Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Floating Wind Turbines

This is a compelling bit of technology that if it can be made reliable, and I see little reason why not, will tap huge energy resources without creating inconvenient footprints. More interestingly, the economics should be superior to anything likely to ever be built on land. We may even be able to go the extra mile and tap current and tidal energy with the same hardware.

What makes it compelling is that it can be replicated a million times with no fuss whatsoever. It is very much like having dams built on demand and these will not be small machines.

The technology lends itself to continuous heavy manufacturing methods which can bring gross costs down substantially to make it very competitive with any one off engineered solution.

It will be interesting to watch this develop. It is like the early years in the wind turbine business were there were few outside believers. But once it is proven, the orders become unending.

I am sure New England and New York would love to have a few thousands of these in the Gulf Stream right now.


Floating Wind Turbines

According to a 2006 report by the U.S. Department of Energy, General Electric and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, offshore wind resources on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the United States exceed the current electricity generation of the entire U.S. power industry. NASA has also been investigating ocean wind strengths worldwide, using the QuikSCAT satellite.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080709210529.htm

Researchers at MIT and elsewhere have been investigating the feasibility of "tension-leg" platforms for wind turbines, a technology that oil companies have been using for deep-water rigs. The structures would be assembled at a shipyard and placed on large floating cylinders that are ballasted with high-density concrete (to keep the structure from tipping over) and then tugged out to sea. Once in location, steel cables would be attached to the platform, anchoring it to the sea floor.

The MIT researchers claim that large turbines located far offshore could eventually generate cheaper power than both land based wind farms and near-offshore ones (even taking into account the increased cost of longer underground electricity transmission cables). Part of the cost advantage is the higher capacity factor achieved due to more consistent offshore winds - potentially averaging between 40 percent and 50 percent compared with 30 percent or less with land based turbines.

Some offshore wind farms could also have advantages in terms of proximity to large coastal cities compared to wind farms in remote areas, which require grid transmission upgrades to transport the power to places where it is consumed. Floating offshore wind farms also avoid bottlenecks in the supply of marine construction equipment such as pile drivers and cranes that may hamper rapid expansion of shallow offshore wind structures (however they may instead compete for some resources with offshore oil exploration and production, which could be problematical in the short to medium term).

A number of companies are active in the area of floating offshore wind technology - primarily Blue H Technologies, StatOil Hydro and SWAY.

Blue H Technologies

Blue H Technologies is a Dutch company that launched their first test platform at Tricase off Italy's southern coast late last year. The company has also announced plans to install another test turbine off Massachusetts.

The Blue H test platform in Italy is a tension-leg platform - a conventional offshore oil and gas platform design that floats below the surface, held in place by chains running to steel or concrete anchors on the seabed. The platform is located 10 km offshore and hosts an 80-kilowatt wind turbine which is mounted with sensors to record the wave and wind forces experienced by the equipment.

Blue H is now constructing a commercial wind farm for the Tricase site, which will have an installed capacity of 92 MW.

Blue H's design is unusual in that the turbine has a two-bladed rotor rather than the conventional three-blade design used elsewhere in.
Technology Review has quoted Martin Jakubowski, Blue H cofounder and chief technology officer, as saying that "the noise and jarringly high rotation speeds that made two-bladers a loser on land are either irrelevant or a plus offshore" and that the fast rotation is "less susceptible to interference from the back-and-forth swing of the platform under wave action" and means less torque, resulting in a lighter structure (Blue H's 2.5-megawatt turbine will weigh 97 tons - 53 tons lighter than the lightest machine of the same power output on the market).

Tech Review also quotes Jakubowski as estimating that Blue H's wind farms will "deliver wind energy for seven to eight cents per kilowatt-hour, roughly matching the current cost of natural gas-fired generation and conventional onshore wind energy".

StatOil Hydro

Norwegian oil and gas producer StatoilHydro and Germany's Siemens (a major wind-turbine producer) are partnering in a project to build a commercial-scale floating wind farm about 10 kilometers offshore from
Karmøy on Norway's southwestern tip.

