TheRaider.net
 

Go Back   The Raven > Off Topic > Archaeology
User Name
Password

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-07-2010, 03:24 PM   #1
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
Archimedes death ray

A while back I considered the seven wonders of the ancient world, looking for Macguffins. The Lighthouse of Alexandria, completed in 247 BC, has the legend of its reflecting mirror which could burn ships 30 miles away on the horizon.

Parabolas in civil defense were popular then, as Archimedes reportedly used one or several mirrors (and his ship-grabbing claw) across the Mediterranean to destroy Roman ships at Syracuse in 212 BC, where he died, at 75. Or maybe it was a lens. Mythbusters failed twice to replicate the experiment but some MIT students succeeded with a flat mirror array.



It wouldn't be hard to weave both mirrors into the same tale. I gave it a try here. The Macguffin seems perfect for the space race, in which a lens on a Soviet satellite in low earth orbit could adjust the focal point to just few hundred miles away on Earth. Who cares why it works while modern technology fails... that's part of the mystery!

Last edited by Moedred : 02-09-2011 at 01:19 PM. Reason: fixed broken link
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2010, 04:04 PM   #2
Montana Smith
IndyFan
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 10,617
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moedred
The Macguffin seems perfect for the space race, in which a lens on a Soviet satellite in low earth orbit could adjust the focal point to just few hundred miles away on Earth. Who cares why it works while modern technology fails... that's part of the mystery!

Indiana Jones meets Die Another Day! The Icarus satellite, purportedly designed to reflect the sun's light to allow crops to be grown at any time of the year in areas facing potential famine... but capable of being focused on a particular target, creating a deadly beam of high-intensity heat. By the time this film gets made, Indy will have his own Aston Martin to outrun the beam.
Montana Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2010, 06:20 PM   #3
Matt deMille
IndyFan
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 490
Very cool ideas! Lucas should take note of this. I'd love to see something like this for Indy 5!

On a slightly different note, it does bring up an interesting title: "Indiana Jones and the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World".
Matt deMille is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2010, 01:40 AM   #4
Falxman
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 3
Cool

This is really cool, I remembered seeing something about this on the history channel. I kinda forgot about it though, this is a nice reminder! I really like reading about things that show how advanced the ancient peoples were. It kinda feels like a mix between ancient technology and modern technology.

Matt - I would totally watch that movie!
Falxman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2010, 01:51 AM   #5
Montana Smith
IndyFan
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 10,617
Quote:
The Archimedes Heat Ray – myth or reality?

Archimedes may have used mirrors acting collectively as a parabolic reflector to burn ships attacking Syracuse.The 2nd century AD author Lucian wrote that during the Siege of Syracuse (c. 214–212 BC), Archimedes destroyed enemy ships with fire. Centuries later, Anthemius of Tralles mentions burning-glasses as Archimedes' weapon.[25] The device, sometimes called the "Archimedes heat ray", was used to focus sunlight onto approaching ships, causing them to catch fire.

This purported weapon has been the subject of ongoing debate about its credibility since the Renaissance. René Descartes rejected it as false, while modern researchers have attempted to recreate the effect using only the means that would have been available to Archimedes.[26] It has been suggested that a large array of highly polished bronze or copper shields acting as mirrors could have been employed to focus sunlight onto a ship. This would have used the principle of the parabolic reflector in a manner similar to a solar furnace.

A test of the Archimedes heat ray was carried out in 1973 by the Greek scientist Ioannis Sakkas. The experiment took place at the Skaramagas naval base outside Athens. On this occasion 70 mirrors were used, each with a copper coating and a size of around five by three feet (1.5 by 1 m). The mirrors were pointed at a plywood mock-up of a Roman warship at a distance of around 160 feet (50 m). When the mirrors were focused accurately, the ship burst into flames within a few seconds. The plywood ship had a coating of tar paint, which may have aided combustion.[27]

In October 2005 a group of students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology carried out an experiment with 127 one-foot (30 cm) square mirror tiles, focused on a mock-up wooden ship at a range of around 100 feet (30 m). Flames broke out on a patch of the ship, but only after the sky had been cloudless and the ship had remained stationary for around ten minutes. It was concluded that the device was a feasible weapon under these conditions. The MIT group repeated the experiment for the television show MythBusters, using a wooden fishing boat in San Francisco as the target. Again some charring occurred, along with a small amount of flame. In order to catch fire, wood needs to reach its flash point, which is around 300 degrees Celsius (570 °F).[28]

