#### TierraPlana

##### Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« on: October 12, 2019, 07:54:28 PM »
In his book ‘Zetetic Astronomy’, SBR describes in chapter 5 an investigation in which he sets out to 'prove' that the distance of the Sun above a flat Earth is just 700 miles.  He uses observations of the Suns altitude (elevation) from two different locations in London and Brighton.

For London he states that at 12noon on a given day the Sun is seen to have an altitude of 61 degrees. For the date given (13th July 1870) this turns out to be about right. At the same time and on the same date (it would only be fair) the Suns altitude as seen from Brighton, about 50 miles to the south is given by SBR as 64 degrees. This is a little bit off as the difference is actually less than 1 degree.
Using simple trig, if we take the cos of 60 degrees (0.5 - near enough given the likely accuracy of SBRs measurement, Cos 61 degrees is 0.48)  and SBRs quoted length of what is the hypotenuse of his triangle which is 800 miles (16x the distance between London and Brighton) that gives the distance LD (D being the point on the flat Earths surface where the Sun would be seen overhead at the same time) as 400 miles.  So far so good.

Now we know that on the 13th July the Sun has a declination of +21 degrees. Therefore the Sun will actually be overhead on that date as seen from any point on the Earths surface which has a latitude of 21 degrees north. That can be directly verified by observation by anyone who happens to be located on the 21 degree north latitude circle on the 13th July during any year.

400 miles directly south from London takes us to a point in France just to the east of Saintes. Saintes has a latitude of 45 degrees N which means the Sun will actually be to the south of directly overhead by a considerable amount. Measurements will show for example that the Suns altitude is only 65 degrees at UK noon on 13th July as seen from 45 degrees north. According to SBR, the Sun should be directly overhead. The difference can be accounted for if we factor in that the Earth surface is curving away from a tangent line along the 400 miles distance considered.

Clearly SBR did not verify his conclusion by actually travelling the 400 miles from London to check to see if the Sun was indeed directly overhead as per his prediction.  Perhaps he was so sure in his belief that the Earth is flat that he felt no need to do so. The calculation to him was proof enough. Clearly not so Mr Rowbotham!
« Last Edit: October 12, 2019, 09:04:14 PM by TierraPlana »

#### AllAroundTheWorld

• 3321
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2019, 07:48:05 AM »
Metabunk did an experiment with people in lots of different locations which demonstrated that the results make no sense on a flat earth:

https://www.metabunk.org/flat-earth-debunked-by-measuring-angles-to-the-sun.t9118/

I have said multiple times on here that it would be easy to calculate the distance to the sun by making observations in a few different locations and triangulating - that is effectively what is done above and shows that the results are not consistent with a flat earth. It’s telling that there has been no (as far as I know) FE attempt to do this.
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2019, 08:23:42 AM »
Quote
Metabunk did an experiment with people in lots of different locations which demonstrated that the results make no sense on a flat earth:
The method doesn't work simply because the Earth is not flat.  You couldn't have a more clear and more straightforward way of demonstrating it. In SBRs day the verification was more difficult but in todays world it is a lot easier. I wonder what SBRs reaction would have been if he realised that contrary to his prediction, the Sun was not in fact directly overhead from a distance (LD=400 miles) away from London?

Using this method on that day (13th July) you would have to travel a further 24 degrees south to 21 degrees north latitude in order to put the Sun directly overhead. That would make the baseline of SBRs triangle at least twice as long as his quoted distance and put you inside the tropic of cancer. I challenge any FEer to explain why this single investigation does not debunk completely the belief that the Earth is flat.

Of course you can make diagrams and numbers tell you whatever you want them to but if they don't agree with physical, real world observations and measurements then you have a problem.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 09:52:13 AM by TierraPlana »

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2019, 03:59:23 PM »
Metabunk did an experiment with people in lots of different locations which demonstrated that the results make no sense on a flat earth:

https://www.metabunk.org/flat-earth-debunked-by-measuring-angles-to-the-sun.t9118/

I have said multiple times on here that it would be easy to calculate the distance to the sun by making observations in a few different locations and triangulating - that is effectively what is done above and shows that the results are not consistent with a flat earth. It’s telling that there has been no (as far as I know) FE attempt to do this.