StatoilHydro initially plans to operate a 2.3 MW wind turbine atop a conventional oil and gas platform, and is hoping for this to be operational in
late 2009. Unlike the Blue H design, StatOilHydro is using traditional wind turbines.

The company believes floating wind farms are the way of the future, with a company spokesman saying that there are a declining number of sites available onshore and in shallow waters and citing regions without a shallow continental shelf like California, Japan and Norway where traditional offshore wind is not possible.

StatOilHydro says that deepwater wind power will be expensive in the initial stages but that the economics could eventually rival those of conventional wind power.

If deep offshore wind power in the North Sea proves to be successful it would become a major component on the planned
European Supergrid, which backers hope will link up the region's power networks and allow a much higher proportion of renewable energy in future (possibly entirely fossil-free, as it will need to become eventually), including solar power from Spain and North Africa, wind from the North Sea and Ireland, biogas from central Europe and tidal power from the UK.

SWAY, based in Bergen, Norway, plans to field a prototype of its floating wind turbine in 2010. SWAY's platform is basically a spar buoy that can rise and fall gently with wave action, requiring less anchoring than the tension-leg platform. The buoy, mounted on a column nearly 200 meters tall, is held in place by a 2,400-ton gravel ballast. A three-bladed turbine is used, but, unlike conventional onshore turbines, it faces downwind rather upwind to better accommodate heeling of the tower, which may make it more effective in rougher waters than alternative designs.

The Simmons Plan

The cost estimated for Simmons' plan is $5 billion per gigawatt — more than double the amount that T. Boone Pickens’ now
delayed wind farm in Texas is supposed to cost.

This seems high if the cost savings expected by the companies mentioned above eventuate, with the StatOilHydro experiment probably being the best guide, with the North Sea facing similar weather challenges to those experienced off New England.

Winter winds in the Gulf of Maine carry as much as eight times more energy as summer breezes, meaning maximum power is available during periods of greatest demand. About 80 percent of Maine residents use oil to heat their homes. The average family uses about 1,000 gallons, or 3,785 liters a year - when prices are around $4 a gallon ($1 a litre) this consumes about one-tenth of the average family's annual income, leading Simmons to declare "If we don't do this, we're [eventually] going to have to evacuate most of Maine".

Seen in that light, even an expensive offshore wind farm is better than the alternative.

As an added bonus, construction and maintenance of the structures will bring valuable job opportunities to a region hard hit by the decline of the fishing industry

Lost Millenium by Florin Diacu

I am working my way through a book written by Florin Diacu titled ‘The lost Millennium’. It tackles the fairly invisible debate over the accuracy of traditional chronology and the challenges to that orthodoxy. I had heard rumbles that our chronology may be a thousand years too long. I think that we all find that much too hard to swallow, simply because any point in history is described by a cloud of sources, objects, and dating tests that add up to a strong likelihood.

There are unsettling gaps, but we underestimate the difficulty in maintaining records and the existence of a regime interested in keeping records in the first place. We underestimate the loss of language. Can you imagine sitting in a Viking’s hall and taking notes in Latin, then getting a letter from a hundred miles away explaining local intelligence while your host has no ability to read any of it? How paranoid can you get?

Seen that way, any restoration had to take a lot of time.

The problem with gluing together chronology is the gaps, not just in time but in geography. The discovery of the importance of 1159 BCE as the effective end of the European Bronze Age stabilizes a whole group of regional chronologies by putting aside a lot of niggling concerns.

We can now say with assurance that Homer’s world was a couple of generations before 1159 BCE giving enough time for tale to be told and spread throughout the cultural area by sea and to reach Athens. It also puts the Argonauts in the Atlantic and opens the possibility of a completely new and more creditable interpretation. We now have access to the Amazon and the Mississippi as operational locales.

The problem is that we lack other such absolutes in the chronology game. We have far too many maybes.

We have had good global records for perhaps four hundred years. We have had good European and Chinese information for a thousand years. All this means is that records stop been lost outright. Further back, the inevitable gaps pop up and histories are simply missing.

