Here is the Proof: It powers the BEDINI Machine!

Copyright, Harold Aspden, 2000

If I were to suggest that the aether is a source of energy, then, if you, the reader, are an informed and well-trained scientist, you are likely to turn away from this web page and assume that I am ignorant of the facts of modern science.

Well, I am not ignorant of the scientific evidence relied upon by the modern scientist that bolsters what has come to be the accepted non-belief in the existence of a real aether medium filling all space. Yes, I know that the speed of light in vacuo is constant and seems to change its base of reference according to whichever observer happens to be making the speed measurement. Yes, I know that this only applies to the non-accelerated observer. I just happen to find that difficult to accept as it seems to be complete nonsense and I wonder if the method of measurement involves something that affects the true speed of light within the test system. Yes, I know that distant stars exhibit a spectral red shift, as if we are part of an ever-expanding universe, and, yes, I confess that if that were to be true it would make it very difficult to adhere to a belief in a real aether presence, because I cannot imagine that the aether expands along with the universe.

However, if you are sufficiently well informed on such matters, then you must know that there is an overriding factor in all this, which bears upon energy and the source of energy that created the universe. A ray of light is associated with energy transfer. As concerns the red shift, the problem is the specific feature of the spectra of distant stars by which the different frequency components of the light emitted by the stars degrade in frequency in a proportional relationship, notwithstanding the distance over which the light has travelled through space to reach our observatories. We have laboratory experience of light speed being slower in material media than its speed in vacuo but in its passage through such media each frequency component slows at a different rate as a function of its frequency, and so there is what scientists call 'frequency dispersion'. So, if I say the passage of starlight though the aether between us and a distant star is what accounts for its spectrum, as we observe it, being reduced in frequency as a function of that distance, then you will, as a wise and well-informed scientist, tell me that I must be wrong. Your reason is that you assume that the aether must, in regulating the passage of light, behave, as does a medium such as water or glass, in producing frequency dispersion. On that assumption you say that the stellar red shift is not produced by the passage of light over a very long distance through a real medium and so there can be no aether in reality.

However, do keep in mind that you have made an assumption, and sometimes assumptions can be wrong, whereas I rely on the simple experimental fact implied by observation that the aether must have such properties as do assure the dispersionless passage of light. So if I assert that the energy which created the universe came from the aether, for no other reason than the presumption that the energy comes from somewhere and the notion of an omnipresent aether is the only candidate I can 'see' in that 'somewhere', then your assumption says I have to be wrong and you must look elsewhere for an energy source. If you cannot find that energy source, then, be sensible, and accept that the aether does exist!

Note here that the aether in the sense I use that word is merely that mysterious something that sits in space and has two basic properties, one of which I learned about when my school physics teacher explained that a parallel plate electrical capacitor when energized stores energy in the space between the plates, even if in a vacuum. That meant that the aether can store electrical energy. As to the other property, one also pertaining to the true vacuum that prevails between us and distant stars, I learned about that only later in my university years, it being the fact, already mentioned, that light rays from distant stars can travel through that aether medium without suffering frequency dispersion. I emphasize that I do happen to believe that the speed of light through a true vacuum is a constant and is referenced on that medium, but I do not go further in thinking that the aether provides what has come to be termed 'an absolute universal frame of reference'.

Always keep in mind that 'aether' is only a word and it is only when we experience its properties that we can picture its meaning as something real, albeit in its non-material form.

If you ask how I can justify zero frequency dispersion in what I refer to as a real, albeit non-material, medium, given that all real material media that transmit light do exhibit frequency dispersion, then my answer is quite simple. I say that oscillations transmitted through real material media must be dynamically balanced and so I would expect the aether to provide its own intrinsic dynamic balance when conveying electromagnetic oscillations. So I would expect the aether to have two components capable of electric displacement in opposite directions. Yet, Maxwell's theory, which is the foundation of our understanding of light propagation in the vacuum medium, offers no dual-displacement feature associated with energy storage. Allow for that duality and you have an additional parameter which can optimize its action to ensure that the aether responds to the passage of electromagnetic waves to assure that there is no frequency dispersion. [See my paper entitled The Steady-State Free-Electron Population of Free Space, Lett. Nuovo Cimento, 41 252-256 (1984)] where I justify this and go even further in showing how to derive by pure theory a value of the Hubble constant in accord with that observed. See also my article on this subject The Ether - an Assessment in the October 1982 issue of Wireless World at pp. 37-39, where the distortionless properties of the vacuum medium, as an electrical system, are also explained by analysis of this dual-displacement feature.

In other words, the aether has the property of self-tuning to adapt to the frequency of waves in transit through it, something which Oliver Heaviside discovered was even possible in communication by wire by his invention of his distortionless line. However, real media cannot so adapt to signal transmission frequency with the perfection of the aether response. Indeed, if an electromagnetic oscillation involves an electric displacement in an optical fibre, for example, the body inertia of the fibre has to absorb the lateral force oscillations to keep the dynamic balance and this action is a function of signal frequency.

