Water diviners look to the stars

by Nigel Hawkes, Science Editor, The Times

THE mystery of water divining may be explained by a radiation field from space, a distinguished British scientist believes, Professor Vincent Reddish, a former Astronomer Royal for Scotland, has conducted a series of experiments after a building worker demonstrated the technique six years ago at a property he owns in Tayside.

Using two rods, one held in each hand, - the man was able to locate a blocked drain. Professor Reddish tried and found the rods rotated towards each other and crossed when he approached the drain, Ever since he has been trying to explain the effect, By experiment he has found that two pipes or cables lying one above another produce a series of effects, along lines lying parallel to the pipes.

These he compares to interference fringes in radio or light waves, suggesting that the dowsing force, whatever it is, is produced by a form of radiation.The effect is the same any where and does not change over time, suggesting that the radiation responsi ble reaches us from cosmic sources, "I don't know what the field is, except that it is not electrical or electromagnetic," Professor Reddish said. He finds that most solid materials except aluminium will "conduct" the dowsing force, "Aluminium appears to block the charge, which confirms it's not an electrical charge, as aluminium is a very good conductor of electricity."

To test this, he asked six dowsers in different parts of Britain to try putting aluminium foil over their shoes and walking over pipes they already knew about. All six reported that the foil eliminated the dowsing effect. His theory is that the cosmic radiation field reacts with pipes or cables above or below ground to create standing waves of energy. The interaction between waves creates the interference effects found when two cables are close.

Professor Reddish gave a lecture on his work to a meeting organised by the Institute of Physics in Edinburgh on Tuesday evening, "I dare say someone will think I've gone bananas," he said, "but my conclusions are based on straightforward experimental physics. When the method was first shown to me, the man said 'What causes the rods to move?'. "I said 'I don't know' 'Well you're a scientist, you should' he said, So I started trying to find out."

David Pinnegar at Hammerwood Park beleives dowsing to be associated with gravitational variations and waves and has experimented in the Pyramids of Egypt

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