pendulum (P2) - an ACR response as well. On two wooden skewers, I pierced one pith ball wrapped in aluminium on the tip of each, and rubbed them the same way respectively, then brought them to them to P1 and P2 - no response. Was there enough charge communicated via contact to P1 and P2? Was there any charge on the two skewers? As I type these notes now, I'm noticing that they weren't tested against the metal versoria for charge.

[59] Okay, another setup: I have my ebonite friction rod (which will act as the "sealing wax" in S.3), and twice, I did x40 strokes of the wool rod then brought it to P1, another x40 strokes then brought it to P2. I then brought P1 and P2 together to observe any effect they had on each other - no effect. Again, was enough charge communicated to the pith from the contact?

[60] What am I doing wrong? All of these texts describe the experiments as if one instance of contact is enough to communicate the charge from my straws or friction rods to the pith balls of my pendulums, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Also, the majority of time the ACR response I've seen has been pretty weak, meaning that the pith will in fact cling to the rod, rather than "immediately be repelled" as both texts say it does: the pith will just stick there, and unless I shake it off or incline the rod, I don't see very clear repulsion...

[61] I did x20 strokes of wool on the ebonite rod, and tested it against a metal versorium - good effect. I then rubbed the pith ball on the skewer down the length of the friction rod and tested the skewer against the versorium - no effect. I did x100 strokes on the friction rod, then rubbed the pith down the length of the rod - again, no effect on the versorium. Why isn't the charge moving to the aluminum wrapped around the pith? Isn't aluminium a conductor?

04.21.2019 - Experimental Observations on Dielectricity

[62] Once again, no success with the dielectric pendulums: the charge on the rods and plastic straws don't seem to conduct to either the pith wrapped in aluminium, or the paper discs I cut out to run the experiment again. I'm seeing the 'A' and 'C' parts of the ACR are very clear, but the repulsion still doesn't seem to happen and the contact doesn't communicate any charge. I don't know if maybe there just isn't enough charge, but I'm still getting these null results.

[63] I did just run another experiment, this time with success! I setup another plastic versorium using a straw as the mobile, which was rubbed (on only one side) x40 strokes with the wool cloth. I then rubbed the ebonite rod with the same wool, also ~x40 strokes, and tested against the plastic versorium - clear repulsion! I then grabbed the glass friction rod, and did x40 strokes of wool on that. I tested this against the charged versorium - clear attraction! The ebonite friction rod and plastic mobile are charged with one type of dielectricity, which repel each other, and the glass rod is charged with another type, which attracts the mobile and which would attract the ebonite rod. So here we have it, "positive" and "negative" dielectricity! According to (S.3), the typical convention is to assign the ebonite rod (or plastic straw, or sealing wax, etc.) rubbed with acrylic (or wool) as "negatively charged," and so the glass rod rubbed with the acrylic is assigned as "positively charged."

[64] I now have an idea for a second setup: a plastic versorium and a dangling versorium (of the third type) with the thin glass rod suspended by a silk thread - with these two versoriums, I should be able to test the ebonite and glass friction rods to demonstrate positive and negative charges further and more clearly.

05.04.2019 - Experimental Observations on Dielectricity

[65] In this setup, I discharged a metal mobile by wrapping it in my hand, and I setup a metal versorium. I tested the glass friction rod against it - no charge. I tested the smaller two pieces of the thin glass rod against it as well - no charge. I also tested three pieces of plastic straw - no charge. I quickly rubbed a piece of computer paper against the ebonite friction rod to ensure the metal mobile could spin, and that I was getting correct results - a clear, strong result, good spin!

[66] Using silk thread, I suspended the two, uncharged pieces of thin glass rod from a vertical support. I brought the glass friction rod to these two pieces - no effect. I did x100 strokes of wool on the first hanging piece of glass, x100 strokes of silk on the second, and x100 strokes of wool on the glass friction rod - both pieces of thin glass were attracted by the friction rod...definitely not what I was expecting. Here's why: neither of the thin glass rods were charged by the initial friction, they had no effect on the metal versorium.

[67] After several attempts to properly charge the thin pieces of glass rod, test them against the versorium, and then re-suspend them, I had to give up this setup. In the first place, the little pieces seemed to be losing their charge very quickly. By the time I would get them suspended again, it seemed like there was nothing left. In the second place, I was unable to wrap the silk securely enough around the rod's center of gravity, and the glass just kept sliding out of the loop. I need to find another experimental setup. Maybe a re-imagining of the "magnetic boat" test, where instead of the magnets sitting in the "boat" in the basin of water, it's the charge pieces of thin glass rods.

