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Topics - Solarwind

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Flat Earth General / Zetetic methods
« on: November 19, 2021, 11:15:10 AM »
As I understand it, the concept of zeteticism is based around relying on ones own senses to gather evidence. Since the Sun and Moon appear to us to be the same size in the sky, does that mean then that those who follow such zetetic methods would therefore say that the Sun and Moon are actually the same size purely because of that?

Zeteticism differs from the usual scientific method in that using zeteticism one bases his conclusions on experimentation and observation rather than on an initial theory that is to be proved or disproved. A zetetic forms the question then immediately sets to work making observations and performing experiments to answer that question, rather than speculating on what the answer might be then testing that out.

Does all this mean then that zeteticism does not take any account of distance since you cannot always determine distance from observation alone?

Flat Earth Debate / Telescope tracking
« on: October 23, 2021, 03:33:18 PM »
Couldn't help but notice this thread on another FE website about the tracking performance of equatorial telescopes.

Once again Tom completely misses the point being made (either purposely or simply through ignorance, I'm not sure) and goes into great detail instead about autoguiding which has nothing to do with the point the OP was making.

Contrary to what Tom is implying, equatorial mounts CAN track the sky accurately for hours. For visual observing at least. The errors Tom is talking about here refers to autoguiding which is a necessary feature when doing long term imaging. Even very slight errors in polar alignment can cause tracking errors. But that is a human thing and nothing to do with the mount itself or indeed the sky.  Also mount drive systems are mechanical and try as they do, no engineers so far have managed to make a perfect mount in terms of the tracking performance. Belt drive systems have recently started replacing the traditional worm/wheel drive systems and these improve tracking performance considerably.

Autoguiding is a technique that astroimagers use to correct these very small tracking errors over time but these really are very small and limited to a few arc seconds at most. For visual observing you don't need to guide the mount.

For example the 24" (600mm) F6.5 Planewave CDK (Classic Dall-Kirkham) telescope has a focal length of just short of 4m (3.9m = 600mm x F6.5). To achieve acceptable unguided exposures of 5 minutes for that sort of focal length is very, very good. I have a 10" F8 (focal length = 2m) and I would not risk unguided tracking of 5 minutes when imaging even though I have a high end mount.

For imaging tracking performance needs to be absolutely spot on throughout the total exposure time. During a normal imaging run you would run off multiple 5 minute exposures across different filters and so autoguiding is essential if you want to get nice round stars in your final image which can be 60 hours or more in total over several nights. It is quite easy to use a reference image that has been plate solved in order to aim the telescope to exactly the same point on the sky over several nights. 

So Tom, I don't know if you are deliberately trying to mislead people into thinking that equatorial mounts can't track the stars very accurately even over just a few minutes by providing links to information about guiding and guiding errors (completely separate issue) but you sure don't fool me.

How then do you explain long term tracking with equatorial mounts if the Earth is flat as you continue to believe.  Especially in the southern hemisphere? Knowing as I do about equatorial mounts I just can't think of the answer. But then I'm not a flat Earth believer and never will be.

Flat Earth Debate / Eratosthenes
« on: September 22, 2021, 03:41:36 PM »
It seems to be a popular claim among flat Earth believers that when Eratosthenes carried out his shadow experiment he was actually aiming to work out the diameter of the Earth rather than the circumference. However outside of FE websites all accounts of Eratosthenes talk about the circumference of the Earth rather than the diameter. Many describing in detail modern re-creations of this experiment by lots of different groups, including a worldwide network of school kids.

So where then do flat Earthers get their evidence from to support this claim of theirs that it was all about finding the diameter of the Earth rather than the circumference? The implication being that it is all the other websites that have actually got it wrong about this particular experiment?

Obviously if the claim of flat Earthers that the Earth is flat really was true then that would immediately render the popular account of Eratosthenes experiment as meaningless. So presumably flat Earthers need to 're-invent' the purpose and aims of the experiment simply in order to make it 'compatible' with their beliefs.

Flat Earth General / Upside down Moon
« on: March 13, 2021, 09:34:00 AM »
I live at a mid northerly latitude but I also have a family member who lives in South Africa.  Recently during night of the full Moon I was on the phone to him. We were both looking at the Moon through binoculars and I asked him if he could see a prominent rayed crater called Tycho in the lower half (southern hemisphere) of the Moon.

He replied yes he could see the crater but for him it was on the upper half of the Moons visible disk.  We soon realised that he was looking at the Moon 'upside down' compared to my view.  Since we were both using 12x50 binoculars we also worked out that the Moons disk looked the same size despite us both being a few thousand miles from each other.

