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Escape From Gravity

Do we live in a magical era at the same time as we are experiencing stressful days? I find that awe and wonder are very much alive, as paradigms (worldviews) are being stretched. Individuals say their expansion comes not only from spiritual experiences, but also from exposure to scientific breakthroughs.

When they see the impossible becoming possible, it seems, people are thinking more about the primal sea of energy that supports such marvels. Consider two small examples of paradigm-expanders, a tiny levitating toy in the USA and a perpetual-motion sculpture in Norway. And in the larger physical arena, according to visionary engineers, our collective worldview is expanding because we are closer to starship travel than most people believe.

Starships? Yes, anti-gravity technologies may literally get off the ground in the near future. Scientists are taking seriously the possibility of an inertialess drive for spaceships.


Inertia is the tendency of objects in motion to keep on moving in the same direction, and of a body at rest to remain on the sofa. When you are standing on a bus which starts with a jerk or stops suddenly, inertia is the force that throws you onto the floor.

Then there are the g-forces contorting faces of people in an accelerating rocket. Gravity and inertia must be overcome somehow if spacecraft are to perform tricks attributed to supposedly extraterrestrial objects in the sky. Viewers, including airline pilots, have described unidentified craft which make sudden sharp turns without reducing speed, or which accelerate from hovering to high speed. For occupants of a spacecraft to survive the sudden changes of location, inertia would have to be canceled or manipulated in and around the object. This would be in effect a controllable gravity field. The possibility of inertialess drive is nearer to us, because mainstream scientists now have a picture of what might be the cause of inertia.

A few years ago the respected physics journal, Physical Review, published a paper by B. Haisch, A. Rueda and H.E. Puthoff, with a theory about inertia. They point to the fact that what is popularly known as empty space is not empty; throughout the universe it is seething with zero-point quantum fluctuations of electromagnetic energy. The three physicists suggest that interaction with this zero-point field causes both inertia and gravity.

If we understand that interaction, can we go to the stars? Maybe understanding it is a first step. More recently, one of those three physicists, Dr. Hal Puthoff, elaborated. In the science magazine Ad Astra, he writes about the vacuum of space as an energy reservoir, with energy densities as powerful as nuclear energy or greater. If the zero-point field (ZPF) could be mined for practical use, it would, everywhere in all galaxies, supply energy for space propulsion.

How would it work? Puthoff gives clues, such as a phenomena called the Casimir Effect which pulls closely spaced smooth metal plates together. Another researcher, Robert Forward, has demonstrated how electrical energy could be taken from the electromagnetic fluctuations of the vacuum by manipulating this effect. Puthoff also cites a paper by his co-authors, Haisch of Lockheed and Rueda of California State University, along with Dr. Daniel Cole of IBM. They propose that the vast reaches of outer space constitute an ideal environment for ZPF acceleration of nuclei and thus provide a mechanism for powering up cosmic rays. He mentions a report published by the U.S. Air Force about the possibility of using a sub-cosmic ray approach to accelerate protons in a cryogenically cooled, collision-free vacuum trap and thus extract energy from the vacuum fluctuations...

What it boils down to, Puthoff says, is that scientific experiments indicate that human technology can alter vacuum fluctuations. This leads to the related idea that, in principle, we could also change gravitational and inertial masses.

Puthoff points out that accepted theories up until now only looked at the effects of gravity and inertia, instead of at the origins of these fundamental forces. He notes that the first scientist to hint that gravity and inertia might be rooted in the underlying vacuum fluctuations was the Russian dissident Andrei Sakharov, in a 1967 study.

Concluding his Ad Astra article with a quote from science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke saying that highly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Puthoff adds that fortunately such magic appears to be waiting in the wings of our deepening understanding of the quantum universe in which we live...


Arthur C. Clarke honors Sakharov, Haisch, Rueda and Puthoff in his latest novel, 3001: The Final Odyssey. Clarke names his fictional inertia-canceling space drive SHARP, an acronym made of the four scientists names, and 3001 cites their Physical Review paper as a landmark. In a commentary at the back of his novel, Clarke notes that controlling inertia could lead to interesting situations. For example, If you gave someone the gentlest touch, they would promptly disappear at thousands of kilometers an hour until they bounced off the other side of the room a fraction of a millisecond later.

