The Dean drive was a device developed and advertised by developer Norman Lomer Dean (1902-1972) that he declared to be a reactionless drive. Dean asserted that his tool was able to create a uni-directional force in vacuum, in violation of Newton’s 3rd legislation of activity from classical physics. His claims produced prestige considering that, if real, such a gadget would have had huge applications, completely transforming human transport, engineering, room traveling and also even more. Dean made a number of measured exclusive presentations of a variety of various gadgets, however no working models were ever shown openly or subjected to independent analysis as well as Dean never ever offered any kind of rigorous theoretical basis for their use. Analysts end that the activity viewed in Dean’s tool presentations was likely reliant on unsymmetrical frictional resistance between the gadget as well as the area on which the device was set, causing the tool relocating in one direction when in use, driven by the vibrations of the apparatus.

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Early publicity

The Dean drive got a bargain of publicity in the 1950s and 1960s through the pillars and also conference presentations of John W. Campbell, the long time publisher of Astounding Science Fiction journal. During that time, Campbell thought that his magazine needed to transform society by aiding advancement research study that was turned down by ‘mainstream’ science, and he advertised a series of far-reaching ideas that had dubious clinical basis, like dianetics, dowsing, the Hieronymus equipment, or the Dean Drive. Campbell thought that the gadget worked and also claimed to have actually witnessed it operating on a washroom scale. The weight reading on the scale appeared to minimize when the gadget was turned on. He subsequently published pictures of the scale with the drive stopped and running. The June 1960 cover of Astounding journal showcased a paint of an Usa submarine near Mars, supposedly moved there by a Dean drive.

Dean, who was trying to discover potential purchasers for his modern technology, was deceptive concerning the information of just how it was meant to work, but it was claimed to include asymmetrical revolving weights as well as to generate a lot of vibration.

Dean and Campbell declared that Newton’s legislations of motion were only an estimation, which Dean had actually found a fourth regulation of activity. This has been referred to as a nonlinear correction to one of Newton’s legislations, which, if proper, would supposedly have actually made a reactionless drive viable after all.

One outcome of the initial write-ups in Campbell’s magazine was that two other scientists, William O. Davis and also G. Harry Stine, checked out Dean and observed a demo. Outcomes of this visit were published in the Might 1962 as well as June 1976 problems of the magazine, the name which had actually been changed by Campbell from Astounding to Analog. Davis witnessed a demonstration by Dean, and created: ‘It was the verdict of both Harry Stine and also myself that we had experienced a genuine abnormality and that the possibility of scams in the presentation was slim.’ Sci-fi writer Jerry Pournelle pointed out that Stine was well qualified to make a judgment on the tool, but that he was more gullible than various other persons.

Davis’ 1962 write-up was entitled, ‘The Fourth Legislation of Movement’, and explained a theory in which Dean’s gadget (and also others) can save momentum invisibly through ‘gravitational-inertial radiation’. One information of Davis’ hypothesis entailed the pressures of activity and response– physiques could reply to those forces nonsimultaneously, or ‘out of stage’ with each other.

Davis’ 1976 article, ‘Detesters, Phasers and Dean Drives’, reported his examinations with Stine, a designer which constructed devices to test that facet of the theory. Stine claimed they had the ability to accurately create and also reproduce a 3-degree phase angle in a direct system, which was not possible according to normal physics. After that they failed to replicate the effect in a pendulum system, utilizing a rocket-powered ballistic pendulum. The pendulum examination would have shown definite that the Drive worked, but Dean chose not to subject the initial Dean Drive to a pendulum examination. Campbell reported that he had seen the Drive subjected to a pendulum test, but Davis and also Stine suspect that he only reported exactly what Dean had actually informed him as well as had never seen the real examination. Davis claims the concern can’t be worked out till the pendulum examination is made. Their study was terminated in 1965 when the nationwide economic situation took a downturn, and was never ever resumed. The 1976 write-up was an attempt to obtain research study rebooted, but evidently failed.

In 1984, physicist Amit Goswami created that ‘Dean’s equipment made such a splash with viewers of sci-fi that it is now traditional in SF circles to refer to a reactionless drive as a Dean drive.’