How can this be if the Earth is flat?

Flat Earth General / Grazing occultations
« on: February 12, 2021, 12:16:42 PM »
It seems to be a belief held among some flat Earthers that the Moon (and Sun) are not solid bodies but some kind of reflected, Earth based hologram.  An interesting hypothesis to say the least!

If that were true and the Moon that we see is just some kind of reflection off a non-existent reflective surface then can those same flat Earth people explain how I can see and image the planets Jupiter and Saturn very clearly and very obviously passing behind and through mountains and valleys on the limb of the Moons disk at the the time of a grazing occultation?   

Flat Earth General / Flat Earth and the celestial sphere
« on: November 29, 2020, 12:47:51 PM »
It is an observable fact that there are two fixed points on the sky around which all the stars appear to rotate.  These points (the celestial poles) are located 180 degrees apart, creating the illusion that the sky is a huge sphere surrounding the Earth.

Polaris is located 40' from the actual point of rotation in the north and so traces out a circle on the sky which is 80' across or just over 2 Moon diameters. Likewise Sigma Octantis, the brightest star nearest to the south celestial pole is located at a distance of 105' or just under 2d from the point of rotation in the south.

In the north the stars rotate around the NCP anticlockwise while in the south they rotate clockwise.  If you visualise the Earth as a sphere with an axis that connects points on the surface that coincide with the NP and SP such that they point almost directly at Polaris and Sigma Octantis respectively this can account for what we observe directly.

How can this be replicated if you model the Earth as flat. In which case there can be no point of rotation in the south because the south 'pole' becomes the circumference of a circle and not a point. That means the south celestial 'pole' would also be a large circle and not a point of rotation.

Flat Earth Debate / Taken from the FE FAQ as 'evidence'
« on: November 19, 2020, 03:39:09 PM »
The world looks flat, the bottoms of clouds are flat, the movement of the sun; these are all examples of your senses telling you that we do not live on a spherical heliocentric world. This is using what's called an empiricist approach, or an approach that relies on information from your senses.

Why is it that FE insist that the Earth looking flat from surface level is evidence that the Earth is flat.?  And you are not seriously suggesting that the flat bottoms of cumulus clouds is also evidence that the Earth is flat are you? The flat bottoms of cumulus clouds is easily explainable through basic meteorology and has nothing to do with the shape of the Earth.

The movement of the Sun tells us that we don't live on a spherical, heliocentric world?  Really?  Aren't you are simply taking one possible interpretation of various observations and concluding from those that the Earth is flat? Without considering the other possibilities that those same observations could indicate?

Flat Earth Debate / Scientific evidence that the Earth is flat
« on: November 08, 2020, 04:29:41 AM »
As the title says.  What is the scientific (as opposed to politically or losely religiously motivated) evidence that the Earth really is flat? 

It is accepted that not all the available evidence can be obtained by a single individual so please include any links to experiments that others have carried out and the results they obtained which support the hypothesis that the Earth is anything else but an oblate spheroid.

There seem to be various schools of thought about how the sky works in FE models.  Some seem to favour a dome, the base of which is the flat surface of the Earth. 

Equatorial mounts for telescopes work by being aligned with the Earths polar axis.  So in the north we align the polar axis of the mount so it points to the NCP (North Celestial Pole) while south of the equator we align them, not surprisingly with the SCP.  Both are fixed points on the sky around which all the stars rotate.  Anti-clockwise in the north, clockwise in the south. This works well with what astronomers call the celestial sphere.  Not celestial dome.  Celestial sphere.  There is no physical sphere of course.  It is just a convenient way of visualising the sky where the stars are all very distant.  All stars appear as points from Earth so talking in terms of a diameter has no meaning. The Earth represents the centre point of this 'sphere' and so from our vantage point we can look outwards in any direction we please. However from the NP you can never see any part of the southern sky and from the SP you can never see any part of the northern sky.  From the equator you can see all of the sky through the course of one year.

Both amateur and professional astronomers use equatorial mounts perfectly well all over the world. If the Earth is flat though, how can equatorial mounts work in the southern hemisphere?  Indeed how can they work in the north as well?  Other than at the North Pole? 

Flat Earth General / Accepting what we are told
« on: October 29, 2020, 04:45:10 PM »
It is common for FEers to discredit or dismiss mainstream science because we are being asked to 'accept what we are told'.  But it seems FE Wiki is equally guilty of this if not more so.  There are several statements contained in it which are simple statements and even just claims without any attempt to provide supporting evidence that they are true.   Are we simply expected to accept them as being true? For example:

The sun is a sphere. It has a diameter of 32 miles and is located approximately 3000 miles above the surface of the earth.

