As published in Atlantis Rising magazine February 2002
by Jeane Manning
A high-ranking journalist risked his career by probing a taboo topic – one isolated by fear and ridicule. Defence journalist Nick Cook of London kept encountering questions about hidden developments in energy and propulsion. Had the Pentagon buried something real for half a century, some knowledge that could free us to explore the stars?
In seeking answers, Cook had to look at the 1940s importation of German scientists into what became the American military-industrial “black world”. In these projects, National Security is the excuse to pour billions of dollars into secret compartments of the military without allowing outsiders – including legislators or presidents – to know what is built with the money. The deep black world is buried so far from accountability, it’s as if it doesn’t exist.
Cook concluded that by the 1950s the U.S. was seriously working on “electrogravitics”, a science that looks for the source of gravity and how to control it. If something could indeed lift and propel vehicles without wings or thrust, where would the energy come from?
Marc Millis, who recently was head of a NASA breakthrough-physics program intended to come up with new theories for propulsion, filled Cook in on one possibility – the concept of zero-point energy. Briefly, space is not an empty vacuum. Even if chilled to absolute zero (minus 273.15 C.) its seething energy doesn’t stop. If it could be mined, he said, zero-point energy offers a potentially limitless energy source for spacecraft as well as earthbound needs.
Cook wondered why NASA is struggling with theories today, if eminent engineers and scientists in 1956 publicly said they could crack the puzzle of gravity. And why silence had descended on the topic.
As aerospace consultant for the world’s leading military affairs magazine, he had a lot of credibility to lose if his employers and colleagues noticed where his off-the-job investigations were heading. Regardless, Cook interviewed researchers from Texas to Eastern Europe, and ended up writing Hunt for Zero Point: One Man’s Journey to Discover the Biggest Secret Since the Invention of the Atom Bomb. (Manning’s The Coming Energy Revolution is cited as one of Cook’s principal published sources.)
Could such books, exploding with questions, blow the secrecy covers off non-conventional energy research and the dangerous world of deep black projects? I believe that by themselves books are not enough, but they could help to pry a lid open, by telling a mass audience about the lid. A critical mass of consciousness envisioning energy freedom is, in my opinion, necessary before there’s hope of mobilizing political will. Four new books – The Search for Free Energy, Turning the Corner, Quest for Zero-Point Energy and Hunt for Zero Point – could reach a total of millions of minds if they get enough publicity. Two are from major publishers, but in the U.K. only.
Hunt for Zero Point pries at the heaviest secrecy lid. Wearing his Jane’s Defence Weekly hat and playing by the rules, Cook can walk into facilities of the classified weapons establishment. But even in his privileged position as senior aviation correspondent for JDW, he ran into frustrating barriers during his decade-long search. His book reads like a detective story. Incisive reasoning leads him to reject one avenue of clues and follow another, trust a source or not.
Nick Cook’s work takes him from hangar floors to press conferences in “power-soaked corridors of the Pentagon”. Looking into the eyes of people who work on classified programs, he intuitively knows that the secret they hide is so big that no one person knows all the pieces. “I knew, too, that whatever it was, the secret had a dark heart, because I could smell the fear that held it in place.”
By the end of the book, he has glimpsed the origins of the darkness. It is best told in Cook’s evocative, tight and subtle prose. Hint: the spoils of war included other Nazi specialists in addition to scientists.
Years before that glimpse, Cook ran into the story of the late Thomas Townsend Brown, a gifted engineer whose work, affecting gravity electromagnetically, had impressed some generals in the military. Knowing that disinformation is piled highest on the most fruitful trails, Cook blows some of it off the trail leading to Brown. For example, wild claims attached to a wartime Philadelphia shipyards mystery mix facts – of Brown’s radar-invisibility research – in with fiction. This association, with planted stories about sailors stuck in time warps, deters most self-respecting journalists from investigating Brown’s work, thus serving the secrecy sector. Cook too “could feel the association, with its whiff of paranoia and conspiracy” repelling him. Fortunately in this case he goes against his professional training and does take a look at Brown’s experiments.