That said, let us focus on the aether from the viewpoint of its energy storage properties, and put aside the issues concerning the speed of light and dispersion. Otherwise I can but leave you to ponder the question of how physicists can say they measure the speed of light in vacuo when, in true magician style, they rely on mirrors. By that I mean that they reflect light rays forward and back on themselves to make their measurements and so the light rays are not travelling one way through a true vacuum; they are travelling each through the energy field of a counterpart ray travelling in the opposite direction. That must set up standing wave effects, a phenomenon discovered only after Michelson and Morley performed their famous experiment, and since standing waves take their reference as that of the mirrors involved, namely those of the laboratory observer, so the experiment hardly proves anything concerning the speed of light in vacuo as a function of motion through space. It most certainly does not disprove the existence of the aether.

If you ignore the aether, along with its non-dispersion feature, the cosmological red shift says the universe is expanding. Then, building on that assumption, you deceive yourself into thinking back in time to the moment when an ever-expanding universe has its start point. Ah yes, here is where you see the energy input as a one-off event! Wherever the energy came from, it all came compacted in a point concentration at the moment at which time began and, although you cannot explain the circumstances leading to that event or the energy source, you sign off by naming the event as the Big Bang and leaving future generations of scientists to ponder on your delusion!

Well, in a few centuries from now, mankind will experience what happens as our planet's natural energy resources dwindle away. We will be bystanders watching the slow demise of the human race, unable to halt the decline, simply because wise men of science cannot see the aether and have falsely interpreted Nature's energy behaviour as stemming from that mysterious Big Bang event.

For those few readers who may want to know about an alternative future, in which the aether can serve us as an abundant, inexpensive clean energy source, all I ask is that you regard the 'aether' as something real that sits unseen in space and exists alongside the matter form that we can see and sense in many ways. The aether must comply with the scientific experimental evidence, but we must be wary of making unwarranted assumptions.

If you say it is a reference frame for the constant speed of light, then you are speculating in emphasizing that feature and not keeping faith with the scheme I wish to follow. My approach is based on the aether being alive with energy and having properties which regulate the quantum underworld of physics. I see it as able to store energy in a controlled manner, my insight being based on the experimental facts of electromagnetic induction and the corresponding aether reaction. I see it also as the scene of random events, regulated by the preservation of equilibrium occurring on a quasi-statistical basis, as the aether, a living medium, in a scientific rather than biological sense, keeps its energy priming by shedding surplus energy in a quantum process. The result is matter creation, in the form of electrons and protons.

So I put the case that the pollution of our planet arises from our exploitation of processes that have an uncontrolled nature, characteristic of the triggering of a chemical or nuclear reaction in contrast with the control exercised when we increase the electric current in a magnetizing solenoid and find that the energy we supply is stored in the aether bounded by that solenoid. Here physics teachers talk about energy being stored in a 'field', whatever that is, but the truth is that the energy is stored in the aether. I may add that I could say that it would be difficult, if not impossible, for a physics teacher to explain precisely how the energy is stored in that 'field' of their imagination. You might laugh if I suggested that, if there really is a field, one might as well imagine that it is full of sheep ready to eat up any shreds of energy that come along, but are equally ready to disgorge that energy if the situation arises, meaning the switch off of that solenoidal current. However, I go further, I see no field and no sheep but I do sense there is an aether and that it can react to absorb and disperse energy input, only to recover as necessary owing to that solenoidal current control, and then release that energy and await a balancing energy influx as equilibrium prevails. Here one needs to think in terms of thermodynamics and picture a region of space heating up as magnetic energy is stored and cooling down to its base temperature as that thermal energy disperses. Conversely, one must picture that region of space cooling down as it sheds energy when the solenoidal current is switched off, only to recover its equilibrium by drawing in energy from the infinity of surrounding space. The process of magnetic induction is, in fact, a thermodynamic effect using the aether as the working medium.

My enlightenment on this goes back about half a century to my Ph.D. theme concerning energy anomalies in the magnetization process and my own way of deciphering the experimental factor-of-two, the g-factor that physicists see as connected with a so-called 'half-spin' quantum. What should be 1 appears as 1/2 in the electron reaction property of the ratio of angular momentum and magnetic moment As a short summary my argument is that 2 can be seen as 1, rather than 1 being seen as 1/2, if we say that 2 minus 1 is 1, where that minus term refers to an aether that I see but the physics community in general cannot see. Take away the aether and what you think is 1 appears to be halved. Hold faith with the aether and what you see is 2 offset by a reaction of 1 to leave you with the 1 you see as the action of an electron in its orbital motion, but you do not then need the 'half-spin' notion to explain away the factor-of-two anomaly observed in the gyromagnetic ratio experiments, the g-factor experiments involving anomalous magnetic inductive reactions concerning the ratio of magnetic moment and angular momentum. Accept the aether and the fact that you observe the net effect of an action as halved by aether reaction and you are in sight of how the aether stores magnetic energy.

