Tom Bearden and overunity: what's going on?

Check the site and help me out here. Do we count utilizing the vacuum potential as a perpetual motion machine or what? How is an “overunity generator” not a PMM?

Someone is handing me this and I’m desiring some help explaining it. Elsewhere in those pages lie the accusation of the Japanese Mafia seeking to keep this stuff quiet (well, better than the oil companies, I suppose) so what exactly is the deal here?

Other links:

Just so we’re all clear: my skepticism is high.

Mmmm, power generation from permanent magnets… sign me up! (I assume that the inventor is in the final, critical stage and only needs willing investors, who will, of course, be richly rewarded?)

Where do I send the cheque? Same place as last time?

There’s a patent for it. I skimmed the exposition and it is all about extracting energy from the vacuum. Seems like absolute hogwash to me, but I don’t know shit from shinola when it comes to this stuff, I take the word of our fabulous dopers.

Searching the web on this kind of stuff gives one endless cites of claims. But I find nothing other than this guy supporting his stuff, so I don’t know what to do. I’ve got someone in another forum thinking the entire world is about to change and I don’t know what to tell him.

I’m not sure that there’s any way you can help someone who is convinced; ‘zero point energy’, perpetual motion machines and overunity devices made out of magnets and crystals have been the mainstay of crackpots and scammers for very many years - this is not likely to be an exception.

erislover wrote:

You can start with some of these links, probably, and move on from there, I’m sure. I got to that place through links from James Randi’s site, since he’s been commenting on Bearden’s nuttiness for quite some time already.

Randi! Damn it, I knew I was forgetting somebody.

The ‘free energy’ community is still waiting for Bearden to close the loop; to have his MEG power itself continuously with no batteries etc. in the system. As far as I know this has yet to happen. When it does he can get loads of publicity by winning the several “Free Energy Machine” prizes currently available.

Bearden got started on the MEG after witnessing Floyd Sweet’s “VTA” device years ago. Sweet’s device supposedly could run a bank of 100watt lamps. It also supposedly lost significant weight when a much larger electrical load was connected. Search for Floyd “sparky” Sweet and his VTA or “Vacuum Triode Amplifier” and you’ll find lots of crackpot pages including my own. Unfortunately Sweet died without releasing his secret. Bearden and numerous others are trying to duplicate his device (which was a couple of big ceramic permanent-magnet slabs with several coils of wire wound around them in various orientations.)