Situs Panduan dan Solusi Terkini

A YouTuber is betting a physicist $10,000 that a wind-powered vehicle can travel at twice the speed of the alike wind.

  • Share
banner 468x60

Faster than an airship

Photo of a Blackbird wind-powered vehicle. Courtesy of Rick Cavalero

banner 336x280
  • A famous YouTuber filmed himself driving a car that was winding downwind faster than the wind itself.

  • A UCLA professor bet $10,000 that the video was incorrect, saying it violated the laws of physics.

  • Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson oversaw the betting. In the end, the professor waived and paid.

  • See more stories on the Insider Business page.

When YouTuber Derek Muller took a test yacht to land for a tour this spring, it wasn’t meant to generate scientific controversy. He sure wasn’t trying to triumph $10,000 in a bet.

Mueller, the creator of the Veritasium channel, loves to analyze unconventional science concepts for her 9.5 million subscribers. So in May, he posted a video of a car called the Blackbird, powered by wind power.

Created by Rick Cavallero, a previous flight engineer, the Blackbird is unique in that it can move straight downwind faster than the wind itself for a lengthy period of time. Any sailor worth their salt can tell you a boat can do this by cutting winding patterns; This is called interference. But the idea that the car can beat the breeze while going straight downwind, without having to intervene, is controversial.

“I knew this was an unexpected problem,” Mueller told Insider. “To be completely sincere with you, when I went out to test the craft, I didn’t understand how it worked.”

In fact, Blackbird is so counterintuitive that less than a week following Muller released his video (below), UCLA physics professor Alexander Kosenko sent an email informing him that the video must be incorrect. Kosenko said a vehicle like this would burst the laws of physics.

“I said, ‘Look, if you don’t believe this, let’s put some money on this,’” Mueller said. He suggested a $10,000 bet, never imagining that Kosenko would take it.

But Kusenko agreed, and in the weeks that followed, the two exchanged statements and discussed the Blackbird. They even brought in several of the biggest scientific names to aid determine who’s right, including Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson.

In the end, Muller won.

“I’ve never seen a way I could lose”

Faster than an airship

Blackbeard’s photo. Courtesy of Rick Cavalero

Mueller said that days following he proposed the bet, Kosenko sent him a document with the terms of the bet.

“Everything was forever so tight, I never saw a way I could lose,” Mueller said.

But Kosenko was equally confident: “Thanks to the laws of physics, I don’t risk anything,” Kosenko told Vice final month. He did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Kosenko gave an hour-lengthy presentation to Mueller that explained why he was sure the YouTuber was badly informed. The professor said Blackbird was most likely taking advantage of the choppy gusts of wind that helped accelerate the car. He outlined his objections to a page from the UCLA website, although it has since been removed.

For his part, Mueller sent Kosenko data from a test drive in his video, which was filmed at the base of Lake Mirage in Arizona. During that flight, Blackbird accelerated over two minutes—a feat that would be impossible if it relied on choppy gusts of wind.

The car reached a speed of 27.7 mph in 10 mph tail winds.

Mueller even hired fellow YouTuber Xyla Foxlin to build a model camper van similar to the Blackbird that can be tested on a treadmill. Indeed, Voxlin has shown that its wind-powered model can go faster than the wind.

Mueller documented all this back and forth in a succeed-up video (below), which he posted in June.

“Kosenko was sure he was right,” Mueller said. “He wanted to make it public.”

How does Blackbeard work

In 2010, Google and Joby Energy sponsored Cavallero and a team of collaborators from San Jose State University to build the Blackbird. The team showed that the car could travel upwind 2.8 times faster than the wind speed, a record confirmed by the North American Wildlife Sailing Association.

Cavalero explained that the Blackbird’s secret is that as soon as the wind pushes the car, its wheels begin to turn the fan blades – they are connected to the blades by a chain. As the car accelerates, its wheels make the fan run faster and faster. Then the propeller blades in turn act as a propeller, pushing more air behind the land yacht and pushing it forward.

Rick Cavalero is faster than a wind vehicle

Engineer and builder Rick Cavalero sits in the driver’s seat of his wind-powered car. Courtesy of Rick Cavalero

“I never even imagined a decade later that a physics professor would still argue how impossible this is,” Cavalero said.

After three weeks of back-and-forth debate, Kosenko admitted that Blackbeard can It goes a little faster than the wind, but she emphasized that it was only for short periods of time. He said that if a gust of wind increased the yacht’s land speed and then died quickly, it would appear that Blackbeard was traveling faster than the current wind speed.

“Our bet solution was not as clean as I would have liked,” Mueller said. “Kusenko coughed the ten thousand, let’s leave it at that.”

Faster than an airship

Courtesy of Rick Cavalero

Cavalero also wanted more recognition of his car’s capabilities.

“He acknowledged for technical reasons – that the car is temporarily moving marginally faster than the wind,” Cavalero said of Kosenko. “I offered him another bet of $10,000, because his art style is so mistaken, but I know I won’t hear from him.”

Mueller’s two videos have garnered at fewest 6.8 million views and 41,000 comments each, many of whom agree with Kosenko that it is impossible for Blackbird to run faster than the wind. Some viewers I asked a YouTuber if he would Follow bets.

“It breaks the minds of a lot of people,” Mueller said. “It obviously affects Kosenko as well.”

Read the original article on Business Insider


banner 336x280
banner 120x600
  • Share