Vague and no supporting evidence.

The radius of the sun's orbit around the Earth's axis symmetry varies throughout the year, being smallest when summer is in the northern annulus and largest when it is summer in the southern annulus.

Vague and no supporting evidence.

If the planets are round, why isn't the earth?    A. The earth is not a planet.

Vague. What is the Earth then if it isn't a planet?

Q. How big are the planets in the FE model?  A. Pretty small.


As far as the Lunar Eclipse goes, there is no evidence that the shadow which manifests on the moon during a Lunar Eclipse originates from the earth at all.

Vague and no supporting evidence.

In response to why the southern constellations rise as the observer travels southward; that is to be expected with the stars being only about 3100 miles above the surface of the earth.

Statement, no evidence.

So the FE Wiki is full of statements without any supporting evidence that can be used to verify these claims. In other words FE Wiki is simply asking us to accept what we are told.  More so than mainstream science which can actually provide supporting evidence.  How do you (the FE community) expect to present a serious challenge to mainstream science (if that's what your intention is) if you cannot support your claims with the simplest of evidence?

The real reason why FEers discredit mainstream science is possibly because mainstream science can show quite easily that none of the above claims are even remotely true.

Flat Earth Debate / Lunar eclipses and the FE Wiki
« on: October 28, 2020, 04:43:28 PM »
Reading through the Wiki page about lunar eclipses, the account given about how lunar eclipses are supposed to happen can only be described as farcical.  Talk about overcomplicating something which is explained perfectly clearly and logically by RE just to make it 'fit in' with FE belief.  As you read about the 'shadow object' anyone of logical sane mind will be screaming to themselves YES it is called EARTH! 

The wording doesn't make any sense whatsoever so is there a diagram anywhere to show how the FE version is supposed to work?

It is estimated that the Shadow Object is around five to ten miles in diameter.
  How exactly is it estimated?

There is also a possibility that the Shadow Object is a known celestial body which orbits the sun
  Perfect description of Earth.  It is definitely a known celestial body AND it orbits the Sun!

This satellite is called the Shadow Object. Its orbital plane is tilted at an angle of about 510' to the sun's orbital plane, making eclipses possible only when the three bodies (Sun, Object, and Moon) are aligned and when the moon is crossing the sun's orbital plane
  Replace 'object' in bold in brackets with the word Earth and you get an almost perfect description of how lunar eclipses happen according to RE.  The only error here is that it is the Moons orbit which is inclined at 510' to the Earths orbital plane.  Good try though.

The Lunar Eclipse is red because the light of the sun is shining through the edges of the Shadow Object
  This is correct - except for one small detail.  Replace 'shadow object' with 'Earth and this sentence is completely true.  This is where the sunlight shines through the atomsphere.

Total lunar eclipses come in clusters. There can be two or three during a period of a year or a year and a half, followed by a lull of two or three years before another round begins.
  Ok here's a list of all the lunar eclipses during the 21st century.  Do you see a 'lull of two or three years' at any point?  Otherwise yes there are two or three lunar eclipses each year visible somewhere in the world.,%20%208.91%20%209%20more%20rows%20

Flat Earth General / Eratosthenes on diameter
« on: October 26, 2020, 04:45:29 PM »
It is the FE claim that Eratosthenes was actually measuring the diameter of the Earth and not the circumference:

It's a common misconception that Eratosthenes was measuring the circumference of the Round Earth in his shadow experiment. Eratosthenes had simply assumed that the earth was a sphere in his experiment, based on the work of Aristotle. He was actually measuring the diameter of the Flat Earth

Ok if it really is such a common misconception as the Wiki says it is then I invite any flat Earther to find me a link to another, non-flat Earth related website which explicitly backs up this claim. 

Flat Earth Debate / Distance to the Sun
« on: October 17, 2020, 03:09:15 PM »
The FW Wiki describes the distance to the Sun as follows:

On March 21-22 the sun is directly overhead at the equator and appears 45 degrees above the horizon at 45 degrees north and south latitude. As the angle of sun above the earth at the equator is 90 degrees while it is 45 degrees at 45 degrees north or south latitude, it follows that the angle at the sun between the vertical from the horizon and the line from the observers at 45 degrees north and south must also be 45 degrees. The result is two right angled triangles with legs of equal length. The distance between the equator and the points at 45 degrees north or south is approximately 3,000 miles. Ergo, the sun would be an equal distance above the equator.

This would hold true geometrically if the points on the Earths surface at 45 degrees north and south and the equator lay on a straight line.  But they don't.

