Miscellaneous often-cited articles

Various authors have put forward conventional explanations for apparent anomalies during solar eclipses, i.e. explanations which do not invoke anything outside conventional physics. By the nature of things, these papers are very widely cited. Without wishing to take any stand upon the correctness of their approaches, we feel that it would be helpful to make these articles more widely available, so we present them here, while providing a few direct quotes.

A paper in Physical Review D by Thomas van Flandern and Yang (he of the Wang gravimetric observations):

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The title is "Allais gravity and pendulum effects during solar eclipses explained", and the authors' initially suggested explanation is that high speed high altitude winds during solar eclipses create a huge moving hump of atmospheric air, which has noticeable gravitational effects. After some pages of analysis, near the end we find the admission "... the gravitational anomaly discussed here is... about a factor of 100,000 too small to explain the Allais excess pendulum precession...", and the author goes on to speculate that air currents in Allais's laboratory were the culprits.

An article in Physical Review D by Unnikrishnan, Mohapatra, and Gillies entitled "Anomalous gravity data during the 1997 total solar eclipse do not support the hypothesis of gravitational shielding":

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After discussing their thesis stated in the title at length, the authors' suggested explanation for Wang's observed gravimetric anomaly is "seismic disturbance due to human activity... arising from large numbers of people and vehicles moving into the eclipse zone just before the start of the eclipse... and then after the eclipse again there will be large numbers of impulses to the ground while people are dispersing..."

An article by van Ruymbeke, Shaoming, Mansinha, and Meurers in the Bulletin d'Information des Marees Terrestres (Information Bulletin on Terrestrial Tides), entitled "Search for the Gravitational Absorption Effect Using Spring and super-conducting Gravimeters during the Total Solar Eclipse of August 11, 1999":

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After a detailed discussion of observations with gravimeters during that eclipse, which showed no anomalies, the authors "explain" the Wang anomaly as "... an eclipse related effect. An effect probably induced by some electrical occurrence due to the special situation of night conditions occurring during the day."


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