For all of the Americas, we are now recovering fragments of Mayan history, and the same is true for the rest of the old world. It is also easy to get fooled by the depth of evidence of a regime or society. Look at the bible. This is the only extant historical record that survives from the Bronze Age. Other documents take the form of rituals, horoscopes and IOUs. We then must jump hundreds of years to the Greeks and their Roman successors. What happened to those other guys?

The archeological record is disclosing a global striving for civilization everywhere possible throughout the past 5,000 years. Everywhere a local chieftain built a palace and commanded his retainers. This made record keeping a true challenge and it obviously failed most of the time.

Diacu’s book surveys the research undertaken by a number of scholars including the original creators of our present chronology ` regime, and Newton in particular who all struggled with attempting to link written reports with astronomical probabilities. Everyone ever involved has been far too often inconclusive.

Most disconcerting are horoscopes depicting recent times yet associated historically a millennia earlier. If these types of time changes actually held up, history would be in for a massive rewrite.

What motivated the book were the writings of Fomenko and his associates who have argued that a thousand years are missing. Most of what Fomenko says is not too compelling and a lot is clearly wrong also. He does dig up a number of unresolved conflicts and also establishes the existence of a second conflict in historical methodology. That is that practitioners are discarding non conforming evidence. Over time, this bias will strip important evidence and patterns out of the data leaving only a self selected data set. This is not a problem in the physical sciences were replication soon catches up to you. This is a giant problem in history were the data cannot be easily be repeated.

The book is still an interesting read and introduces us to a lot of obscure history. However, I would advise reading the last chapter on consensus first to give you direction.

It is also clear that the issues raised are in the process of been resolved largely by modern carbon dating, that now can be extended to remnants of papyrus.

So we still can rely on our known chronology as long as we keep a weather eye out for unpleasant surprises and learn to ask why there is a lack of evidence when asking historic questions. I have asked this question many times while making a wide range of historic and archeological conjectures. I have then watched the evidence slowly emerge.

Bronze Age Collapse

I have posted extensively on the collapse caused by the 1159 BC Hekla blast and tsunami that destroyed the city of Atlantis at Gibraltar. This entry from Wikipedia gather together the known fallout from this single event as is known by today’s scholarship.

Of course, this scholarship continues to ignore the clear evidence of a huge copper trade between the Americas and the Old world. Bronze manufacturing required strong local sponsorship in the form of the palace economies described herein. These factories were the sub factories of a global copper trade that passed through the Atlanteans.

I suspect that the Atlantean fleet of perhaps a real ten thousand ships like they love to claim in Homer was making itself felt along the Egyptian coast in the years prior to the Hekla blast. They had unity and a system of confederate palace states. Recall that these were not particularly large cities so much a palace household and retainers. The surrounding population surely benefited and was certainly ruled by this caste of merchant princes who traded value for value. That all ended abruptly with the loss of the copper trade. These palaces were all then overthrown.

More critically, the surviving populations in Europe faced a twenty year collapse of their livelihoods and those that could took ship and joined in a sea borne migration into the Eastern Mediterranean. This was likely expressed as colonization including Gaza, Athens and Carthage, where already established factories were in position to absorb the refugees. We may never develop the details, but the advent of a surplus of desperate pirates surely explains the swift collapse of the many isolated trade palaces.

The other putative possibilities of causation are simply insufficient and were all easily handled in the course of business as usual. An influx of the desperate from the north was another matter and these guys were the original pro0viders of the best weapons. Is it any surprise that they were able to make the Egyptian state accommodate them? And recall that this was the single largest and strongest state in front of them.

Imagine a group of refugees landing in New Jersey and forcing the USA to make room for them? Pretty good trick even at a three thousand year remove.

This entry also confirms that iron was not seriously used until the loss of the copper trade. This clearly implies that the copper trade and its control was the road to wealth. Bronze made excellent weapons that were not likely surpassed by iron for centuries. They were simple to cast and work harden in the forge whereas iron needed to be laboriously converted into steel in very small batches.