The RE measured circumference of the Earth is 24,875 miles.  A quarter of that is 6,218 miles which is therefore the distance between the north/south pole and the equator.  The distance between the equator and 45 degrees north or south on a globe Earth is therefore 3,109 miles.

We have a choice of methods to available to us to determine the distance of the Moon and Venus for example and from those we can confirm the calculated distance of the Sun quoted by RE. 

So the Wiki entry should read ' If the Earth was flat then the distance to the Sun would only be approximately 3000 miles'. But since we know the true distance of the Sun is in the order of 31,000 times that distance that shows that the Earth is not flat.  So the Wiki explanation is based on a false base assumption (that the Earth is flat) and therefore makes something appear to be true in order to suit a particular belief.

Flat Earth General / Lunar Eclipses
« on: October 10, 2020, 04:08:56 PM »
To quote from the FE Wiki:

As far as the Lunar Eclipse goes, there is no evidence that the shadow which manifests on the moon during a Lunar Eclipse originates from the earth at all. That shadow could come from any celestial body intersecting the light between the sun and moon.

First sentence:
Actually there is direct and obvious evidence. What is the phase of the Moon whenever there is a lunar eclipse?  Answer full Moon.  Where is the Moon on the sky in relation to the Sun whenever the Moon is full?  Answer directly opposite.  We can check this by looking at the data for the next full Moon which occurs on the 31st October.  On that day the Moons RA coordinates will be 2h 46m 25s.  The Suns RA coordinates on the same day will be 14h 25m 24s.  So that is a 12 hour difference in RA and there are 15 degrees of sky for every 1 hour of RA.  15 x 12 = 180 degrees.

Now where is the Earths shadow always pointing in the sky?  Answer directly opposite the Sun in the sky.  In fact the centre line of the Earths shadow on the sky is the anti-solar point.  As the Sun sets in the west, the Earths shadow rises (normally invisibly of course) in the east.

So the shadow of the Earth on the night of the full Moon is always pointing in the exact same direction as where we see the full moon.  If it isn't the shadow of the Earth crossing the Moon when we see a lunar eclipse it must be the shadow of something else then.  Something which lies on the same line and between the Earth and the Moon. Something which is big enough to cast a shadow on the Moon which covers its visible disk completely.  The Moons disk on the sky is half a degree.  If that object was in a direct line with the Earth and the Moon (otherwise it wouldn't cast a shadow on the Moon) then Sunlight would be reflected off its opposite, Earth facing side.  In other words we would be able to see it and it would look bigger than any star.  Otherwise it simply wouldn't be big enough to cast a shadow that covers the lunar disk.

So there are two possibilities.  Either the shadow we see passing across the Moons disk during a lunar eclipse is that of the Earth or it is the shadow of some other, up to now unseen large object which the Wiki tells us it is. A celestial body which must lie between the Earth and the Moon and in the same direct line of sight.  An object which should be bright and obvious to us in the night sky but for whatever reason remains invisible to us.

Flat Earth Debate / How do you know....?
« on: September 12, 2020, 01:34:45 AM »
In the FE Wiki it states:
The sun is a sphere. It has a diameter of 32 miles and is located approximately 3000 miles above the surface of the earth.

Now this is written as a statement of seemingly known fact not a question. There is no 'What if..' prefix to it. So you must have some pretty good evidence if you are confident enough to write it as as a statement. I agree about the Sun being a sphere.   My own observations are evidence enough for that.  But when the RE figure for the Suns diameter is so much greater than 32 miles (approx 865,000 miles) how do you assert with such confidence that your figure (the FE figure) is correct and the the RE figure is not?  Otherwise all the books I have and the notes from my university solar astrophysics module that I recently completed are completely wrong.

If the RE figure is the correct one (as I strongly suspect it is) then the 3000 miles distance figure is also an absolute nonsense.

(My apologies - I meant to post this under FE debate).

Flat Earth General / FE 'Gravity'
« on: August 31, 2020, 03:55:52 AM »
'Universal Acceleration' is a theory of gravity within the Flat Earth Model. The traditional theory of gravity (e.g. Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation, General Theory of Relativity, etc) is incompatible with the Flat Earth Model because it requires a large, spherical mass pulling objects uniformly toward its center.

Yes I think if you were to ask the vast majority of people to describe the Earth this is exactly what they would say.  Why?  Because that's what the Earth is.  A large spherical mass 8000 miles across with a centre of mass (and gravity) at the core.  This has been known since the time of ancient Greece if not before.  I'm sorry if this is 'incompatible' with what FE choose to believe but that doesn't make you right and everyone else wrong does it.  It is what it is.