Purported weight loss

Dean made a presentation for a rep of the journal Popular Mechanics of among his ‘Dean drive’ devices. The witness reported that ‘While suspended over the ground, had the ability to pull a tons to itself without itself being drawn towards the lots’. One more variation of the device was reported to be ‘able to use a force to a hand, without moving– yet when the device was switched off an equivalent force used by the hand effortlessly moved the device’. Dr. William O. Davis, that saw the latter demo, wrote in his notebook concerning Dean’s explanation of exactly how the gadget worked, ‘… does not strike me as valid … Because of this I have actually determined to take on a theoretical research study of vibrant systems to view if a principle can be evolved which will certainly explain a world in which Dean’s Drive can already existing but where various other recognized truths are not contradicted.’ Davis generated a hypothesis as well as it was published in Analog in 1962.

Later analysis has revealed that the interactions of vibration, rubbing, and resonance with the springs of the scale are most likely the source of the evident fat burning reported by Campbell and others of apparent ‘anti-gravity’ and also ‘reactionless thruster’ effects.

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Interested parties

In the 1950s Jerry Pournelle, helping an aerospace firm, called Dean to examine acquiring the tool. Dean rejected to demonstrate the device without pre-payment as well as pledge of a Nobel prize. Pournelle’s firm hesitated to take care of the right to check out the gadget as well as never saw the purported version. 3M sent out reps concerning the very same time, and obtained similar outcomes. Pournelle is now convinced that Dean’s device never worked.

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Dean was provided two UNITED STATE licenses on mechanical tools probably related to his Dean drive cases. His initial license for a ‘System for transforming rotating motion into unidirectional motion’ was provided on May 9, 1959. Another patent for a ‘Variable oscillator system’ was given on May 11, 1965. These two license designs were the only ones where Dean exposed the design information with a description for use. The details were insufficient, as well as it is not feasible to develop a Dean Drive just from the explanations in the license. Dean’s patents, as well as licenses for lots of other comparable tools, have been analyzed and it has actually been established that none can create net directional embed vacuum or go against Newton’s Third Legislation. Dean also demonstrated various other mechanical devices that were accurately different from his patent layouts yet evidently never looked for licenses for them neither otherwise exposed their design information or theory of operation.

In 1978 physicist Russell Adams composed a short article in Analog. Searching in the US patent workplace he had discovered at the very least 50 patents of similar reactionless drives. After researching the mechanisms, he ended that they all relied in friction against the floor they were put on, as well as they would be useless in room, where there isn’t rubbing versus any sort of surface.

Dean’s patented tools, and also his explanation of exactly how his Drive was intended to function, were later on revealed to develop no net weight loss over time as well as do not break Newton’s 3rd legislation of activity. Several various other inventors claim to have actually designed similar gadgets, and they all still stay unproven, and also lacking a strong theoretic basis.


Further developments

After Dean’s fatality, neither the presentation tools nor any type of working devices were found amongst his experiments. The demonstration devices were plainly various from the tools patented by Dean, as well as no representations were ever before discovered for them. As a result, it is difficult to examine Dean’s reported designs or devices to see if they worked as he claimed.

In 1997 physicist John G. Cramer pointed out the Dean Drive in Analog in his pillar ‘Alternate Sight’. He said that the demo made to Campbell was flawed, as well as the drive had actually turned out to be phony, like several various other cases of antigravity devices.

In 2006 a NASA technological record offered the Dean Drive as the most well-known example of an ‘oscillation thruster’ as well as examined its theorical basis and expediency as a room drive. It claimed that ‘Unfortunately, such devices are not innovations, since they still call for a link to the ground to develop net motion. The ground is the response mass as well as the frictional link to the ground is a needed element to its operation.’ NASA consistently receives proposals of similar tools, as well as the memo suggested that future reviews of claimed propositions ‘should require that submitters fulfill marginal thresholds of evidence prior to engaging in additional document.’

In 2012 a scientist attempting to distinguished the Woodward impact, another suggested reactionless drive result, has actually explained that she thoroughly designed her experiments to especially leave out any sort of ‘Dean drive’ results: the unintended interaction with the setting in, around or touching the apparatus. She thought about these impacts ‘spurious noise’.


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