A Hieronymus machine is any of the patented radionics devices invented by electrical engineer Thomas Galen Hieronymus (21 November 1895 – 1988). Hieronymus received a U.S. Patent for his invention in 1949, which was described in the patent application title as a device for "detection of emanations from materials and measurement of the volumes thereof."
Radionics is a form of alternative medicine that claims disease can be diagnosed and treated by applying electromagnetic radiation (EMR), such as radio waves, to the body from an electrically powered device. It is similar to magnet therapy which also applies EMR to the body, but using a magnet that generates a static electromagnetic field.
Engineers, as practitioners of engineering, are professionals who invent, design, analyze, build, and test machines, systems, structures and materials to fulfill objectives and requirements while considering the limitations imposed by practicality, regulation, safety, and cost. The word engineer is derived from the Latin words ingeniare and ingenium ("cleverness"). The foundational qualifications of an engineer typically include a four-year bachelor's degree in an engineering discipline, or in some jurisdictions, a master's degree in an engineering discipline plus four to six years of peer-reviewed professional practice and passage of engineering board examinations.
Under United States law, a patent is a right granted to the inventor of a (1) process, machine, article of manufacture, or composition of matter, (2) that is new, useful, and non-obvious. A patent is the right to exclude others from using a new technology. Specifically, it is the right to exclude others from making, using, selling, offering for sale, importing, inducing others to infringe, and/or offering a product specially adapted for practice of the patent.
Skeptics and scientists consider the devices to be an example of pseudoscience and quackery.
Pseudoscience consists of statements, beliefs, or practices that are claimed to be both scientific and factual, but are incompatible with the scientific method. Pseudoscience is often characterized by contradictory, exaggerated or unfalsifiable claims; reliance on confirmation bias rather than rigorous attempts at refutation; lack of openness to evaluation by other experts; and absence of systematic practices when developing theories, and continued adherence long after they have been experimentally discredited. The term pseudoscience is considered pejorative because it suggests something is being presented as science inaccurately or even deceptively. Those described as practicing or advocating pseudoscience often dispute the characterization.
Quackery, often synonymous with health fraud, is the promotion of fraudulent or ignorant medical practices. A quack is a "fraudulent or ignorant pretender to medical skill" or "a person who pretends, professionally or publicly, to have skill, knowledge, qualification or credentials they do not possess; a charlatan or snake oil salesman". The term quack is a clipped form of the archaic term quacksalver, from Dutch: kwakzalver a "hawker of salve". In the Middle Ages the term quack meant "shouting". The quacksalvers sold their wares on the market shouting in a loud voice.
The original "Radiation Analyzer" consisted of a chamber to hold a sample of material, a glass prism to refract the eloptic emanations coming from it, and a copper wire probe on a rotating armature to adjust the angle formed by the prism and the probe. Supposedly, eloptic emanations are refracted by the prism at different angles depending on the material. The detected eloptic signals were fed to a three-stage vacuum tube RF amplifier and conducted to a flat touch plate surrounded by a copper wire bifilar coil.By stroking the touch plate an operator could supposedly feel a sensation of "tingling" or "stickiness" when the eloptic energy was detected. As such, a human nervous system is considered to be necessary to operate a Hieronymus Machine.
In electronics, a vacuum tube, an electron tube, or valve or, colloquially, a tube, is a device that controls electric current flow in a high vacuum between electrodes to which an electric potential difference has been applied.
A bifilar coil is an electromagnetic coil that contains two closely spaced, parallel windings. In engineering, the word bifilar describes wire which is made of two filaments or strands. It is commonly used to denote special types of winding wire for transformers. Wire can be purchased in bifilar form, usually as different colored enameled wire bonded together. For three strands, the term trifilar coil is used.
Hieronymus subsequently designed solid-state versions of his Analyzers, substituting germanium transistors for crystal prisms and tunable capacitors for the rotating armature. He also designed and built various specialized devices designed for specific functions, including analysis of living organisms and production of homeopathic remedies.The most well-known Hieronymus Machine is the Eloptic Medical Analyzer, which supposedly analyzes and transmits eloptic energy to diagnose and treat medical conditions in plants and animals.
Germanium is a chemical element with symbol Ge and atomic number 32. It is a lustrous, hard, grayish-white metalloid in the carbon group, chemically similar to its group neighbours silicon and tin. Pure germanium is a semiconductor with an appearance similar to elemental silicon. Like silicon, germanium naturally reacts and forms complexes with oxygen in nature.
A capacitor is a passive two-terminal electronic component that stores electrical energy in an electric field. The effect of a capacitor is known as capacitance. While some capacitance exists between any two electrical conductors in proximity in a circuit, a capacitor is a component designed to add capacitance to a circuit. The capacitor was originally known as a condenser or condensator. The original name is still widely used in many languages, but not commonly in English.