It all comes down to evidence and on balance there is far more evidence to support the view that the Earth is a large spherical mass pulling objects uniformly towards its centre than there is to support any alternative model.  Otherwise by now I think we would have figured it out.  Of course there will always be a small minority group who choose to think differently and go against the mainstream way of thinking. That's the same for any conspiracy theory. But denying all the evidence that tells us that the earth is a sphere doesn't change the facts.

Flat Earth General / What happens on the other side?
« on: August 30, 2020, 01:10:22 PM »
Under FE Q&A riomdr asked what happens on the other side. 

Shifter replies:

It's anyone's guess. No one knows for sure as no one has ventured there. Maybe it's another whole world or just lifeless rock. Or hell.

The other issue is if the Earth is an 'infinite plain'. In that case the only way there would be down. But we have only dug about 12km before the heat destroys any tools you could use to dig further.

I would agree about the use of the word infinite but not plane.  Rather infinite but unbounded is a phrase I would prefer to use.  But why is it 'anyones guess' about what lies on the other side?  No one knows for sure as no one has ventured there.  Why would that be? 

Could another alternative be that the Earth is not flat after all?  The surface of a sphere is infinite yet unbounded.  You could walk over the surface of a sphere for ever without ever finding an edge.

Flat Earth General / Suns observed motion in the sky.
« on: August 22, 2020, 03:03:14 PM »
FE models state that the Sun moves in a circle above the flat Earth with a radius that changes throughout the year and with a centre that lies directly above the NP.  If you were looking down on the Earth from a vantage point above the level of the Sun, the Sun would be seen to move in a clockwise direction.

An observer located at 45N for example will see the Sun rise in the east and then move to the south, crossing the south meridian at local noon. This is consistent with the above.  However an observer at 45S latitude would also see the Sun rise in the east but it would then move to the north, passing through the north meridian at local noon. How could this  be possible if the Sun was moving in a circle centred on the north pole since the Suns direction of movement south of the equator is the reverse of that seen in the north.

If the Sun only ever moved in a circle centred on the north pole then it would always be seen moving towards the south meridian of the observer regardless of their latitude.

Flat Earth General / Nexus Rings
« on: August 03, 2020, 04:57:28 AM »
In the FE Wiki under the Astrophysics section it states:

The elliptical orbits observed by Astrophysicists on earth are caused by planets moving along transparent, magnetic nexus rings. All significant celestial objects move along individual nexus rings.

May I ask what these Nexus Rings are made from and how they were created in the first place?

Also where can I find out more about these rings because a quick Google search produced no information that wasn't related to jewellery or the Nexus mobile phones. So it doesn't seem as though much is known about these particular magnetic nexus rings.  Certainly in mainstream physics that least.

Correction - I found this

But this is a man-made system so hardly an explanation for the planetary orbits.  In any case this is just a concept and not a real thing.  Plus there is no mention of the word 'Nexus' anywhere in that link.

Linked to this would be what is the difference between evidence and proof.  At what point can we say we have proved something to be correct or incorrect?  To both FE and RE I would ask when would you change 'I know this to be true because I have proof' as against 'I believe this to be true because I have evidence'?

Can you ever present proof which is universally accepted or is the acceptance of proof subject to what you believe or what you want to believe?  The saga about whether the Earth is spinning or not which has been argued about extensively elsewhere is the perfect example.  If you rely solely on what your sense indicate then you would conclude that the Earth is stationary and not moving.  But there are multiple other sources of evidence which tell us the Earth is spinning. So relying entirely on just our sense to tell us what is real and true or not is obviously not the correct line of approach.  We cannot make assumption based purely on what we see and what we feel.  If we take into account different scales of time (some much longer than just a human life time) then our senses start to provide us with clues that the boundaries of what we believe may need to be widened.

As a scientist I would agree that in principle it is risky saying we 'know' anything because when it comes to making the laws of nature and and the laws of physics, we are not the making the rules.  Mother nature does that.  Science is our journey towards being able to understand what the rules are and the consequences of them. We must use all our senses if we are to give ourselves the best chance of being able to understand the laws of nature fully. Even then nothing is guaranteed and so often in science just when we are starting to think we understand something correctly, mother nature puts a spanner in the works and something new is discovered.

That is what makes science fun though isn't it?  Finding out that we are wrong about something we thought we understood is not a sign of weakness but a sign of progress.  And that for me is what makes science fun.

Flat Earth Debate / Eclipses
« on: July 12, 2020, 03:18:26 PM »
Four quotes from FE Wiki:

The sun is a sphere. It has a diameter of 32 miles and is located approximately 3000 miles above the surface of the earth

The moon is a sphere. It has a diameter of 32 miles and is located approximately 3000 miles above the surface of the earth.

