MadSci Network: Physics

Re: Would my 'gravitron' work?

Date: Thu Oct 28 17:16:16 1999
Posted By: Layne Johnson, Undergraduate
Area of science: Physics
ID: 941070407.Ph

Hello, Nathan.

If a ball was spinning fast enough, the equator of the ball could get close 
to the speed of light.  The tremendous speed would cause a curvature of the 
spacetime continuum.  It would decrease in volume, slow down in time, and 
increase in weight.  In theory, such an object would weigh more than it 
would at rest.  However, no substance could withstand the centrifugal force 
acting upon it as it accelerated its spin.

A similar idea to yours has been proven already.  In particle accelerators, 
where electrons are pushed at speeds greater than 99.9% of light speed, the 
electrons weigh about 40 times their resting weight.  The difference 
between this phenomenon and your gravitron theory is that one velocity is 
lineal, the other is spinning.  A lineal moving object experiences the 
curvature of spacetime uniformly.  A spinning object's axis isn't moving 
through space at all, and would not experience the curvature of spacetime 
like the equator would.

So in theory, your gravitron idea is sound.  But the energy necessary to 
generate the speed, the weakness of the object, and the non-uniform speed 
of different parts of a spinning object make such an idea unworkable.  In 
time, the energy may become available, and a material capable of 
withstanding the force may be found.  Until then, particle accelerators are 
the only machines that could be called "gravitrons".

Layne Johnson

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