Homeopathy or homœopathy is a system of alternative medicine created in 1796 by Samuel Hahnemann, based on his doctrine of like cures like, a claim that a substance that causes the symptoms of a disease in healthy people would cure similar symptoms in sick people. Homeopathy is a pseudoscience – a belief that is incorrectly presented as scientific. Homeopathic preparations are not effective for treating any condition; large-scale studies have found homeopathy to be no more effective than a placebo, indicating that any positive effects that follow treatment are not due to the treatment itself but instead to factors such as normal recovery from illness, or regression toward the mean.
The theory of operation on which Hieronymus Machines are based is that all matter emits a kind of "radiation" that is not electromagnetic, but exhibits some of the characteristics of both light and electricity. The quality of this emanation is unique to every kind of matter, and therefore can be utilized for detection and analysis. Hieronymus coined the term "eloptic energy" to describe this radiation (from the words "electrical" and "optical".) All of his machines were designed to detect and manipulate this eloptic energy. Eloptic emanations have never been detected by instruments designed to measure electromagnetic energies, no other evidence of their existence have been produced, and there is no mathematical theory of an eloptic field, so the theory is considered pseudoscientific and is not accepted by science.
Electromagnetism is a branch of physics involving the study of the electromagnetic force, a type of physical interaction that occurs between electrically charged particles. The electromagnetic force usually exhibits electromagnetic fields such as electric fields, magnetic fields, and light, and is one of the four fundamental interactions in nature. The other three fundamental interactions are the strong interaction, the weak interaction, and gravitation. At high energy the weak force and electromagnetic force are unified as a single electroweak force.
The inventions of Hieronymus were championed by Astounding Science Fiction editor John W. Campbell in late 1950s and early 1960s editorials. A series of correspondences between the two men show that while Hieronymus was sure that someday his theories of eloptic energy would be proven and accepted by physical scientists, Campbell was convinced that the machines were based on psionics, related to the user's paranormal or ESP powers.
John Wood Campbell Jr. was an American science fiction writer and editor. He was editor of Astounding Science Fiction from late 1937 until his death and was part of the Golden Age of Science Fiction. Campbell wrote super-science space opera under his own name and stories under his primary pseudonym, Don A. Stuart. Campbell also used the pen names Karl Van Kampen and Arthur McCann. His novella Who Goes There? was adapted as the films The Thing from Another World (1951), The Thing (1982), and The Thing (2011).
Psionics is the study of paranormal phenomena in relation to the application of electronics. The term comes from psi (“psyche”) and the -onics from electronics (machine). It is closely related to the field of radionics. There is no scientific evidence that psionic abilities exist.
Paranormal events are purported phenomena described in popular culture, folk, and other non-scientific bodies of knowledge, whose existence within these contexts is described as beyond normal experience or scientific explanation.
As an example, Campbell believed one could create an eloptic receiver or similar device with the prisms and amplifiers represented by their cardboard or even schematic representations. Through the use of mental powers, such a machine would function as well as its "real" equivalent.In his autobiography, Hieronymus wrote, "I appreciated Mr. Campbell's interest in my work, but over the years since then, I have concluded that he set back the acceptance of my work at least a hundred years by his continual emphasis on what he termed the supernatural or 'magic' aspects of a mind-controlled device he built by drawing the schematic of my patented instrument with India ink. The energy flowed over the lines of this drawing because India ink is conducting, but it isn't worth a tinker's damn for serious research or actual treating."
The claims of Hieronymus about "eloptic" emanations were heavily criticized by the scientific community as having no basis in reality. His machines have been compared to the quack devices of Albert Abrams and have also been described as an example of pseudoscience.
An optical spectrometer is an instrument used to measure properties of light over a specific portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, typically used in spectroscopic analysis to identify materials. The variable measured is most often the light's intensity but could also, for instance, be the polarization state. The independent variable is usually the wavelength of the light or a unit directly proportional to the photon energy, such as reciprocal centimeters or electron volts, which has a reciprocal relationship to wavelength.
A spectrum is a condition that is not limited to a specific set of values but can vary, without steps, across a continuum. The word was first used scientifically in optics to describe the rainbow of colors in visible light after passing through a prism. As scientific understanding of light advanced, it came to apply to the entire electromagnetic spectrum.
Perpetual motion is motion of bodies that continues indefinitely. A perpetual motion machine is a hypothetical machine that can do work indefinitely without an energy source. This kind of machine is impossible, as it would violate the first or second law of thermodynamics.
"Blowups Happen" is a science fiction short story by American writer Robert A. Heinlein. It is one of two stories in which Heinlein, using only public knowledge of nuclear fission, anticipated the actual development of nuclear technology a few years later. The other story is "Solution Unsatisfactory", which is concerned with a nuclear weapon, although it is only a radiological "dirty bomb", not a nuclear explosive device.