[68] I redid another setup from the previous round of tests: two plastic straw versoriums, one rubbed until charged with a wool cloth, the other rubbed until charged with a silk cloth. I rubbed another loose piece of plastic straw with the wool cloth, and got a very strong repulsion against the versorium with a similar charge. I also got a very strong attraction against the versorium rubbed with the silk. These against demonstrates positive and negative dielectric charge. It also disproves DuFay's consideration of "vitreous" and "resinous" electricity, assuming that only certain types of materials (plastic, glass, sealing wax, etc.) can only produce one type of charge; we've just demonstrated that plastic can be charged to positive or negative given the type of material used to rub it. Another version of the setup would include a fourth piece of straw, also loose and charged by silk, to demonstrate the reverse effects.

[69] From these last two experiments, it's clear that the charge produced on the body is dependant on the combination of the material being rubbed, and the material doing the rubbing: for example, a piece of plastic can be charged to either "negative" with a piece of acrylic, or "positive" with a piece of silk; however, a piece of glass rubbed with acrylic will become positively charged, and will attract a piece of plastic rubbed with acrylic.

05.07.2019 - Experimental Observations on Dielectricity

[70] Today I decided to try and resolve the conflicts I'm having with the ACR mechanism experiments, and returned to experiment 4.12 from (S.2). I setup a plastic versorium with a piece of straw as the mobile, having one tip wrapped in aluminum tape. I setup a metal versorium as well, to test whether my apparatus are charged.

[71] I rubbed the ebonite friction rod with the wool cloth until charged, and tested it against the metal versorium - clear effect. I then tested it against the plastic versorium - no effect. After a bit more testing wither plastic straws, I found in the first place that this versorium isn't spinning well. The plastic keeps catching on the head of the needle, and won't spin properly. After loosening the needle upon the hole of the mobile, I did eventually get it to spin, but not well.

[72] After arranging the apparatus well enough to spin, I found that the aluminum tip was attracted to the ebonite friction rod, and would make contact with it. However, the aluminum still wasn't "immediately" repelled after contact: more often than not, it just clung to the rod, and unless I separated them the mobile would remain attached. In (S.2), it says that by moving the mobile up-and-down with the rod, the two would separate after some time: after a few rounds of doing this, I did start to get positive results! At least twice, after several attempts, I noticed that the mobile would spin away from the rod very forcefully, and sure enough if I got at least two or three clear instances of repulsion between the mobile and the friction rod.

[73] However, the aluminum tip never seemed to "hold on" to the charge: on the times I did get a clear, distinct repulsion after contact (and some jiggling of the rod), if I re-charged the rod with more strokes of the wool cloth, the mobile would not be repelled from the rod after I brought it back - it would be attracted again. It would attract, hold again until I got them to repel with some jiggling, and then would be repelled by the friction rod until the rod was re-charged. Then another attraction.

[74] So far, I can very clearly demonstrate (a) charge by friction (b) dielectric attraction between a charged object and a neutral object (c) mutual attraction between a charged and uncharged object (d) dielectric repulsion between two charged objects and (e) positive and negative dielectric charges, with like repelling like and dissimilar charges attracting each other. (S.2) makes these demonstrations very clear with the versoriums. However, it's with the ACR mechanism, and conduction in general, that the phenomena are still very unclear...
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby Michael Mozina » Thu May 09, 2019 11:05 am

FYi, thanks for sharing you work with us. I mean that. What you're doing is really cool. It's getting back the basics in terms of experimental science and that's been sorely missing in astronomy for nearly a century. Kudos.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Thu May 09, 2019 12:39 pm

I really appreciate you saying that! That's exactly what I'm doing, getting back to the origin of electrical science and re-covering all of the ground; starting back from the very beginning to confirm things for myself thru observation, and questioning what I can to see if I find anything interesting or surprising.

It's been wonderful so far! I've been curious about electricity since I was a kid: what is it? how does it make things happen? how does it exert a "force" on something in the real world? As a kid I never understood any of those things, I just knew that if I flipped a switch the lights would be on and I if I plugged in the right things I could play Nintendo. Like I said in my other post, the first time I started studying and engaging with electricity that was originally my project - back to the beginning - but I didn't approach it well: I tried to rush thru everything, I didn't commit myself to studying mathematics, I spent more time downloading papers and textbooks than I did building or experimenting with anything, started posting on forums just to get into arguments. It wasn't very productive, and I didn't really learn much of anything practical.

