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Professor Hibbert's Perpetual Motion Pages

I have constructed these pages to:

  • Provide a source for the Australian Skeptics "What we are skeptical of" entry on perpetual motion
  • Give a brief statement of the Laws of Thermodynamics
  • Through feedback amass more examples of unusual chemical claims

The page draws from and augments an article published in the Skeptic, the journal of the Australian Skeptics Inc. {"A Chemical Free Lunch" , Vol 14 (1) 36-37 (1994)}.

What do we mean by "Perpetual Motion"?

In the sense of energy we refer to a perpetual motion machine as any putative device that violates the First Law of Thermodynamics or the Second Law of Thermodynamics

We say 'putative' because so far no device, invention, or scheme has ever been shown to violate these laws. Indeed a despairing US patent office has been forced to issue the following notice to stem the tide of nonsense inventions:

The views of the Patent Office are in accord with those scientists who have investigated the subject and are to the effect that such devices are physical impossibilities. The position of the Office can only be rebutted by a working model. ... The Office hesitates to accept fees from applicants who believe they have discovered Perpetual Motion, and deems it only fair to give such applicants a word of warning that fees cannot be recovered after the case has been considered by the Examiner.

Where to go from here

The Skeptic Article

The First Law

First Law Violators

The Second Law

Second Law Violators

See also:

The best site I have come across is by H. P. Gramatke at http://www.hp-gramatke.net/perpetuum/frame1.htm. You can read about some of the law violators in more detail, with pictures and animations.

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