When MythBusters broadcast the result of the San Francisco experiment in January 2006, the claim was placed in the category of "busted" (or failed) because of the length of time and the ideal weather conditions required for combustion to occur. It was also pointed out that since Syracuse faces the sea towards the east, the Roman fleet would have had to attack during the morning for optimal gathering of light by the mirrors. MythBusters also pointed out that conventional weaponry, such as flaming arrows or bolts from a catapult, would have been a far easier way of setting a ship on fire at short distances.[1]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archimedes

I can't find Lucian's reference to this in the texts available at Gutenberg, though.

The Greeks did use napalm against ships - known at the time as 'Greek Fire'.
Montana Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2010, 07:39 PM   #6
WilliamBoyd8
IndyFan
 
WilliamBoyd8's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Northern California
Posts: 747
The 1961 George Pal film "Atlantis, the Lost Continent" depicts such a device
being used to destroy ships.




__________________________________________________ __________

Check out my website at:
http://www.brianrxm.com
Roman Coins, Mexican Coins, Favorite Coins, Movie Coins
WilliamBoyd8 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2010, 07:59 PM   #7
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
That's how I imagine the mirror or lens, faceted and prismatic. In the novel John Carter of Mars, they explained an invisible spaceship as bending light around it by magnetizing hexagonal sand from Jupiter. It would have to be complex if the script called for a portable MacGuffin. Maybe small enough to conceal inside a jacket!
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2010, 06:49 PM   #8
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
Obama will help Mythbusters test Archimedes death ray a third time December 8.

Then, Clinton will test Archimedes screw...
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2010, 06:13 PM   #9
WilliamBoyd8
IndyFan
 
WilliamBoyd8's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Northern California
Posts: 747
And here's this:

Las Vegas Hotel Knew of Pool 'Death Ray' Back in 2008

Hotel Design Channels Sun Into a Powerful Beam, Scorching Swimmers

A solar glare specialist who was denied a contact by a Las Vegas hotel to help
it solve an intense sunlight issue -- now dubbed a "death ray" by employees there --
says the casino ignored his advice and went with a cheaper fix.

"It is one thing to ask experts in their relative field for advice; it is
another to ignore their advice without justification", glass film manufacturer
Nichols E. Ashton wrote the builders of the Vdara hotel back in November 2008.

Today, guests lounging at the Las Vegas pool reportedly are getting burned by
concentrated sun rays strong enough to melt plastic drink cups and plastic
newspaper bags.

ABC News:
http://abcnews.go.com/Travel/las-veg...ry?id=11760093
________________________________________________

Check out my website at:
http://www.brianrxm.com
Roman Coins, Mexican Coins, Favorite Coins, Movie Coins
WilliamBoyd8 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2013, 03:53 PM   #10
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562


From the Indy 4 production art, could this be Archimedes' lens, in the lower right?
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 08:01 AM   #11
Goodeknight
IndyFan
 
Goodeknight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Chesapeake, VA
Posts: 1,007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moedred


From the Indy 4 production art, could this be Archimedes' lens, in the lower right?

Looks to me more like using a magnifying glass to start a fire. As a whole, it appears to be a compilation of technical gifts from the gods:

Left side (top to bottom): Harvesting a planted crop, plowing and sowing seed, and using a simple water wheel
Right side (top to bottom): Firing bricks, using levers, and making fire

Is there a higher rez version of this? The glass looks a bit like a face, but I can't make it out clearly.
Goodeknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 11:53 AM   #12
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodeknight
Is there a higher rez version of this?
Yes, here. A magnifying glass is a lens.

Last edited by Moedred : 02-23-2017 at 02:09 PM. Reason: remodeled website with much bigger pics!
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-13-2013, 12:31 PM   #13
Stoo
IndyFan
 
Stoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Neuchâtel, Switzerland (Canadian from Montreal)
Posts: 7,933
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodeknight
Is there a higher rez version of this? The glass looks a bit like a face, but I can't make it out clearly.
I think Moedred is right.

Stoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2013, 08:05 AM   #14
Goodeknight
IndyFan
 
Goodeknight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Chesapeake, VA
Posts: 1,007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moedred
Yes, here. A magnifying glass is a lens.

I knew where you were going, and, obviously, a magnifying glass is a lens. However, a magnifying glass is not a parabolic mirror, which is what is usually associated with the Archimedes Death Ray. One could argue about "mirror lenses" and telescopes and such, but a lens and a mirror are traditionally two different things.

I was simply saying I don't think the ancients depicted would have named that little thing a Death Ray with capital letters. They would have called it something like, "Look I Can Start a Fire With A Piece of Glass."

Thanks for the image, Stoo. I couldn't make out those hand details well enough.
Goodeknight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-14-2013, 12:20 PM   #15
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
My guess is it's flint and steel the interdimensional being is rubbing together. Just thought I'd retcon some ancient mythology using Indy lore to craft an unreproduceable Macguffin for antagonists to pursue. Such a Macguffin's origin may be better left unexplained...
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-2013, 06:15 PM   #16
WilliamBoyd8
IndyFan
 
WilliamBoyd8's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Northern California
Posts: 747
A scene from the 1961 George Pal film "Atlantis, the Lost Continent" was shown on
the NBC Today show this morning in connection with a story on a London glass building
which has been reflecting solar rays and burning up parked cars.

NBC article on the London building:

http://www.nbcnews.com/science/how-l...ire-8C11069092

And what are the devices shown on top of the wall on this Constantine Roman Coin?



Diademed head right / CONSTANTINVS AVG
Campgate with two turrets and star above / PROVIDENTIAE AVGG
Metal: Bronze Size: 19mm
Struck: AD 326-328 Thessalonica


Last edited by WilliamBoyd8 : 09-04-2013 at 06:21 PM.
WilliamBoyd8 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-05-2013, 01:12 PM   #17
Stoo
IndyFan
 
Stoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Neuchâtel, Switzerland (Canadian from Montreal)
Posts: 7,933
Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamBoyd8
A scene from the 1961 George Pal film "Atlantis, the Lost Continent" was shown on
the NBC Today show this morning in connection with a story on a London glass building
which has been reflecting solar rays and burning up parked cars.
Funny, I was just coming to this thread to post about this story and you've already done so.

A few hours before you posted yesterday, I met up with fellow Ravener, Archaeos in downtown London. When our conversation turned to new architecture in the city, he told me about this very building and all the damage that it was doing. We had a good laugh and one of the first things that came to my mind was Archemides' Death Ray.

I wanted to experience the heat myself but scaffolding with a sunscreen is now in place to cover the affected area.

A journalist actually fried on egg in the hot spot 2 days ago!

Stoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2014, 01:01 PM   #18
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
Saw the 1914 Italian film Cabiria. It features fiery child sacrifice that makes Temple of Doom look tame (see poster), Hannibal's elephants crossign the alps in one of several primitive split screens, and Archimedes' death ray. Here it's a huge circular array of mirrors. (The music is not original, feel free to mute it.)


Last edited by Moedred : 02-23-2017 at 12:59 PM. Reason: updated video
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2014, 01:40 PM   #19
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
In 1945...
Quote:
U.S. Army experts revealed a Nazi plan to construct the extraordinary device. Consisting of a reflective, slightly concave disk approximately one mile in diameter, the sun gun would focus solar rays onto enemy cities -- and burn them.

Eminent German rocket scientist Hermann Oberth: "My space mirror is like the hand mirrors that schoolboys use to flash circles of sunlight on the ceiling of their classroom. A sudden beam flashed on the teacher’s face may bring unpleasant reactions."
Muahahahaha! Read the Life Magazine article here.





Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2014, 03:35 PM   #20
TheFedora
IndyFan
 
TheFedora's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 510
^So basically despite popular depiction, german weapons division wasn't suddenly making advanced-for its time super-weapons? Seriously their plan sounds like something north korea would try to pull.
TheFedora is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2017, 12:36 PM   #21
Moedred
Administrator
 
Moedred's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: California
Posts: 4,562
FYI, link changed to Nathan Schroeder's site, with bigger images than before.
http://www.nathanschroeder.net/Gallery/IndianaJones
Moedred is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:48 AM.