So this time, it feels really great to be able to put my hands to the tools and make shit happen. I feel like Faraday, armed with a bit of geometry and algebra, working from one experiment to another, trying to understand what's going on from a purely physical, mechanical stand-point. Faraday's idea was that the lines of dielectric and magnetic force were physically real, and exploring that idea is going to inform a lot of my studying.

Right now I hope that my notes at least are fun to read, even if they're just the basics. And more than anything I hope it makes folks want to get started themselves! A set of friction rods and a magnet set will cost you ~$50 together, and the textbook I'm working with is free to download. Down the road, I plan to share my experiences building Wimshurst machines, playing with circuits, constructing vacuum chambers and experimenting with discharge phenomena, all the good stuff!
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby Michael Mozina » Thu May 09, 2019 3:56 pm

BecomingTesla wrote:I really appreciate you saying that! That's exactly what I'm doing, getting back to the origin of electrical science and re-covering all of the ground; starting back from the very beginning to confirm things for myself thru observation, and questioning what I can to see if I find anything interesting or surprising.

It's been wonderful so far! I've been curious about electricity since I was a kid: what is it? how does it make things happen? how does it exert a "force" on something in the real world? As a kid I never understood any of those things, I just knew that if I flipped a switch the lights would be on and I if I plugged in the right things I could play Nintendo. Like I said in my other post, the first time I started studying and engaging with electricity that was originally my project - back to the beginning - but I didn't approach it well: I tried to rush thru everything, I didn't commit myself to studying mathematics, I spent more time downloading papers and textbooks than I did building or experimenting with anything, started posting on forums just to get into arguments. It wasn't very productive, and I didn't really learn much of anything practical.

So this time, it feels really great to be able to put my hands to the tools and make shit happen. I feel like Faraday, armed with a bit of geometry and algebra, working from one experiment to another, trying to understand what's going on from a purely physical, mechanical stand-point. Faraday's idea was that the lines of dielectric and magnetic force were physically real, and exploring that idea is going to inform a lot of my studying.

Right now I hope that my notes at least are fun to read, even if they're just the basics. And more than anything I hope it makes folks want to get started themselves! A set of friction rods and a magnet set will cost you ~$50 together, and the textbook I'm working with is free to download. Down the road, I plan to share my experiences building Wimshurst machines, playing with circuits, constructing vacuum chambers and experimenting with discharge phenomena, all the good stuff!


Your reference to Faraday is right on the money. He may not have understood the mathematical relationships, but he understood electromagnetism at the level of practical physical experimentation. That kind of "physical knowledge" is at least as important as the math.

Astronomers today don't really do any practical experimentation at all. Even their experiments with DM are epic failures, so they aren't learning anything practical or physical. Mostly what they do is whip up a few math formulas based on metaphysical "properties" they assign to various terms, and plug them into computer simulations. They have almost no practical hands on experience whatsoever. I doubt that most of them could wire up an extra electrical outlet in their house without killing themselves. :)
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby Zyxzevn » Thu May 09, 2019 7:07 pm

Michael Mozina wrote:Your reference to Faraday is right on the money. He may not have understood the mathematical relationships, but he understood electromagnetism at the level of practical physical experimentation. That kind of "physical knowledge" is at least as important as the math.


I notice that many scientists lost the connection with the actual experiments,
and replaced it with theoretical calculations. Especially when the experiments are difficult.

Instead they have started to use the experiments to justify the theory.
So they test just a few variables and see a success when one variable matches.
Then the experiment ends.

They do not test for other variables, or other conditions, or boundaries.
Unless they want to test another theory. They stop after the experiment,
because now their research is finished and papers need to be written.

This process, which they call "science", is of course increasing errors
whenever they happen. So slowly over time, we get untestable theories,
unrepeatable experiments, a lot of mysticism, and a lot of bullshitting.

That is all the result of the process, and not of the experiments.
So when you criticize the theory, the first reaction is that the experiment was
correct. But they don't see that the whole process (from theory to experiment)
is a failure and can never lead to a fully correct answer.