In fact steel making did not change at all right into the industrial age which is why cannons were first made from bronze, then cast iron and then, very late in the day from steel. What this means is that had copper been available, the use of bronze would certainly have continued centuries more.
This item gives a really good snapshot of the time and place and is very consistent with the implied conjectures.

Bronze Age collapse --- From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Bronze Age collapse is the name given by those historians who see the transition from the
Late Bronze Age to the Early Iron Age, as violent, sudden and culturally disruptive, expressed by the collapse of palace economies of the Aegean and Anatolia, which were replaced after a hiatus by the isolated village cultures of the Dark Ages period of history of the Ancient Near East. The Bronze Age collapse may be seen in the context of a technological history that saw the slow, comparatively continuous spread of iron-working technology in the region, beginning with precocious iron-working in what is now Romania in the 13th and 12th centuries.[1] The cultural collapse of the Mycenaean kingdoms, the Hittite Empire in Anatolia and Syria, and the Egyptian Empire in Syria and Canaan, bringing the scission of long-distance trade contacts and sudden eclipse of literacy, occurred between 1206 and 1150 BCE. In the first phase of this period, almost every city between Troy and Gaza was violently destroyed, and often left unoccupied thereafter (for example, Hattusas, Mycenae, Ugarit).

The gradual end of the
Dark Age that ensued saw the rise of settled Neo-Hittite Aramaean kingdoms of the mid-10th century BCE, and the rise of the Neo-Assyrian Empire.

Regional evidence

Anatolia

Main article:
Downfall of the Hittite Empire
Every site important during the preceding Late Bronze Age shows a destruction layer, and it appears that here civilization did not recover to the same level as that of the Hittites for another thousand years. Hattusas, the Hittite capital, was burned and abandoned, and never reoccupied. Karaoglan was burned and the corpses left unburied. Troy was destroyed at least twice, before being abandoned until Roman times.

Cyprus

The catastrophe separates
Late Cypriot II (LCII) from the LCIII period, with the sacking and burning of the sites of Enkomi, Kition, and Sinda, may have occurred twice, before being abandoned. A number of sites, though not destroyed, were also abandoned. Kokkinokremos was a short-lived settlement, where the presence of various caches concealed by smiths suggests that none ever returned to reclaim the treasures, suggesting they were killed or enslaved.

Syria

Syrian sites previously showed evidence of trade links with Egypt and the Aegean in the Late Bronze Age. Evidence at Ugarit shows that the destruction there occurred after the reign of Merenptah, and even the fall of
Chancellor Bay. Letters on clay tablets found baked in the conflagration of the destruction of the city speak of attack from the sea, and a letter from Alashiya (Cyprus) speaks of cities already being destroyed from attackers who came by sea. It also speaks of the Ugarit fleet being absent, patrolling the coast.

Levant
Egyptian evidence shows that from the reign of Horemheb, wandering Shasu were more problematic. Ramesses II campaigned against them, pursuing them as far as Moab, where he established a fortress, after the near collapse at the Battle of Kadesh. These Shasu were problematic, particularly when during the reign of Merneptah, they threatened the "Way of Horus" north from Gaza. Evidence shows that Deir Alla (Succoth) was destroyed after the reign of Queen Twosret. The destroyed site of Lachish was briefly reoccupied by squatters and an Egyptian garrison, during the reign of Ramesses III. All centres along the sea route, now being called Via Maris, from Gaza north were destroyed, and evidence shows Gaza, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Akko, and Jaffa were burned and not reoccupied for up to thirty years. Inland Hazor, Bethel, Beit Shemesh, Eglon, Debir, and other sites were destroyed. Refugees escaping the collapse of coastal centres may have fused with incoming nomadic and Anatolian elements to begin the growth of terraced hillside hamlets in the highlands region, that was associated with the later development of the state of Israel.

Greece

None of the Mycenaean palaces of the Late Bronze Age survived, with destruction being heaviest at palaces and fortified sites. Up to 90% of small sites in the Peloponnese were abandoned, suggesting a major depopulation. The End Bronze Age collapse marked the start of what has been called the
Greek Dark Ages, which lasted for more than 400 years. Other cities, like Athens, continued to be occupied, but with a more local sphere of influence, limited evidence of trade and an impoverished culture, from which it took centuries to recover.