I appreciate that the comments I make in the above paragraph may seem to be incomprehensible if read by a person not familiar with the physics of the 'half-spin' notions of quantum theory. However, keep in mind here that the physics community makes no effort whatsoever to explain in simple terms what they mean when they refer to 'half-spin'. They are really talking about minute energy differences in the energy responses of atoms, but they have wrapped up the theory with relativistic notions of four-dimensional space which no one can really understand. We are duly pacified by their assurances that Paul Dirac, who had a hand in this idea of the half-spin property, earned a Nobel Prize for deciphering the secrets of the abstract mathematical underworld of four-dimensional space. It is all a far cry from our discovery of how to tap into the energy of the space medium and apply that energy for useful purposes, but at the heart of all this there is the contest between belief in 'four-space' and 'aether' and I say that the latter has to become the focus of interest, rather than the nonsense of `four-space', if we are to progress towards a solution of our future energy problems.

Full details concerning my interpretation of that gyromagnetic action (spin as a 2 minus 1 problem rather than a problem of 1, but sometimes 1/2) is all of record in my published work so I will not dwell on that further. Please do, however, accept what I say and begin to suspect that I might just be right in claiming that the aether exists and can serve as a source of energy, pollution-free energy that is, if we can tap it in a controlled manner, something I know to be possible.

My case, as presented so far, is that the energy of our universe is delivered to us by the aether and that it can come in an uncontrolled manner (though not as a Big Bang event) or in a controlled manner (as evidenced by magnetic induction).

Now, all that I have said above is merely a repetition of argument that I have pursued for many years, with little or no impact on the scientific community. So you may wonder why I am bothering to say it all over again. In fact, I did intend to wait a little longer until I had completed some experiments that I am currently [June, 2000] pursuing on a magnetic reluctance motor, my aim being to prove the existence of the aether as an energy source as well as contributing to the new technology of so-called 'free energy'.

In the event, however, my task has been eased by becoming aware of the details of a motor experiment performed by John Bedini, as just reported in the June-July 2000 issue of the magazine 'NEXUS' at pp. 53-55 which puts into print material disclosed by Bedini and shows the structure of the Bedini machine. See also the web site account at, which provides a commentary on the Bedini machine.

The experiment is one I can but admire for its simplicity. The motor is easy to build and has evidently been reproduced by others with the findings confirmed. The only objection I have is that the theory put forward to explain the 'free energy' source is well off-track and so I am writing what follows here to put the simple truths as to this energy source, as I see them.

The Bedini motor causes magnets to sweep past the end of a solenoidal winding so that the magnetic field linking the winding alternates. The solenoid delivers an alternating current which is full-wave rectified by a bridge rectifier to feed d.c. to charge a battery system. The battery system provides the d.c. power to run an electric motor which spins the rotor supporting the magnets and, instead of the battery system discharging power, its net effect is to gain energy substantially and become more charged. We have a 'free-energy' generator.

The question then is: "Why does it work?"

The answer resides in my concerns of the mid-1950 era when I was researching anomalous magnetic energy losses in iron. A side consideration I faced at that time was why, if I apply a magnetic field to a solid copper cylindrical rod, with the field directed along its axis, the copper does not react to suppress the passage of that magnetic field. Yes, there is a small diamagnetic reaction, and, yes, as the magnet is moved into position, there is an eddy-current reaction that ceases when the magnet is at rest. However, a little calculation, considering how the magnetic field should act on the numerous free electrons moving at high speed inside the copper, told me that the copper should virtually preclude the possible existence of a residual magnetic field inside the copper with the magnet at rest relative to the copper, which I knew was not the case.

When I read into this question in the scientific literature I found it had been explained away but by different and somewhat arbitrary theories, none of which was convincing. I soon realized that it was wrong to rely on the standard formulation, the Lorentz law, as a measure of force acting on a system comprising numerous electrical charges in motion. The dominant controlling (limiting) factor has to be optimum energy transfer, meaning that the action of a magnetic field on a system of moving electrical charge will not be such as to maximize the strength of the field reaction, but rather such as to maximize the density of the energy deployed into that reaction.

The analysis was simple, a back-of-envelope type of calculation and one I have presented several times in my published work, the easy reference here being to my book Physics Unified at pp. 36-40. The full text of this book is of record on my website Yes, I did have to accept that when we put current into a solenoid to set up a magnetic field that field had to be twice as strong as standard theory indicates but the world is put right by the ever-present reaction of a back-field that halves the effect of the primary field effect. You might think that it merely complicates things to say that 2 steps forward accompanied by one back is the way one advances by one step, and so one can ignore that retrograde component, but it is that step back that reveals the reacting medium, be it the presence of a lump of copper or the presence of the aether that otherwise provides the reaction.