A Solar Eclipse occurs when the moon passes in front of the sun.

As far as the Lunar Eclipse goes, there is no evidence that the shadow which manifests on the moon during a Lunar Eclipse originates from the earth at all.

The first two quotes tell us that the Sun and Moon are claimed to be the same height above the surface of the Earth. So that means they orbit in a plane which is effectively a flat surface above and parallel with the surface of the Earth. Both say 'approximate' so these mutually cancel each other so we can say both are the same height.

That being the case, how then can the third quote be valid if FE models are correct?  In other words how can the Moon pass in front of the Sun as seen from the surface of the Earth?  If they are both 3000 miles above the Earth but only 32 miles across (a size to distance ratio of 93) then it doesn't take a huge amount of mental effort to figure out that the Moon can never be seen to pass directly in front of the Sun as seen from the surface of the Earth. So as this arrangement stands and as these figures stand, a solar eclipse simply cannot happen.

Finally...  no evidence that the shadow which manifests itself on the Moon during a lunar eclipse originates from the Earth? Really? OK let's see how true that could be.   The shadow of a object always points in the opposite direction to that of the light source.  A lunar eclipse only ever happens when the Moon is full.  Where is the Moon seen in the sky when it is full?  Directly opposite the Sun. Which is exactly where we would expect the Earths shadow to be is it not? The full Moon rises as the Sun sets and sets as the Sun rises. The 5 degree inclination of the Moons orbit around the Earth is just enough so that during most months the full Moon passes just above or jus below the limits of the Earth shadow.  Hence we don't have lunar eclipses every month. Finally what shape is the shadow?  Circular.  So what does that imply about the shape of the Earth?

The Moon is only 240,000 miles from Earth on average but the shadow of the Earth extends into space for between 870,000  and 930,000 miles.  So therefore the Moon can pass through the shadow of the Earth with ease. The angular diameter of the Earths shadow on the sky as seen from Earth is consistent with how wide a shadow would be expected to be if it was cast by a body 8000 miles in diameter, 93 million miles from the source of light causing the shadow (the Sun) at a distance of 240,000 miles.

So how does that lead us to conclude that there is no evidence that the shadow which manifests itself on the Moon during a lunar eclipse is the Earths shadow?  I can't think of a more obvious conclusion that you can come to after watching a lunar eclipse. We even see subtle shades of blue and green on the Moon caused by ozone in the Earths atmosphere during a lunar eclipse.

The FE model as it stands makes a lunar eclipse impossible. So they are forced to invent a totally hypothetical (they admit it has never been observed) body called the 'shadow object' in order to make lunar eclipses happen.  OK whatever you say!  If the 'shadow' object is never seen because it orbits too close to the Sun, then how do you know...

It is estimated that the Shadow Object is around five to ten miles in diameter.

Flat Earth General / Calculating the diameter of the stars
« on: July 09, 2020, 01:59:41 PM »
Reading through the flat Earth repository I found this

In which Wise presents us with an image of the far side of the Moon (and therefore taken from space) and includes a claim that according to FE theory, the craters of the Moon have been formed as a result of falling stars.

I'm not going to reply directly to that thread as the last reply to it was in October 2018. However I would like to ask how FE theory has reached the conclusion that lunar craters are caused by falling stars rather than meteoroid collisions. Mostly during the time of the LHB.

Flat Earth Debate / Burden of proof
« on: July 08, 2020, 03:38:26 PM »
The burden of proof is always on the claimant and never on the skeptic. The burden of proof is on you.

Wrong. Where one view is held by a majority (call it the mainstream view) and another is held my a minority then it is up to the minority group to justify their claim that the view held by the majority is wrong.

If you were to bring together a random group of people and then divide them up according to those who believe the heliocentric model of the solar system and that the Earth is a globe and those who maintain that a a flat Earth lies stationary at the centre of the solar system then I think the RE side would form the largest group. Because that is where the greatest amount of evidence is.  To give some examples at this point, space based photos, lunar eclipses, the Earths magnetic field, the sharply defined horizon, the seasonal changes of the stars at night, and the varying elevation of Polaris as you move in latitude to name but a few. I know the FE side have their own explanations for all of these but compared to the RE their explanations are a little bit less convincing.

It would be interesting to then ask those who take the FE side to explain their reasons for choice. Not to justify their reasons but to simply explain their reasons.  I'm sure that in most if not all cases the reasons given would fit the descriptions given of conspiracy theories rather than any alternative and genuine scientific reasons. Conspiracy theorists choose to only acknowledge as real and genuine only evidence that fits in with their belief.   