It takes a sci-fi writer to present the extremes of what could be possible. On the other hand, institutional science is closer to near-future prospects for technological change. One institution, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is assembling for a breakthrough propulsion laboratory, a team sparked by Marc G. Millis. Millis, of the Space Propulsion Technical Division, NASA Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, last year wrote a technical paper about the new theories which suggest that gravitational and inertial forces are caused by interactions with the electromagnetic fluctuations of the vacuum.

So it now appears respectable to say that anti-gravity devices are possible, and that they could conceivably operate by manipulating the free energy in space, otherwise known as ether or aether.

There have also been studies suggesting experimental results for mass-altering effects and a theory suggesting a warp drive', Millis says. With the emergence of such new possibilities, it may be time to revisit the notion of creating the visionary space drive'. A space drive would propel the perfect starship, it could use the fundamental properties of matter and space-time in order to whisk itself to anywhere in space without having to carry and expel an explosive fuel.

Will sci-fi travel to our neighboring stars become a reality in our time? Breakthroughs in science are needed, say Puthoff, Millis and others, break-throughs such as a self-contained propulsion that needs no propellant. To chart a path toward such discoveries, Millis imagines different types of space drives. His hypothetical drives show the unsolved challenges that NASA must meet, and his paper breaks the problem up into research goals such as:

Discover a way to asymmetrically interact with the electromagnetic fluctuations of the vacuum. Develop a physics that describes inertia, gravity or the properties of space-time electromagnetically. This research could lead to using electromagnetic propulsion technology instead of burning fuel. Find out if negative mass exists or if its properties can by synthesized. If negative mass doesn't exist, then a goal would be to have another look at concepts of the ether or other physics principles.

The hypothetical field drives such as diametric drive, pitch drive, bias drive, disjunction drive and his collision sails are too technical for this article. The point, however, is that times have changed. Previously, prospects for creating a space drive seemed too far in the future to justify NASA's creating jobs in such research. But now we have a team approach to the space drive challenge.

The vision is clouded elsewhere, however, by academics fear of being associated with controversial concepts such as antigravity. Recently a scientist in Finland brought an unwanted flood of reporters to his university when his work, finding that spinning a super conducting ceramic under an electromagnetic field caused materials suspended above it to lose weight, was published in the London Times. The situation has parallels to the experience of Drs. Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann when they announced tabletop cold fusion in Utah in 1989 and were hounded out of the country.

The materials scientist in Finland, Eugene Podkletnov, formerly with Tampere University, blames the popular press for sensationalizing his work and therefore ruining his project. But he recently told magazine writer Rob Irving that in five or seven years the antigravity effect could have been used to help replace polluting jet airplanes.


During the last half of the 20th century, individuals working without institutional funding have also apparently made antigravity breakthroughs. David Hamel of Canada, the late T. Townsend Brown of the USA and John Searl of England are among them. Brown was university-educated and at times had one foot in the military's door, but Hamel and Searl are completely outside of the mainstream. The two have much in common.

For the first edition of Atlantis Rising, David Lewis wrote an article, Is Anti-Gravity in Your Future?, about the unpretentious John R.R. Searl. The British inventor appears to be a simple, honest man, gifted with an earnestness and a grasp of science that transcends his presentation...his grammar and speech are poor, his accent thick...no glib or polished spokesman which, ironically, adds to his credibility. Lewis remained prudently skeptical, but related the Searl anecdotes.

Searl invented what he called the Searl Effect Generator (SEG), which he claims has powered flying discs. Not little Frisbees, but models that could make a serious dent in any airplane they might accidentally ram. However, he didn't set out to make anything fly; he only wanted to produce power. In 1952, Searl is said to have built a fourteen-foot spinning SEG which created an exceptionally high voltage. Instead of braking its speed, the SEG accelerated, ionizing the air around it. It broke away from any connection with the ground and disappeared into the sky.