Mesopotamia
The cities of Norsuntepe, Emar and Carchemish were destroyed, and the Assyrians narrowly escaped an invasion by Mushki tribes during the reign of Tiglath-Pileser I. With the spread of Ahhlamu or Aramaeans, control of the Babylonian and Assyrian regions extended barely beyond the city limits. Babylon was sacked by the Elamites under Shutruk-Nahhunte, and lost control of the Diyala valley.

Egypt

After apparently surviving for a while, the Egyptian Empire collapsed in the mid twelfth century BCE (during the reign of Ramesses VI). Previously the Merneptah Stele spoke of attacks from Lybians, with associated people of Ekwesh, Shekelesh, Lukka, Shardana and Tursha or Teresh, and a Canaanite revolt, in the cities of Ashkelon, Yenoam and the people of Israel. A second attack during the reign of Ramesses III involved Peleset, Tjeker, Shardana and Denyen.

Conclusion

Robert Drews describes the collapse as "the worst disaster in ancient history, even more calamitous than the collapse of the Western Roman Empire".
[2] A number of people have spoken of the cultural memories of the disaster as stories of a "lost golden age". Hesiod for example spoke of Ages of Gold, Silver and Bronze, separated from the modern harsh cruel world of the Age of Iron by the Age of Heroes.

Nature and causes of destruction

As part of the
Late Bronze Age-Early Iron Age Dark Ages, it was a period associated with the collapse of central authorities, a general depopulation, particularly of highly urban areas, the loss of literacy in Anatolia and the Aegean, and its restriction elsewhere, the disappearance of established patterns of long-distance international trade, increasingly vicious intra-elite struggles for power, and reduced options for the elite if not for the general mass of population.

There are various theories put forward to explain the situation of collapse, many of them compatible with each other.

Earthquakes

Amos Nur shows how earthquakes tend to occur in "sequences" or "storms" where a major earthquake above 6.5 on the
Richter magnitude scale can in later months or years set off second or subsequent earthquakes along the weakened fault line. He shows that when a map of earthquake occurrence is superimposed on a map of the sites destroyed in the Late Bronze Age, there is a very close correspondence. [3]

Migrations and raids

Ekrem Akurgal, Gustav Lehmann and Fritz Schachermeyer, following the views of Gaston Maspero have argued on the basis of the wide spread findings of Naue II-type swords coming from South Eastern Europe, and Egyptian records of "northerners from all the lands"[4]

The Ugarit correspondence draws attention to such groups as the mysterious Sea Peoples. Equally, translation of the preserved Linear B documents in the Aegean, just before the collapse, demonstrates a rise in piracy and slave raiding, particularly coming from Anatolia. Egyptian fortresses along the Libyan coast, constructed and maintained after the reign of Ramesses II were constructed to reduce raiding.

Ironworking

Leonard R. Palmer suggested that iron, whilst inferior to bronze weapons, was in more plentiful supply and so allowed larger armies of iron users to overwhelm the smaller armies of bronze-using
maryannu chariotry.[5] This argument has been weakened of late with the finding that the shift to iron occurred after the collapse, not before. It now seems that the disruption of long distance trade, an aspect of "systems collapse", cut easy supplies of tin, making bronze impossible to make. Older implements were recycled and then iron substitutes were used.

On the other hand, technology cannot be so quickly dismissed as a factor. The invention of the technology of metallurgy is not generally regarded as a Paradigm Shift, in a class with the technologies of agriculture, city-building, industry and electronics. Yet metalworking had a profound impact on the course of mankind's development. Warfare on the scale with which we are familiar today was not possible when sharpened sticks and flint points and blades were the only weapons available. The first bronze swords and armor were surely regarded as "weapons of mass destruction" by the last inhabitants of stone age cities because of the carnage they made possible.

Still, the very nature of bronze, an alloy of copper and tin, forces at least a grudging equilbrium on man's violent nature. Deposits of copper ore and tin ore almost never occur in the same region. In order to make bronze, two cities a fair distance apart must maintain peaceful relations and trade raw materials with each other.