Actually that link says that it works just fine on FE if light bends upwards.
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2019, 05:54:31 PM »
Quote
Actually that link says that it works just fine on FE if light bends upwards.

20 odd degrees is a heck of a bend Tom... what do you suggest might be causing light to bend 'upwards' by such an extent. An easier, more simple and likely explanation is surely that the Earths surface is curved?

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2019, 06:15:24 PM »
Quote
Actually that link says that it works just fine on FE if light bends upwards.

20 odd degrees is a heck of a bend Tom... what do you suggest might be causing light to bend 'upwards' by such an extent. An easier, more simple and likely explanation is surely that the Earths surface is curved?

If it was due to a curved earth then it should be possible to use multiple observations of the sun to triangulate it to a single point in space: https://wiki.tfes.org/NOAA_Solar_Calculator#Sun_Triangulation_Problem

There are also some pretty odd anomalies which seem to suggest that light is bending upwards. See the end of
https://wiki.tfes.org/Electromagnetic_Acceleration
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 06:20:33 PM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### Pete Svarrior

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##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2019, 06:16:11 PM »
what do you suggest might be causing light to bend 'upwards' by such an extent
It is expected that you will read up on the basics before posting here.

An easier, more simple and likely explanation is surely that the Earths surface is curved?
An "easy" and "simple" answer is not always the correct one.

<Parsifal> I like looking at Chinese Wikipedia with Noto installed
<Parsifal> I don't understand any of it but the symbols look nice

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2019, 06:37:24 PM »
Quote
It is expected that you will read up on the basics before posting here.

I wasn't the one who brought up the suggestion that light bends upwards.  That was Tom so I am simply asking him to explain why he thinks bending of light is a better explanation over the simple alternative that the Earths surface is curved. Am I doing wrong by asking him that?

Quote
An "easy" and "simple" answer is not always the correct one.

Can you offer a better explanation then other than the one I suggested?  I.e. that the Earths surface is curved.  That would make theory fit observation wouldn't it?

#### AllAroundTheWorld

• 3321
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2019, 06:58:13 PM »
Actually that link says that it works just fine on FE if light bends upwards.
What is your evidence for that effect? Because during the Bishop experiment you claim that:

Quote
23 miles away near the lighthouse. The entire beach is visible down to the water splashing upon the shore. Upon looking into the telescope I can see children running in and out of the water, splashing and playing. I can see people sun bathing at the shore and teenagers merrily throwing Frisbees to one another. I can see runners jogging along the water's edge with their dogs. From my vantage point the entire beach is visible.

So over 23 miles no bending of light is evident. Is your contention that it does bend over larger distances?
What experimental evidence do you have for that?
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2019, 07:39:13 PM »
The bending in EA takes place over thousands of miles. It is under two degrees per 100 miles as far as I can see. Terrestrial light may alternatively be going through a different gradient than celestial light.

The Moon Tilt Illusion is proof enough for me - https://wiki.tfes.org/Moon_Tilt_Illusion

We are given multiple contradicting explanations which don't really work, and appears to be predicted by EA.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 07:49:37 PM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### AllAroundTheWorld

• 3321
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2019, 08:00:28 PM »
The Moon Tilt Illusion is proof enough for me - https://wiki.tfes.org/Moon_Tilt_Illusion