Remember, this allegedly happened in the 1950s. Why didn't university professors and other government-funded researchers investigate Searl's claims? Part of the answer is that they would have been ridiculed. Even as recently as twenty years ago, NASA, for example, was less open than it now is to the non-conventional ideas. In the 1970s a NASA consultant, the late Dr. Rolf Schaffranke, was forced to write under a pseudonym, Rho Sigma. The result was a small book titled Ether Technology. It told the story of Searl, along with that of T. Townsend Brown, whose experiments also pointed toward space flight without stress and without pollution.

A decade after Schaffranke's book came out, in 1989, he was in Einsiedeln, Switzerland, when about 900 engineers met for the Swiss Association for Free Energy conference. One advertised attraction which brought me to that conference was the chance to hear the legendary John Searl. In a packed side-room the night that Searl arrived, the beleaguered inventor, now in his sixties, was welcomed warmly. He responded with an emotional outpouring of his story of hardships and harassments including a disastrous fire which burned both his equipment and his own skin. He publicly vowed that nothing could stop him now. However, it is not easy to pick up the pieces of a tattered dream. Whether or not he is able to recreate his flying discs, perhaps others will build on Searl's inspiration.


Searl's story parallels David Hamel's in many details. Hamel is self-described as a simple man, a carpenter, who left his formal education behind after the fifth grade. For the past two decades he has built experimental devices which incorporate magnets, with unexpected results such as an experiment exploding through the roof of a garage workshop. Later Hamel built an eight-foot model of his machine, on top of a scaffolding in his front yard. When he set it into motion one night, it created a colorful aura of ionization around itself. To Hamel's dismay it rose into the air, soared higher and higher, and sped out of sight in the direction of the Pacific Ocean.

Instead of rejoicing about this proof that he could build a flying device, Hamel was dismayed that his investment in magnets had flown away. He is now building a large model out of polished granite and other heavy materials. When it is completed, Hamel will make certain that he has a large audience to watch the test run. His colleague on the West coast of Canada, electronics specialist Pierre Sinclaire (see photo), is equally determined to liberate us from outdated technologies. Sinclaire is selling a video for technicians who want to build the Hamel device, and will use the proceeds toward the cost of completing his own model by next year. After these new approaches to generating electricity and new transportation possibilities are proven, they intend to give their knowledge to the people of the world, and not merely to a select group.


Also intent on empowering people, marketers of an antigravity toy are taking the public-education route, and having fun while spreading awe and wonder. The Levitron is a top that achieves sustained levitation while powered only by permanent magnets. One marketer includes a flight kit with instructional video on the art of levitation. Mike Stewart of New Mexico tells me that more recent magical developments to educate people include a perpetuator which pulses the Levitron and keeps it going indefinitely. The whole understanding of magnetism is up for grabs, Stewart says.

Watching this top hovering above its base for five minutes, I see clean-energy and antigravity possibilities for our future expand before my eyes.

As for the question can we go to the stars?, perhaps we should phrase it as in the children's game, Mother, May I... Mother Earth, may we...? If there were an entity embodying Mom Earth, I think she would reply, You can go and play among the stars after you've cleaned up your mess here at home!

Mess, what mess? We could ask one of the scientists I met at conferences where he was a speaker in the 1980s (including the above-mentioned one in Einsiedeln, Switzerland). Adam Trombly founded an information network called Project Earth. Always he spoke eloquently about the state of the planet and provided abundant facts to back up his urgent messages.

Trombly's message is now on the Internet at www.projectearth.com.

He also invented a non-conventional generator to harness the zero-point fluctuations of the vacuum of space. I view his technology as yet another star on the horizon beckoning us towards an exciting future. By first learning how to work in harmony with nature on our own planet, in my opinion, we could prove that we're mature enough to handle these advanced technologies responsibly, and then, let's go!

Jeane Manning



References and Notes Jeane Manning is author of The Coming Energy Revolution, published by Avery of NY. The book has a resource list of New Energy groups and publications, and stories of inventors and what their work means for us all.

Thanks to Remy Chevalier for the Arthur C. Clarke 3001" info.