Without exception as far as I can think of, conspiracy theorists will always take the side of the minority view.  So the burden of proof lies on their side to show that the majority view is wrong.  Not the other way round.   And so far, apart from the fundamentally flawed claim that the Earth is flat because it looks flat I haven't seen any other convincing arguments from the FE side to convince me they are right.

The FE side seem to be still arguing among themselves about what form the solar system takes.  RE solved that a few hundred years ago and are now focusing their attention on how the Universe on the much larger scales is made up.

Flat Earth Debate / Geomagentic field
« on: July 05, 2020, 05:00:38 AM »
The Earth unquestionably has a magnetic field.  RE proposes that the magentic field is generated by the molten outer core of the Earth which is rotating at high speed.

Given the assertion from FE that the Earth is flat and motionless, what then is the FE account of how the geomagnetic field is produced?

Flat Earth Debate / Eratosthenes
« on: July 04, 2020, 03:59:38 PM »
The FE Wiki page on Erathsothenes states:

In his experiment Eratosthenes assumes that the earth is a globe and that the sun is very far away in his computations for the size of the earth and the distance to the sun. However, if we use his data with the assumption that the earth is flat we can come up with a wildly different calculation for the distance of the sun, showing it to be close to the earth. The sun changes its distance depending on the model of the earth we assume for the experiment.

Eratosthenes' assumption that the Earth is a globe was not a blind assumption. It was based on the conclusions already reached by the Greeks from various observations they had previously made.

Being a highly educated man of his time with a scientific mind, Eratosthenes considered each of these observations on their own merit and came to the same logical conclusion that the Greeks had come to which is that Earth must be spherical. Of course if you assume instead that the Earth is flat then you will reach very different figures for the distance (and therefore size) of the Sun. That doesn't mean Eratosthenes was wrong and it doesn't make the flat Earth figures right. You would first of all have to state your reasons why you were making the assumption that the Earth is flat.  Eratosthenes was a scientist and so he realised that simply relying on the simple observation that the Earth looked flat was not a good enough reason on its own to conclude that it was.

Using this as his initial hypothesis Eratosthenes knew that whatever the result of his experiment was, the figure he calculated would represent the circumference and not the diameter of the Earth as FE maintain. The accuracy of his result compared to the modern day accepted value is a testament to his meticulous planning, attention to detail of how best to carry out the experiment, and his determination to do it as accurately as possible. Contrast Eratosthenes approach in 205BC with that of Rowbothams canal 'experiment' in the mid 19th century.

As the attached link indicates, between 300AD and 1300AD there was an erratic continuing belief held by a very small number of people (the vast majority of which were poorly educated) that the Earth was flat and that was based largely on religiously influenced grounds.  This line of thinking had been suppressed by 1300AD.

Adding a systematic error into any experimental process will of course either change the result or give a false meaning to the result.  So if you maintain that the Earth is flat and that Eratosthenes calculated the diameter and not the circumference of the Earth then that will produce different figures for both the distance and therefore size of the Sun for example.

Where we have different outcomes of an experiment that are dependent on different interpretations of the inital assumptions made then clearly the preferred interpretation will be the one which most closely matches any beliefs we might have. In the case of Eratosthenes experiment flat Earthers will insist that he wad measuring the diameter and not the circumference.

That is why science does not rely on just one experimental method or assumption to reach a conclusion but compares the results obtained from several different methods. In the case of the Earth and the distance of the Sun, the modern accepted values acquired using different methods have all led us to the same conclusion that the Greeks made which is the same conclusion that Eratosthenes accepted. That the Earth is spherical and that the Sun is much further away than the figure claimed by those who continue to insist that the Earth is flat.

Ancient flat Earth belief came about because those who lived at the time had little else in the way of tools other than their own eyes to reach the best judgement they could about the true shape of the Earth. I think those early observers such as Aristarchus and Eratosthenes did incredibly well considering the resources available to them.

Modern flat Earth believers have no such excuse and their belief seems to be driven more by a personally held feeling about political or religious conspiracy than any real scientific basis.

Flat Earth Debate / Distances of the Stars
« on: July 02, 2020, 09:08:10 AM »
Scanning through the page about the stars in the FE wiki I can find nothing specifically about the distances of the stars. This is another area of astronomy where FE and RE seem to have divided opinions.  The FE Wiki ( version at least) contains a very vague comment regarding the nature of the stars thus:

The stars are luminous elements which move in a layer above the Sun and Moon

What is apparent to the naked eye is that the stars are simply points of light of varying brightness (and to a lesser extent colour). What is also apparent through longer term observation is that the Sun, Moon and planets all move at varying rates against the starry background. The stars though appeared to remain fixed in their positions relative to each other. The Greeks recognised that the nearer objects were the more rapidly they moved relative to the observer.  So they interpreted the lack of observed relative moment of the stars provided an indication that they were much more distant.