We are given multiple contradicting explanations which don't really work, and appears to be predicted by EA.
I think "illusion" is the key word there. This is a genuinely interesting illusion, I've seen it myself and at first glance it does seem like the moon can't possibly be lit by the sun. But it is an illusion. All you have to do to prove that to yourself is to take a piece of string, told it tight in front of you and line it up so it forms a straight line perpendicular to the terminator on the moon and you will see that the string does indeed point at the sun. It admittedly doesn't look like it will, but it does. I have done this experiment myself. Bobby did too and showed a video of the result.
You could do this too, it would take you 5 minutes next time you see the illusion and it would clearly demonstrate that there is a straight line between the sun and moon. I see you reference this experiment on that Wiki page although I don't understand your hand waving away of it. If the terminator of the moon is not perpendicular to the direction of the sun then how could you hold a string straight between them and have it line up?
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2019, 09:59:22 PM »
Your explanation of "it's an illusion" is not a very satisfying mechanism.

If the Moon is in the East with the illuminated portion pointing straight upwards, and the Sun is half way into the horizon in the West, what would a string tell us about the mechanism?
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2019, 10:14:46 PM »
If the illuminated portion of the Moon is in the east and pointing straight up then you would be at the equator. Your description of the Sun being half way to the horizon in the west I would take to mean the elevation of the Sun is 45 degrees. (mid-way between zenith and horizon).  If the Moon was at first quarter it would also have an elevation of 45 degree in the east since the angular separation of the Sun and Moon would be 90 degrees.  That would make the terminator horizonal.

You wouldn't need a piece of string to confirm that.

I'm not entirely sure how that could be produced though if the FE model with the Sun and Moon circling above a flat Earth is correct.  You could never have situation where the illuminated half of the Moon was pointing straight up as far as I can tell.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2019, 10:17:14 PM by TierraPlana »

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2019, 03:44:03 AM »
The Moon doesn't only rise from the East at the equator:

http://www.umass.edu/sunwheel/pages/moonteaching.html

“ THE U.MASS. SUNWHEEL is an 8 year old stone circle -- a solar and lunar calendar and observatory located on the campus of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. The stone circle contains 14 stones 8'-10' tall, marking the cardinal directions, the directions along the horizon to the rising and setting Sun at the solstices and equinoxes, and the directions to the rising and setting Moon at major lunar standstill. ”

From Cornell University for the Northern Hemisphere:

The direction of Moonrise changes quite drastically over 14 days, moving over quite extreme ranges South to North.

Back to the string experiment:

https://astro.unl.edu/classaction/animations/lunarcycles/positionsdemonstrator.html

Moon Phases and the Horizon Diagram

"Provides a method of learning the correlation between the phase of the moon, the time of day, and the position of the moon in the sky."

So the illuminated portion of the Moon is pointing upwards while the Sun is at the horizon. The little man takes out his string and aligns it with the yellow path on the celestial sphere to connect the Moon and Sun. What does that prove to us?

« Last Edit: October 14, 2019, 04:18:22 AM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2019, 09:02:52 AM »
If you look at that diagram Tom I think you will find that the Moon (and indeed the Sun as well) always rises in the east as seen from the equator.

Due to the inclination of the Moons orbit of 5 degrees w.r.t the ecliptic it will sometimes be to the north of east by as much as 28 degrees and sometimes to the south of east by the same extent. But it does always rise in the east.

I would say your nice little flash animation link shows us very nicely how the Moon phases are due to reflected Sunlight and how the Moon orbits the Earth. It doesn't take into account the 5 degree inclination of the Moons orbit with the ecliptic. So in the animation you would get a solar eclipse every month! Otherwise it is very good.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2019, 11:01:36 AM by TierraPlana »

#### AllAroundTheWorld

• 3321
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2019, 09:33:45 AM »
Your explanation of "it's an illusion" is not a very satisfying mechanism.
Isn’t that your mechanism for why the sun stays the same angular size despite the fact that with the distance varying so much during the day in your model, it wouldn’t?
Your entire explanation for that is “it’s an illusion”?
The thing here is you can easily demonstrate it’s an illusion. All you need is a piece of string.