Iron metallurgy destroyed this equilibrium. Only one ore is required to make iron artifacts, and deposits of it are abundant. The only trick to smelting iron is the creation of hitherto unimaginably high temperatures, because the melting point of iron is hundreds of degrees higher than that of copper and tin. But once that information became well known, there was nothing to stop even the most uncivilized of the remaining Neolithic tribes from arming their warriors, proclaiming themselves "kingdoms," and attacking the cities. Even worse, the cities were no longer dependent on each other for complementary ores, and had no more reason to maintain peaceful relations.

The Iron Age may not have been the cause of the collapse of civilization in its first place of origin, but it is difficult to dismiss iron as a possible reason for its slow recovery.

Drought

Barry Weiss
[6], using the Palmer Drought Index for 35 Greek, Turkish, and Middle Eastern weather stations, showed that a drought of the kinds that persisted from January 1972 would have affected all of the sites associated with the Late Bronze Age collapse. Drought could have easily precipitated or hastened socio-economic problems and led to wars. More recently Brian Fagan, has shown how the diversion of mid-winter storms from the Atlantic were diverted to travel north of the Pyrenees and the Alps, bringing wetter conditions to Central Europe, but drought to the Eastern Mediterranean, was associated with the Late Bronze Age collapse[7]

General systems collapse

Main article:
Societal collapse

A general systems collapse has been put forward as an explanation for the reversals in culture that occurred between the Urnfield culture of the 12-13th centuries BCE and the rise of the Celtic Hallstatt culture in the 9th and 10th centuries.[8] This theory may, however, simply beg the question as to whether this collapse was the cause of or the effect of the Bronze Age collapse being discussed. General Systems Collapse theories have been pioneered by Joseph Tainter[9] who shows how social declines in return to complexity leads often to collapse to simpler forms of society.

In the specific context of the Middle East a variety of factors - including population rise, soil degradation, drought, cast bronze weapon and iron production technologies - conceivably could have combined to push the relative price of weaponry compared to arable land to a level that ultimately proved to be beyond the control of traditional warrior aristocracies.

Changes in warfare

Robert Drews argues
[10] that the appearance of massed infantry, using newly developed weapons and armor, such as cast rather than forged spearheads and long swords, a revolutionizing cut-and-thrust weapon,[11] and javelins, the appearance of bronze foundries itself suggesting "that mass production of bronze artifacts was suddenly important in the Aegean". Homer uses "spears" as a virtual synonym for "warrior" suggesting the continued importance of the spear in combat. Such new weaponry, furnished to a proto-hoplite model who were able to withstand attacks of massed chariotry, destabilized states that were based upon the use of chariots by the ruling class and precipitated an abrupt social collapse when raiders and/or infantry mercenaries were able to conquer, loot, and burn the cities.[12][1][2](-5-)

References

^ See A. Stoia and the other essays in M.L. Stig Sørensen and R. Thomas, eds., The Bronze Age—Iron Age Transition in Europe (Oxford) 1989, and T.H. Wertime and J.D. Muhly, The Coming of the Age of Iron (New Haven) 1980.
^ Drew 1993:1 quotes Fernand Braudel's assessment that the Eastern Mediterranean cultures returned almost to a starting-point ("plan zéro"), "L'Aube", in Braudel, F. (Ed) (1977), La Mediterranee: l'espace et l'histoire (Paris)
^ Nur, Amos and Cline, Eric; (2000) "Poseidon's Horses: Plate Tectonics and Earthquake Storms in the Late Bronze Age Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean", Journ. of Archael. Sc. No 27 pps.43-63 - http://srb.stanford.edu/nur/EndBronzeage.pdf
^ Robbins, Manuel (2001) Collapse of the Bronze Age: the story of Greece, Troy, Israel, Egypt and Peoples of the Sea" (Authors Choice Press)
^ Palmer, Leonard R (1962) Mycenaeans and Minoans: Aegean Prehistory in the Light of the Linear B Tablets. (New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1962)
^ Weiss, Barry: (1982) "The decline of Late Bronze Age civilization as a possible response to climatic change" in Climatic Change ISSN 0165-0009 (Paper) 1573-1480 (Online), Volume 4, Number 2, June 1982, pps 173 - 198
^ Fagan, Brian M. (2003), "The Long Summer: How Climate Changed Civilization (Basic Books)
^ http://www.iol.ie/~edmo/linktoprehistory.html - a page about the history of Castlemagner, on the web page of the local historical society
^ Tainter, Joseph (1976)"The Collapse of Complex Societies" (Cambridge University Press)
^ Drews pp192ff.
^ The Naue Type II sword, introduced from the eastern Alps and Carpathians ca 1200, quickly established itself and became the only sword in use during the eleventh century; iron was substituted for bronze without essential redesign (Drews 1993:194.
^ Drews, R. (1993) The End of the Bronze Age: Changes in Warfare and the Catastrophe ca. 1200 B.C. (Princeton 1993).
Oliver Dickinson, The Aegean from Bronze Age to Iron Age: Continuity and Change Between the Twelfth and Eighth Centuries BC Routledge (2007),
ISBN 978-0415135900.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

