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Published: Jun.21.2016

Review of Anomalous Physical Effects During Solar Eclipses and a Proposal for Coordinated Experiments During the Great American Solar Eclipse of 21 August 2017
Thomas Goodey*1 & Rene Verreault2

1. Comanesti, Suceava, Romania
2. University of Quebec at Chicoutimi, Saguenay, Canada

The theme of this conference is “Accessing the Exceptional, Experiencing the Extraordinary.” These words might have been drafted specifically for the awesome experience of viewing a total solar eclipse and for the search for anomalous physics during solar eclipses. And a great such opportunity for the USA SSE audience is coming up – The Great American Eclipse of 21 August 2017. Previous experimental results: There is a significant history of anomalistic results obtained by the use of sensitive physical equipment during solar eclipses. Sensitive 2D pendulums (such as paraconical pendulums), long pendulums, torsion pendulums, Lacoste-Romberg gravimeters, and atomic clocks have been employed. • Allais – 1954. He recorded a surge in the precession rate of his paraconical pendulum reaching four times the Foucault rate, together with a change in the orientation of the pendulum anisotropy axes. • Saxl & Allen – 1970. Anomalies were seen in the motion of a heavy torsion pendulum. • Duval – 1994, Mishra – 1995, and Wang – 1997. Interesting variations in gravimeter readings were observed during eclipses. • Zhou obtained interesting results in 1987, 1988, 1990, 1992 using atomic clocks. • Goodey, Olenici, Pugach – 2008. Correlated anomalies of the movement of two paraconical pendulums, one long pendulum, and several small torsion balances were observed at three locations. • Verreault – 2009. Using a long pendulum, a smooth surge in precession rate reaching 30% of the Foucault rate was observed. Proposition for coordinated experiments during the 2017 Solar Eclipse: For the 2017 eclipse, which passes across the USA, our group wants to urge institutions and individuals in North America to set up and perform experiments of the general types that have yielded apparently positive results in the past, and to give them the guidance of our experience. There is no particular requirement for an experimental station to be upon the central line of totality: based upon past experience, any observational location in Canada, the USA, or Mexico may be capable of yielding interesting results. We consider that gravimeter experiments during the eclipse will be of great importance, and we urge any group in possession of a Lacoste-Romberg gravimeter to contact us for suggestions, and to operate attentively during the eclipse at a suitable orientation. However, the field in which we have most experience is the field of sensitive pendulums. We hope that multiple well-organized and standardized experiments may have a chance to settle this long-standing question once and for all. Therefore we propose participation in a program of experiments with medium-length pendulums. We appeal for SSE members to consider setting up such pendulums in their base locations, and we are ready to supply standardized equipment for such experiments. A group may already have a pendulum – either a long Foucault pendulum or some other type – which is suitable. In that case, they will only need to obtain from us standardized monitoring equipment which we have designed and prototyped. Alternatively, if a group wishes us to provide one or more suitable pendulums, we can do that. We hope to have one of our pendulums operating for demonstration at the conference