Friday, 15 February 2013

Objects that move on their own!

Water surfaceI put down the bowl and prepared to pour food into it. Except the bowl started to move, of its own accord. Just momentarily the word 'ghost' flicked through my mind. But I soon decided it must be aquaplaning. I'm sure all readers will be familiar with this spooky-looking phenomenon.

The reason I thought 'ghost', albeit momentarily, was because the surface the bowl was sliding over looked perfectly dry, from all sorts of angles. It was only when I felt it with my hand that it was clearly wet. There was a very thin film of water present. Perhaps just a tiny bit of soap was present in the water to reduce surface tension and make the puddle more of an invisible film. I didn't even see any reflections (like in the picture).

This sort of aquaplaning can often account for observed object movement involving level surfaces, like table tops, in haunting cases. It is unlikely the witness will remember whether the surface was wet after the incident. And they might not have noticed even if it was, as my experience illustrates. It might be possible to replicate the effect by wetting a surface where object movement has been reported. And you could try adding a little soap, if it is an area where that may have happened accidentally.

Vibration, from machinery for instance, can also cause objects to move across level surfaces. Certainly, whenever objects are observed sliding over a flat surface on their own, these sort of causes need to be considered.

PS: Can anyone see figures, faces or other apparent objects in the pictur

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