BecomingTesla wrote:That's exactly what I'm doing,
getting back to the origin of electrical science and re-covering all of the ground


For experimental physics of electromagnetism, I would advice to look at the lectures of
Walter Lewin:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtlJoXx ... OC2hk6Pc3j
He has tons of experiments, and also explains how we can understand them.

He also has some about Dielectric.
Maybe you can repeat some, like place a dielectric between 2 capacitor plates.
You will also see, that he uses all kinds of measuring instruments.
They are really essential in understanding what you are doing.
More ** from zyxzevn at: Paradigm change and C@
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby Michael Mozina » Fri May 10, 2019 8:51 am

Zyxzevn wrote:I notice that many scientists lost the connection with the actual experiments,
and replaced it with theoretical calculations. Especially when the experiments are difficult.

Instead they have started to use the experiments to justify the theory.
So they test just a few variables and see a success when one variable matches.
Then the experiment ends.


I agree. A great example of that behavior are their lab experiments with "magnetic reconnection". There aren't any experiments that systematically rule out induction as the real transfer mechanism between the magnetic field and particle acceleration. They all start with current and Alfven's double layer paper makes MRx redundant and irrelevant in all current carrying environments.

Their dark matter experiments have been a multi-billion dollar boondoggle, and they have nothing useful to show for it. Instead of admitting their models are a predictive failure, they "pretend" to have simply "constrained" their models. It's a never ending dark matter of the gaps claim.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Fri May 10, 2019 9:56 am

I don't really know what a lot of other scientists' practice looks like, I don't know very many of them and haven't spent any time with them. I know that my friend was convinced not to explore marine biology as a path for their degree because "they would almost definitely never spend time out in the ocean," so they opted for a mechanical engineering path instead so they can work in the private sector, which will definitely involve practical stuff.

What I do find interesting is that I've posted questions on /r/physics and /r/askphysics over at Reddit about this issues I'm having with the ACR mechanism and conduction by contact in these experiments, and so far, no one has responded to them. Maybe they're not interested, so no one cares to respond. But I also think they're pretty basic experiments, but no one will tell me what's going wrong either with my setup, my procedure, or my understanding of what the phenomena should be.

For experimental physics of electromagnetism, I would advice to look at the lectures of
Walter Lewin: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtlJoXxlSFE&list=PLyQSN7X0ro2314mKyUiOILaOC2hk6Pc3j He has tons of experiments, and also explains how we can understand them.


I actually really love his lectures! I just started with his 8.01 series on classical mechanics and undergraduate level physics. He's amazing to watch, and I agree that he's a great resource for anyone who's just beginning to study. Particularly because he includes so many experiments in his lectures that demonstrate the concepts, and that can be done with a small bit of investment at home.
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Re: Observational Notes on Magnetic & Dielectric Experiments

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Fri May 10, 2019 10:14 am

I agree. A great example of that behavior are their lab experiments with "magnetic reconnection". There aren't any experiments that systematically rule out induction as the real transfer mechanism between the magnetic field and particle acceleration. They all start with current and Alfven's double layer paper makes MRx redundant and irrelevant in all current carrying environments.


I don't understand the mathematics, or have enough (in fact, any lol) experience working with plasma and discharge phenomena, to be able to critique magnetic reconnection intelligently, so I won't do it until I can. I know magnetic reconnection depends on the concept of frozen-in magnetic field lines, and I understand that Alfven and others have critiqued the concept pretty heavily in its application mathematically in astrophysics. So at the very least, I try to maintain a healthy skepticism about it's use in cosmology until I can understand the math and I do have practical experience with discharge phenomena. That seems reasonable to me.

What I did really appreciate in reading Lui's paper was their perspective that MRx and circuit theory are two filters that can be applied to try and understand what's happening when we observe phenomena in space. I don't understand the resistance to viewing things that way: without being able to send instruments into the area to take measurements of the conditions in the field, there's an extremely limited amount of information that we can use to construct models for phenomena. The recent discovery that the amount of gamma rays radiating from the sun is actually higher than predicted by a factor of 7-20% comes to mind - we just don't know thru optical/radio telescopes alone, it's not enough. So maybe the conditions of the plasma fit the (very narrow) parameters that can make the frozen-in concept applicable, but maybe they're not. So apply both filters: MRx allows you to explore the deductive potential of the phenomena by using the mathematics, and circuit theory allows you to explore the phenomena inductively by approximating it in lab conditions.

They're both useful.
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