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Information Technology
Leicester MA

Free Energy Anyone?

Joe Conley on Monday, 21 August 2006.

"All great truths begin as blasphemies," says Sean McCarthy, quoting playwright George Bernard Shaw.

"McCarthy believes his small Irish high-tech company has overturned one of physics' most fundamental laws.

It happened by accident, he says. His company Steorn was looking for an efficient way to power closed-circuit TVs that spy on ATMs, and instead stumbled on a technique they think produces more energy than it consumes.

The company hasn't released specific details about the process, other than to say it involves magnetic fields configured in precisely the right way. Using the magnets results in a motor that's more than 100 percent efficient -- essentially creating energy, McCarthy says.

or scientists and engineers, this is the equivalent of a perpetual motion machine, and is almost unanimously viewed as flat-out impossible. McCarthy, an affable former energy company engineer, knows just how preposterous his claims sound. So, he advertised in this week's Economist for a panel of the "most cynical possible" physicists to help validate them.

'If we're right, that will come out in due course,' McCarthy says. 'If we're wrong, that will come out. It's such a big claim that it has to be validated by experts.'

According to the company's website, nearly 1500 scientists have 'expressed interest' in testing the technology as of late Monday, and more than 17,000 people had signed up to receive word of the results."

This is certainly news to be taken skeptically, but it's definitely worth keeping an eye on.

Perpetual Motion Claim Probed -- Wired News (

See also:

Irish company challenges scientists to test 'free energy' technology -- Yahoo News (