Controlling ions

One area of research into how an invisible force field may be created has involved ions creating what Peter Thompson calls a ‘Charged Sheath Vortex’. To this end we have been looking at any experiments and activities that may produce and control ions. Again, there is uncertainty as to how and why the results of experiments are occurring and some serious doubts about us being able to re-create it as something the public can actually walk into safely.

The charged sheath vortex to which Peter is referring was the industrial by-product process at a polypropylene plant. He was trying to figure out why it was happening and posted this in 2001 on the ESD Journal website:

“EUREKA - I have found it. I have been studying the implications of charge being moved at high speeds. The math is very complex so it is hard to predict what sort of experimental setup is required to demonstrate different aspects of the phenomenon. But I think your members have practical experience of this phenomena, and my theory may provide insight into practical ways of predicting and preventing problems.”

He then goes on to consider some basic physics, often overlooked because they sit on adjoining fields of research.

“When you consider two charged particles with the same charge, when stationary they will repel each other, but when moving in parallel each moving charge creates a circular magnetic field round itself that results in mutual attraction. This is normally demonstrated in the attraction between two wires where negative charge is moving in parallel, but applies equally to charge moving in a paper or plastic film on a production line or in a moving charged dust cloud, or a thunder storm.

The forces created by an electrical current in a wire are produced in proportion to the speed of electrons through a wire. Because of collisions and random movements of electrons in the wire, the overall speed of the electrons, or drift speed is quite slow. hyperphysics (but the density is high). A 1 volt potential in a pure copper wire will produce a drift speed of 0.0043m/s This is less than half a centimeter in a second. One definition of the amp and force is based on this. 1 amp produces a force of 2*10^-7 Newtons per metre of wire when the parallel wires are 1 meter apart. By contrast production line speeds for paper and plastic film can be over 100 times faster and air flow in a tornado can exceed 1000 m/s.

The effect of moving charge are often forgotten about because electrostatics and electric current are often taught separately in schools

The effects of moving single charge become most dramatic when a charged vortex is created. Charged particles in front of or behind another particle will experience strong forces of repulsion, but the charged particles moving in parallel are very strongly attracted together! The net result is to form a charged sheath vortex, where a sheath of particles rotates about an open core. The sheath cannot contract into the core because of repulsion round the core, and the opposite sides flowing in opposite directions repel, Neither can it expand outwards from the sheath because of the attraction between particles moving in parallel. The result is a very tightly bound sheath of particles and air molecules. If new charged particles are being delivered to this rotating sheath vortex they will be bound into the sheath with the build up of huge electrical potential that doesn't discharge because of the forces of attraction generated by the movement of charged particles.

The 3M polypropylene plant, he states is “the ideal situation for setting up a charged sheath vortex. The high speed web is delivering a constant supply of the same charge to the tent created by the web flowing up and over the tensioning rollers. Within this tent, friction with the moving film causes the air to start rotating and initially this air will be given the same charge as the film. The rotating charged air will now start to create the attractive forces between particles moving in parallel and will draw in more charge from the moving plastic web. This process will continue and will produce a charged vortex sheath spinning in the middle of the tent. This would normally be invisible and could also feel like a solid wall with a well-defined edge (and a soft centre). You certainly wouldn't push it out of the way!”

We’ve measured the gallery and grounds up, and don’t think we have the physical space to actually make a large force field in this way. We have however been looking at other processes and experiments that produce similar results.

Many thanks to Peter Thompson.