Philadelphia experiment

Tue Jan 7 13:24:27 EST 1992

I sent the discussion of the "Philadelphia Experiment" to the SKEPTIC list,
and got this reply.

Bill Melchior
National Center for Toxicological Research
Jefferson, AR  72079
(501) 543-7206

wmelchior at
From:	SMTP%"SKEPTIC%YORKVM1.bitnet at VM.USC.EDU"  7-JAN-1992 11:02:42.70
To:	Multiple recipients of list SKEPTIC <SKEPTIC at YORKVM1>
Subj:	Re:  "Philadelphia experiment"

From:         Thomas Faller <tomfal%TR6.WES.ARMY.MIL at VM.USC.EDU>

O my Gawd...   (Philadelphiaism.. excuse me..)

I thought everybody knew that this was a phony!

I don't have my reference book with me, but if memory serves me, MOST of the
"details" about the "Philadelphia Experiment" have been made up, i.e., the
books take details from the movies, and the movies get their facts from the
books, and around and around in a dizzying swirl of innuendo and rumor.
The "facts", as I remember them, are that part of the shipyard was used for
the Manhattan Project, hence the secrecy, and the unusual civilian visitors.
Other parts of the yard were involved in ordinary demagnetizing of ships to
reduce their signature to subs and mines. Put the two together and you have
I'll see if I can find some hard references about what really happened, but
the story just seems to get juicier as it goes along, with no way that a few
facts will ever put an end to this "secret project".

Food for thought: Einstein did his seminal work as a young man, and spent his
last 15 years beating his head against the blackboard trying to wrap every-
thing up in a nice tidy package. Don't you think that if he had been able to
warp space with electromagnetic forces and distort time, he might, just
_might_ have left something in his notes about it? Maybe aimed his theoretical
work differently? Maybe smiled a little more?
In short, there is NO indication that Einstein EVER produced any physical
result that would have bent the laws of physics in a new direction. Given the
quality of physicists and engineers associated with our war effort, the
dove-ward shift in political leanings among them during and after the war,
I think it's virtually impossible that we could have discovered a whole new
physics, have sat on it for 50 years, and have NO sign of it emerge in the
50 years of physics following the war.
Believe what you want, but this one's just an overblown urban legend.

Tom Faller

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