Early in the book, however, I almost threw it down in disgust at Cook’s dismissal of an outsider, an Austrian forester who got his knowledge of energy from observing nature. I fumed at the in-the-box journalism – the unquestioned practice of only listening to a person who has initials after his or her name or is otherwise sanctioned by established institutions. Then I realized it was only page 58, and the skilful author might broaden his perspective by the end. He did. Cook ends up seeing how many holes are in our scientific knowledge, allowing people like the Austrian forester/engineer Viktor Schauberger to fall through the gaps while he shows us things that science couldn’t account for. “Because science theory hadn’t mapped them yet. Not outside Nazi Germany, at any rate.”
Cook’s search ends in Vancouver, B.C. He had been steered there by a visionary defence establishment scientist to meet the one-of-a-kind inventor John Hutchison. Other researchers tell us that the Skunk Works scientist earlier filed papers on a process that Hutchinson claims as his own – the making of certain solid state “free energy” converters. At the same time, Hutchison is pleased that the brilliant scientist is still showing visitors a video of the Hutchison Effect antigravity experiments of the 1980s.
Hunt for Zero Point is from Random House UK. Simon and Schuster UK brought out The Search for Free Energy by journalist Keith Tutt, with a foreword by Sir Arthur C. Clarke. Tutt produces science TV programs for BBC and won a prestigious BT Science Journalism of the Year award for his documentary on a nuclear power plant.
Technologies popularly called “free energy” are fuelless – they do not consume a substance in order to produce energy. Tutt’s highly readable book takes the reader from Nikola Tesla and inventor T.H. Moray of Utah to Bruce DePalms’ N-machine, the Swiss Thesta-Distatica device and other samples of such devices. Cold fusion research gets a thorough hearing which ends with Scott Chubb at the Naval Research laboratory saying that eventually science will accept the fact that cold fusion is quite real. The book’s appendix includes Paulo and Alexandra Correa’s and others’ patents, and excerpts from the BBC Radio interviews with Professor Martin Fleischmann.
Tutt visited the Swiss communards who believe humankind is still too warlike to be given the commune’s free-energy knowledge. He says the Methernitha community continues its work on larger generators, “apparently waiting for the time when humanity proves itself to be more than simply human”.
Turning to the seamy side of the scene, Tutt’s chapter “On Charlatans, Conspiracies and Sceptics” exposes Brian Collins of Australia. Years ago Collins preyed on rural peoples’ religious and anti-government sentiments to get money, Tutt says. Investment was equated with faith in the Lord. The same chapter deals with actions of the American super-promoter Dennis Lee.
In the final chapter Tutt brings up the importance of public or peer support to help legitimate new technologies. For example, “Will Blacklight Power overcome its enemies in the scientific mainstream and forge a successful energy technology for this century and beyond?” The outcome depends on how difficult it is to engineer the technology, the on-going attitude of the U.S. patent office, investors’ nerves, the press’s attitude and how interested consumers are, Tutt says.
He concludes that “How bad do things have to get?” may be a relevant question. Today, mainstream purse-holders are still afraid to look outside the conventional, he notes, but as world crises deepen and the real costs of climate-change are in our faces, the search for novel approaches such as the free-energy devices will look more and more attractive to people.
Adventures Unlimited published the new 224-page book by Moray King, Quest for Zero Point Energy. This is the one to give the scientist or engineer who is serious about building an energy device that taps into an anomalous source of power. It’s nearly a how-to book, giving experimenters possible guidelines for tapping into zero-point energy to make useful devices. King comes from both academia and practical engineering, and is now senior scientist for Paraclete Corporation in Utah. He has done the Ph.D courses in Systems Engineering and has a long track record of studying the experiments of many of the energy pioneers. King challenges inventors to give the world free information about a clear experiment that can be repeated.
King’s afterword deals with why zero-point energy devices aren’t on the store shelves yet. “Most career scientists, engineers and professors refuse to research the field since it violates the ruling paradigm.” The few independent inventors King met who had it together – not only achieved enough excessive power to make their devices self-running but also had the business capability to proceed to manufacturing the devices – were suppressed. King doesn’t claim to know who is behind the suppression.
Is humankind ready for the energy abundance that zero-point energy could theoretically unleash? We are not, King concludes. “One possible solution is that the discovery be kept secret and controlled by a central authority, like atomic power. Until we grow up spiritually, we would not have complete freedom for energy use.”
A more hopeful solution King sees is the consciousness movement – people waking up to see we are connected, part of a greater spiritual being. He has experienced so many synchronicities that he knows we are being guided. And he sees the quest for zero-point energy as possibly broadening into a consciousness transformation at the planetary level.