2008 Winter Sea Ice Data

This catches us up on the apparent total impact generated by the warming that took place in 2007. It was hardly obvious at the time, but all that warm water ripped into the ability of the sea ice to accrete. A lot less than normal was thus produced this past winter.

Those conditions do not exist this winter, and we are been subjected to a full press arctic chill. It is reasonable to anticipate a full season’s ice production this winter, if not even an increase. 2007 showed us just how quickly the sea ice can be reduced with the right conditions. Had the conditions of 2007 continued, then all the ice would have been easily removed by 2012, as then projected. Once again the weather has changed. Expect to complain about cold winters for a decade at least.

Of course diehards are already claiming that global warming is now preventing the next ice age.

Right now, the right question should be how much further this sudden cooling downswing has to go before it plateaus. Notice I did not say rebound. Rising seems to take a very long time and likely averages less than a tenth of a degree per year, and there is no assurance that it will climb as high as this time.

It would be nice to link this process directly to solar radiation with a high degree of real certainty. That way it would become possible to model other effects properly including CO2. This time around, it looks like the CO2 enthusiasts jumped on the wrong trend and are now having it thrown back in their faces.

http://www.earthportal.org/news/?p=2031

Posted on December 19th, 2008

ScienceDaily (Nov. 3, 2008) — Last winter, the thickness of sea ice in large parts of the Arctic fell by nearly half a metre (19 per cent) compared with the average thickness of the previous five winters. This followed the dramatic 2007 summer low when Arctic ice extent dropped to its lowest level since records began.

Up until last winter, the thickness of Arctic sea ice showed a slow downward trend during the previous five winters, but after the summer 2007 record low extent, the thickness of the ice also nose-dived. What is concerning is that sea ice is not just receding but it is also thinning.

Some scientists blamed the record summer 2007 ice extent low on unusually warm weather conditions over the Arctic, but this summer, sea ice extent reached the second lowest level since records began, even though the Arctic had a relatively cool summer. Dr Katharine Giles, who led the study and is based at the Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling at University College London – part of the National Centre for Earth Observation, says: “This summer’s low ice extent doesn’t seem to have been driven by warm weather, so the question is, was last winter’s thinning behind it?”

The team of researchers, including Dr Seymour Laxon and Andy Ridout, used satellites to measure sea ice thickness over the Arctic from 2002 to 2008. Winter sea ice in the Arctic is around two and half metres thick on average. Ice thickness can be calculated from the time it takes a radar pulse to travel from a satellite to the surface of the ice and back again.

The research - reported in Geophysical Research Letters - showed that last winter the average thickness of sea ice over the whole Arctic fell by 26cm (10 per cent) compared with the average thickness of the previous five winters, but sea ice in the western Arctic lost around 49cm of thickness. This region of the Arctic saw the North-West passage become ice free and open to shipping for the first time in 30 years during the summer of 2007.

