Friday, 1 April 2016

Could the Nobel Prize go to a mineral processor for the first time

The hot topic in physics at the moment is gravitational waves, ripples in the curvature of spacetime generated by gravitational interactions and predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916 on the basis of his theory of general relativity. They were first oberved in February, and surely a Nobel Prize is imminent for the collaborative teams that made the discovery.
And could it be that a future Nobel Prize might wing its way to Cornwall, and to Prof. Richard Head's ever-resourceful team at the Bodmin Institute. Prof. Head has just announced that a small team, led by Dr. Eric McToo, has shown that a rapidly spinning flywheel can distort spacetime and effectively slow time down in its near vicinity.
Ever sceptical, I decided to test this out myself, at the local gym using an exercise bike, which of course is driven via a flywheel. I set the time for a 20 minute session and began pedalling away, but did not look at the time on the machine. After what I estimated to be 20 minutes I stopped pedalling and was astounded to see that only 15 minutes had elapsed, proof indeed of a distortion in the spacetime continuum. I have also tested this on a rowing machine, and can say categorically that such exercise equipment definitely does slow down time.
But the real challenge now lies ahead, the quest to speed up time in a selected place. This would have profound consequences for all the process industries by enhancing the kinetics of physical and chemical reactions and Dr. McToo has asked me to pass on any suggestions to how this might be achieved.

14 comments:

  1. The space time continuum? Great Scott Marty!

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  2. Peter Flitcroft1 April 2016 at 09:13

    Oh...I don't know... (shaking head).......

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  3. Every year I look forward to what Dr Head and his team have been researching for the year, and this is equally as exciting.

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    1. Yes, they are truly inspiring

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    2. mineral processors are dealing with real Science, so it is possible. Unfortunately I don't see such an opportunity for mining engineers.

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  4. Very interesting and definitely shows that "thinking out of box" is the need of time for mineral industry .
    Rao,T.C.

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  5. you said something about enhancing the kinetics, do you mean like the flywheel slows space time so can the rotor in the flotation machine ? and thus enhancing the flotation kinetics.

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    1. Maybe it would be worth trying surrounding a flotation machine with flywheels, and try running them at differing speeds and directions to see if kinetics improved
      Max Poling, Michigan, USA

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  6. It is exciting. If a revolutionary technology can be developed to significantly improve the processing efficiency and reduce the energy and waste, it should be nominated for a Nobel Prize ( Physics or Chemistry?). It will also be good to think whether the research which has already been awarded a Nobel Prize can be applied to mineral processing?
    Xumeng Chen, University of Queensland, Australia

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  7. Relativity is always a very exciting theme indeed. However, there should be a phenomenon behind the sensations. The distortion in spacetime would happens in a so near vicinity that may be not noticeable in few mm or cm. Moreover, the time slowing rate reported (25%) is far too higher than my expectations for relativity. I believe you reported the feeling of time slowing, that is higher the heavier are your exercises...

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  8. This douns a bit like voodoo science or Brian Lara's too wide bat also measured on 1 April - incidentally my late mother's birthday as well

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  9. Great April Fool's Day story, Barry. All that an April 1st posting should be- starts off with a serious introduction and then rapidly becomes more and more ludicrous. What I find most amusing is how many professional people apparently took it seriously- you have to wonder sometimes! Anyway, I look forward to hearing more of Richard Head's research team next year, particularly the redoubtable Eric McToo (Twitter Emc2 ?).
    Alan Glover, Coventry, UK

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  10. Vadim Bondarenko8 April 2016 at 08:28

    Excellent April Fish! Congratulations!

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  11. I fell 100% on this story! Very convincing indeed Barry... =D

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