King’s book aims to inspire scientists and inventors. A fourth new book could be a textbook for even non-technical students and planners who want to avoid an oil-blackened or radioactive future: Alternative Energy Institute (www.altenergy.org) publishes an attractive internet-linked book, billed as a roadmap to the coming energy revolution. Turning the Corner: Energy Solutions for the 21st Century, by MIT earth sciences graduate Dohn Riley and cultural geographer/historian Mark McLaughlin, could be used as a solution-oriented textbook for students, or a source of information for those making energy-related decisions for society. In a profusely illustrated 385 pages, the coming energy crisis gets 90 pages, renewable energies 70, and The Energy Revolution: Technologies on the Horizon spans 100 pages that include cold fusion, zero-point energy, and electrogravitics. Wisely, the book is conservative enough to appeal to a mainstream environmentalist. Its back cover avoids using the phrase zero-point energy, although on it Sir Arthur C. Clarke praises the book for covering the “more speculative forms of energy.” He adds, “I do hope some of them arrive in time!”
Turning the Corner says that to advance to life-beyond-the-oil-patch requires both a panoply of new alternative energy systems and strong public demand for clean and green power. This transition won’t be easy or quick, AEI’s book says, but the well-being of future generations relies on decisions we act on today.
Even if the public does demand development of clean abundant-energy technologies, in the short term an energy crunch looks inevitable. Tom Valone of Integrity Research Institute (integrityresearchinstitute.org) gives us a look at that crunch. He is writing a doctoral thesis book about zero point energy.
Valone reminded me that the U.S. National Energy Strategy calls for additional hundreds of thousands of megawatts of electrical power capacity, at least eight big rig oil refineries, more than 250,000 miles of gas pipelines and an interstate national electric grid. That wish list was pre-September-11. Since then, the war has dramatically ratched up the need for energy independence. The national strategy calls for 1,900 new power plants in the next 20 years, but so far few of the needed plants are being built.
Frustrated members of the energy and engineering communities met in Washington DC recently to discuss barriers to improving the energy infrastructure. The non-profit United States Energy Association (USEA) co-sponsored the briefing. The energy sector wants injections of trillions of dollars, and even then no one wants a power plant in their neighborhood. In New York City today, companies can’t get a permanent permit for a new site, period. Discouraged, industry groups conclude “energy is a product that is vilified.”
Outsiders offer a different perspective – people just want a cleaner choice of energy source. But the National Energy Strategy points backwards to fossil fuels and nuclear, and the U.S. regulatory system doesn’t reward companies who improve energy efficiency.
Why don’t solar, geothermal, biomass and wind power come to the rescue? One answer is that most renewable energies can’t compete with the low two-cents-per-kilowatt/hour wholesale price of electricity, a consultant told Valone at the briefing.
In conversations with other engineers and speakers, Valone injected a note of hope about decentralized future energy possibilities that don’t need billion-dollar investments and won’t pollute. But even when he mentioned ready-to-go approaches such as Dr. Paul Brown’s photoremediation for disposing of nuclear wastes and for energy production, Valone’s efforts were met with looks of disbelief and “Where’s the prototype operating?” Understandably, no one was ready to be the pioneer. Industry decision-makers want to see a completed full-scale project, funded by someone else, before buying.
Apparently the wisdom of a terrorist-vulnerable national energy grid, and health effects from 5,000-megwatt transmission lines, aren’t loudly questioned throughout the energy sector. Everyone has too many pressing-problem “alligators” to kill before they get around to draining the energy-dependency swamp and developing small decentralized power plants.
The outpouring of greenhouse-effect gases isn’t about to change either. Margo Thorning, chief economist for the American Council for Capital Formation, told the meeting that we don’t have the technology to reduce power plants’ carbon dioxide emissions by seven per cent by the year 2012, and taxing their more noxious emissions won’t happen.
The industry has its euphemisms such as “externality taxes” and “externality costs” for oil dependency. A blunt person might use plainer words – “the costs in human health and soldiers’ lives, and the dollar costs of oil wars”.
Perhaps the efforts of Cook, Tutt, King, McLaughlin, Riley, Valone and other authors will help raise public awareness of potential alternatives that today are mostly hidden from view.
Jeane Manning is the author of The Coming Energy Revolution: The Search for Free Energy (Avery Publishing, NY 1996)