Now, my own motor research aims at tapping energy from the aether itself, but the Bedini machine, as I see it, taps energy from that reaction in a copper solenoid, which involves a thermodynamic effect in matter as opposed to aether. I think the Bedini machine charges its drive battery system by drawing on ambient heat conducted into the copper, the latter being a close-wound coil of copper wire. Note here that a solid rod of copper containing a circulating reaction current will heat and cool cyclically as the magnetic field is changed cyclically, this being a process supplemented by eddy-current heating. The latter is minimized by replacing the solid copper rod by a solenoid of thin wire having the usual insulated coating. This results in an alternating current which we can draw from the solenoid. Note that there is no iron core to that solenoid. As near as possible it is merely a cylindrical copper form that sits in the space subjected to the cyclically changing magnetic field produced by a N-S orientated magnet and a S-N orientated magnet spinning alternately past its end faces to produce the field reversals. In responding to the alternation of magnetization direction, the copper solenoid limits the current flow according to its normal resistance rather than the dominant inductance there would be if it had an iron core.

Remember, however, that I have asserted that the copper will heat and cool alternately if it is a solid form, but if it is a solenoidal winding then what happens depends on how we deploy the input energy. If the solenoid were short-circuited then the same heating effect would result. However, by connecting the a.c. output to a bridge rectifier, Bedini, did, during what would be the heating half-cycle, guide the current through the rectifier to charge a battery. Instead of the copper heating, much of the energy is conserved by charging the battery. However, during the other half-cycle period it is the copper that cools and in so doing it feeds the energy shed by that cooling also into the battery. This is part of a magnetization cycle where we intercept energy otherwise shed as heat and capture output energy associated with cooling. The net effect has to be that ambient heat conducted into the copper sustains the energy balance to give electrical output power.

Technologically, this suggests that one can have air-conditioning (cooling) combined with electrical power generation, without using any fuel as input. Scientifically, in terms of fundamental physics, it means that the 'half-field' reaction process by which I explain the electron's g-factor of two, the half-spin notion of atomic physics, is justified and that proves the aether a reality. That provides firm ground on which to pursue the quest of tapping energy from that aether by a thermodynamic process linked to ferromagnetism. Physicists do recognize a magnetocaloric process by which the onset of ferromagnetism as iron cools through the Curie temperature involves a release of energy (not a gain) over and above that expected from the specific heat property. They admit that magnetic potential energy (as for gravitational potential energy) is a negative quantity, which is a curious fact if one pretends that the aether does not exist as a background energy medium that can be depleted to match the negative potential energy state implied.

The way to look at this is to imagine a magnet moving along through space devoid of matter. As it leaves one region of space that region cools down by a process of 'cooling by adiabatic demagnetization' and as enters a new region of space that region heats up. The energy books are balanced. The heating process arises because there is electromagnetic induction that sets up electromotive forces which polarize the reacting region. It will dissipate that heat, sharing it with enveloping space, but it will remain polarized so long as that magnet is present, even though it has settled to an equilibrium temperature. Yet, move the magnet away and immediately that polarization will vanish and the reverse induction process will shed energy which can only be accounted for by cooling that region vacated by the magnet. If, however, a lump of copper sits in that space traversed by the magnet, then that heating and cooling sequence will occur and be manifested by the temperature change in the copper, supplemented by the irreversible heating associated with eddy-current effects. Avoid using a lump of copper as such and use instead a wound coil of insulated copper wire and (a) you minimize eddy-current heating but (b) find, with the appropriate axial orientation of the coil and the magnet, that what would otherwise be current flow dissipated as heat becomes current flow that can be directed into a battery to store much of that energy before it can convert into heat. This is the phenomenon we see in the Bedini machine. It proves there is a thermodynamically-reacting aether of the kind I recognized nearly half a century ago as a result of my Ph.D. research on the eddy-current anomaly.

Now, before moving on to describe my own magnetic reluctance motor research, I will, in the next Essay, present what I regard as a major discovery concerning the theory of gravity, and in a way which highlights the thermal properties of the aether. I realize that theoretical physicists will have some difficulty in accepting that the aether, which they say does not exist, can have a temperature, but they must learn to come to terms with the real reality of things. It is just a matter of correctly reinterpreting experimental facts, and being guided by new experimental facts to step back in the evolution of their ideas and branch out along a better path, one that leads somewhere rather than nowhere and one that does not imply its origin in a Big Bang event.

H. Aspden August 28, 2000

If you wish now to see the next Essay in this 2000 series then press:

The Constant of Gravitation