Zetetic methods though seem to only take into account information provided by the senses directly. So how do we measure the distances of the stars?  Accepting that the stars are 'luminous elements' and hence emit their own light there are two possibilities.  Either they are tiny and nearby or they are very large and a long way away.

However before I go any further with this I would like to know what the FE take is with the distances of the stars and what your evidence is.

Flat Earth Debate / Moon phases
« on: June 30, 2020, 04:02:43 PM »
From the page about the Moons phases in Zetetic Astronomy: Earth not a globe, the first sentence reads:

IT has been shown that the moon is not a reflector of the sun's light, but is self-luminous.

My question then would be how exactly has this been shown?

The same question applies equally to the various other chapters which start off in the same way.

You can't just say 'it has been shown' or 'it has been proven' without explaining how.

In the case of the Moon for example what evidence did Mr Rowbotham have which indicated that the common and long accepted explanation based on observations that the Moon shines from reflected sunlight is wrong.

We would then need to have an evidenced method and not just a speculated method about how the Moon generates its own light as Rowbotham claims.

I stand 1.9m tall (h).  Standing on the beach on the south coast of England I am looking out into the English channel and in the distance I can see a buoy marking one of the shipping lanes.  From my observation point the base of the buoy seems to lie directly in line with the horizon.

A quick check on the website tells me that from an observation height of 1.9m the horizon (and hence the buoy) is located 4.9km away from where I am standing. I will call this D. Now as long as I know my height and the distance from me to the Buoy I can calculate the radius of the Earth (R).

I have two right angled triangles. The adjacent side of the first is the radius of the Earth (R), the opposite side (AB) is the line connecting the base of the buoy and my eyes and the hypotenuse is the total distance between my eye level and the radius of the Earth (R+h)

From the above and applying Pythagoras we have

AB = SQRT ((R+h)^2 - R^2))

We also have a smaller right angled triangle marked by the surface distance from my observation point to the horizon (D), my eye level above the surface (h) and the direct line between my eyes and the horizon (AB).

Using Pythagoras again we have D^2 = (AB)^2 - h^2

Now expressing AB in terms of R and h and substituting we have

D^2 = (R+h)^2 - R^2 - h^2

Expanding out gives us

D^2 = R^2 + 2Rh + h^2 - R^2 - h^2

Cancelling for R^2 and h leaves

D^2 = 2Rh

We know D and h and hence we can solve for R.

R = D^2 / 2h

We know D = 4,900m and h = 1.9m so 4,900^2 / 3.8m gives us 6.318 x10^6m or 6,318km

That is pretty close to the modern accepted figure of 6,371m.

If we vary h and then re-calculate the distance to the horizon you will always end up with a figure for R in the same order of value.

Flat Earth General / Suns path across the sky
« on: June 26, 2020, 02:37:49 AM »
FE models show the Sun following a circular 'orbital' path centred over the north pole.

So the north pole is the central point of a flat Earth and then as you move further and further away from the north pole you are moving south. Midway between the two is the equator.  So the equatorial radius of the Earth is half of the diameter.

If the Sun is always following a path that is centred on the north pole with a radius that varies with the seasons then looking to the east at Sun rise it will always move to the upper right of its rising point. That's because the Sun will always be following a curved path since it is moving in a circle.

However as real world observations show, for anyone living south of the equator (outer section of the flat Earth surface) then the Sun is observed moving to the upper left.  So at local noon the Sun crosses the northern meridian. The opposite is true for anyone in the northern section of the Earth where the Sun passes through the southern meridian at local noon.

How can this be if, according to FE models, the Sun is always circling around a point over the north pole? As viewed from south of the equator, it appears as if the Sun is orbiting around a point over the south pole but on a FE model the south pole is actually the circumference of the Earth.  If viewed from the equator on either of the equinoxes the Sun rises directly east, passes directly overhead and sets directly west. Therefore it doesn't appear to follow a curved path at all.

Suggestions & Concerns / Re: You have received a warning
« on: June 09, 2020, 03:47:50 PM »
I receive a warning about a post I added under 'What makes the Sun shine'

All I did was provide an answer to a question which is based on the best of my knowledge and belief.  If someone asks a question that I believe I can answer I am not going to lie just because it happens to be a 'round earth answer'.  Surely RE are just as free to answer questions based on their belief as FE are free to answer based on their belief?

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