The history of perpetual motion machines dates at least back to the Middle Ages. For millennia, it was not clear whether perpetual motion devices were possible or not, but modern theories of thermodynamics have shown that they are impossible. Despite this, many attempts have been made to construct such machines, continuing into modern times. Modern designers and proponents sometimes use other terms, such as "overunity", to describe their inventions.
The Dean drive was a device created and promoted by inventor Norman Lorimer Dean (1902–1972) that he claimed to be a reactionless drive. Dean claimed that his device was able to generate a uni-directional force in free space, in violation of Newton's third law of motion from classical physics. His claims generated notoriety because, if true, such a device would have had enormous applications, completely changing human transport, engineering, space travel and more. Dean made several controlled private demonstrations of a number of different devices, however no working models were ever demonstrated publicly or subjected to independent analysis and Dean never presented any rigorous theoretical basis for their operation. Analysts conclude that the motion seen in Dean's device demonstrations was likely reliant on asymmetrical frictional resistance between the device and the surface on which the device was set, resulting in the device moving in one direction when in operation, driven by the vibrations of the apparatus.
The water fuel cell is a technical design of a "perpetual motion machine" created by American Stanley Allen Meyer. Meyer claimed that an automobile retrofitted with the device could use water as fuel instead of gasoline. Meyer's claims about his "Water Fuel Cell" and the car that it powered were found to be fraudulent by an Ohio court in 1996.
Newman's Energy Machine was a DC motor which the inventor, Joseph Newman, claimed to produce mechanical power exceeding the electrical power being supplied to it. In 1979, Newman attempted to patent the device, but was rejected by the United States Patent Office as being a perpetual motion machine. When the rejection was later appealed, the United States district court requested that Newman's machine be tested by the National Bureau of Standards (NBS). The NBS concluded in June 1986 that output power was not greater than the input. Thus, the patent was again denied. The scientific community has rejected Newman's ideas about electricity and magnetism as pseudoscientific and his claims as false.
George Walter de la Warr was born in the Northern England, and in later life became a civil engineer in the pay of Oxfordshire County Council. In 1953 he resigned from this post to work on the controversial field of radionics, in which he was a pioneer. His devices were denounced by medical experts.
Georges Lakhovsky was a Belarusian-French engineer, scientist, author and inventor. His controversial medical treatment invention, the Multiple Wave Oscillator, is described as having been used by him in the treatment of cancer.
A torsion field is a feature of pseudoscientific proposals that the quantum spin of particles can be used to cause emanations to carry information through vacuum orders of magnitude faster than the speed of light. This theory is the basis of a number of unfounded claims and scams.
The Mightiest Machine is a science fiction novel by American writer John W. Campbell, Jr. The novel was originally serialized in 5 parts in Astounding Stories magazine from December 1934 to April 1935, and was published in book form in 1947 by The Hadley Publishing Co. in an edition of 1,200 copies. Campbell was a leading figure in the Golden Age of Science Fiction.
Analog Science Fiction and Fact is an American science fiction magazine published under various titles since 1930. Originally titled Astounding Stories of Super-Science, the first issue was dated January 1930, published by William Clayton, and edited by Harry Bates. Clayton went bankrupt in 1933 and the magazine was sold to Street & Smith. The new editor was F. Orlin Tremaine, who soon made Astounding the leading magazine in the nascent pulp science fiction field, publishing well-regarded stories such as Jack Williamson's Legion of Space and John W. Campbell's "Twilight". At the end of 1937, Campbell took over editorial duties under Tremaine's supervision, and the following year Tremaine was let go, giving Campbell more independence. Over the next few years Campbell published many stories that became classics in the field, including Isaac Asimov's Foundation series, A.E. van Vogt's Slan, and several novels and stories by Robert A. Heinlein. The period beginning with Campbell's editorship is often referred to as the Golden Age of Science Fiction.
An infrared gas analyzer measures trace gases by determining the absorption of an emitted infrared light source through a certain air sample. Trace gases found in the Earth's atmosphere get excited under specific wavelengths found in the infrared range. The concept behind the technology can be understood as testing how much of the light is absorbed by the air. Different molecules in the air absorb different frequencies of light. Air with lots of a certain gas will absorb more of a certain frequency, allowing the sensor to report a high concentration of the corresponding molecule.
The Silver Crown is a children's science-fiction book by Robert C. O'Brien. Published in 1968, it was his first novel.
Desiré D. Dubounet is an American alternative medicine quack currently living in Budapest. Dubounet developed the pseudoscientific Electro Physiological Feedback Xrroid, an energy medicine device that is considered to be dangerous to health and has been described as a scam.