Quote
If the Moon is in the East with the illuminated portion pointing straight upwards, and the Sun is half way into the horizon in the West, what would a string tell us about the mechanism?

What the string tells us is that the perception that the light is bending in some way is an illusion. There IS a straight line between the sun and moon. If there wasn’t you wouldn’t be able to hold a straight piece of string along that line.
And if it wasn’t an illusion then wouldn’t the light have to bend downwards to illuminate the moon the way it appears to be lit? Doesn’t EA postulate that the light bends upwards?
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2019, 04:13:23 PM »
If you have a tree to the east of you and a cabin to the west of you, you are essentially claiming that you can lay down and pull out your string, connect the two, and prove that the tree is pointing at the cabin. What kind of argument is that?

If you hold the string way out in front of you, you can also make the illuminated portion of the moon, or the direction of the tree in the above example, point off into space and not connect to the opposite body.
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### AllAroundTheWorld

• 3321
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2019, 07:36:22 PM »
If you have a tree to the east of you and a cabin to the west of you, you are essentially claiming that you can lay down and pull out your string, connect the two, and prove that the tree is pointing at the cabin. What kind of argument is that?

I genuinely don’t know how a tree can “point” at a cabin. What are you talking about?

Quote
If you hold the string way out in front of you, you can also make the illuminated portion of the moon, or the direction of the tree in the above example, point off into space and not connect to the opposite body.

Well, this is what makes this illusion interesting. Because if you look at the terminator of the moon in these instances and look at where the sun is then it does indeed appear as though the light must be bending somehow. Either that or the sun can’t be illuminating the moon.
But if you hold a piece of string out in front of you perpendicular to the terminator you will find that contrary to appearances the string does point at the sun. I have done this myself. I suggest you have a go and prove it to yourself.
If you try this and find that the string does point off into space and not at the sun then please document that and we can discuss further.

But, again, given the apparent angle of the terminator and the apparent position of the sun if the light is bending then surely it must be bending downwards, contrary to EA’s claim that it bends upwards.
If you are making your claim without evidence then we can discard it without evidence.

Nearly all flat earthers agree the earth is not a globe.

#### Tom Bishop

• Zetetic Council Member
• 7146
• Flat Earth Believer
##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2019, 08:01:27 PM »
If you have a tree to the east of you and a cabin to the west of you, you are essentially claiming that you can lay down and pull out your string, connect the two, and prove that the tree is pointing at the cabin. What kind of argument is that?

I genuinely don’t know how a tree can “point” at a cabin. What are you talking about?

You are laying down on the ground and see a tree on one side of your vision, and a cabin on the other. You take out the string, connect them together, and have "proved" that the tree is pointing at the cabin.

That is exactly what the "string experiment" is. You are proclaiming "It's an illusion, see proof. The Moon is pointing at the sun and the string experiment broke the illusion!" In reality it did no such thing.

Take the string and hold it out an arm's length at the tree and the tree will project into space. The same occurs with the moon.

If you are laying down on the ground and see the moon pointing upwards on one side of your vision and see the sun setting on the other, a string connecting the two will no more prove that the moon is pointing at the sun than it would prove that a tree is pointing at a cabin.

The upwardly pointing Moon in the east is directly anagolous to an upwardly pointing tree to your east. The Sun on the horizon is directly anagolous to a cabin to your west. The whole string thing is an erroneous thought experiment originated by a desperate astronomer
« Last Edit: October 14, 2019, 08:15:55 PM by Tom Bishop »
"The biggest problem in astronomy is that when we look at something in the sky, we don’t know how far away it is" — Pauline Barmby, Ph.D., Professor of Astronomy

#### TierraPlana

##### Re: Distance to the Sun - Rowbothams investigation
« Reply #19 on: October 14, 2019, 08:41:04 PM »
Just as an aside, where is this tree, hut, cabin, bits of string discussion heading?  What is it trying to prove. Wake me up when we are back on topic (Rowbothams distance to Sun experiment).