The team is the first to measure ice thickness throughout the Arctic winter, from October to March, over more than half of the Arctic, using the European Space Agency’s Envisat satellite. Before this, Christian Haas of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, Germany, had discovered thinner ice in a small region around the North Pole. Whilst the overall loss of older, thicker ice led researchers to speculate that Arctic sea ice had probably thinned, this is the first time scientists have been able to say for definite that the ice thinning was widespread and occurred in areas of both young and old ice.

“The extent of sea ice in the Arctic is down to a number of factors, including warm weather melting it as well as currents and the wind blowing it around, so it’s important to know how ice thickness is changing as well as the extent of the ice,” added Giles.

Second Mortgage Default Wave

60 minutes on Sunday a couple of weeks back shared with us the problem with the second wave of mortgage defaults been precipitated by mortgages with built in resets. It is ugly and the scale of the problem is easily as large as the subprime portfolio we have just digested. My own thoughts on this matter are that this portfolio will turn out to be a lot more financeable than anyone expects.

The reason for this is that the interest rates have sunk so low that the monthly payment should still be affordable to most borrowers. Of course, outright speculators who have no hope of a profit remaining and are certainly underwater will be walking. That is why some high rise condo buildings are empty.

The question now is how do we ensure that this possibility is fully exploited? A federal guarantee is one option for say ninety percent of the face of the mortgage. All this ensures that a large percentage of current homeowners remain homeowners and prevents this fresh inventory from entering the market.

That leaves the nasty problem of what to do with the inventory now underwater. We are still left with the option of going to a mark to market program that accepts a prices point anniversary date and refinances fifty percent of the property at going rates while exchanging the balance of the old mortgage for a fifty percent equity stake in the property.

This method still has the potential of resolving all the bad paper and can be also used as a tool to resell the entire property inventory that the banks are now stuck with. More critically it places a floor on the housing market and eliminates the entire overhang as quickly as possible. Otherwise this overhang will be squeezing the market for several years and I am been optimistic.

The necessary money is already largely in place and certainly more can be added. I would also expect that this drastic move would be swiftly rewarded by rising housing prices and a swift recovery of homeowner equity resulting in profitable buyouts of the remaining bank owned equity. In fact, I would expect that this procedure would become standard in the industry as a preferred alternative to foreclosure.

The problem with all this is that it needs to be mandated through legislation and carefully overseen. It cannot happen otherwise because of various conflicting rules.

The current scenario is unfolding in slow motion, one foreclosure at a time. This means that the end buyers are monitoring capital deterioration that they now expect to continue for at least two years. By going to a mark to market strategy, this is ended and the capital shortfall is recognized and made up. The institution is making money and rebuilding capital the next day. I think this is very doable once the complexities are fully understood and clarified.

Monetization of Global Pollution

For the past forty plus years, there has been a concerted effort to resolve the pollution problems of industry and agriculture. One underlying problem has emerged over and over again. It is that the actual decisions are been made by people who are simply unqualified to make those decisions, or worse, are selling an engineered solution whose merit is based primarily on its ownership.

Over and over again, better ways exist but are not deployed because those with their hand on the till cannot profit. Twenty years ago, I was led into surveying the nascent soil remediation business and came away convinced that the whole process was corrupted. It may be better now.

If there is one economic sector that demands a global regulatory protocol, it is the licensing of waste disposal. We already hear about Cap and Trade for CO2. This needs to be extended to every other known pollutant.

This does not mean that just because every metal producer has to pay money to dispose of SOx and NOx that they will all get together to do anything about it. What it does do is define the expense for an entrepreneurial solution while regulatory oversight becomes almost unnecessary except to audit and collect the charge.

Why it has not happened is that waste has been thrown into a global commons. As soon as you have a real problem you shop for a compliant jurisdiction. This facility has had the unwanted effect of shipping dangerous polluters into strange places.

Yet it is obvious that a global disposal charge would immediately focus everyone’s attention on amelioration strategies.

And it might be easier to get a consensus on this before we can get it of CO2. With most pollutants, most countries have little to lose and once everyone understands that the new regime is universal, it is easier to sell politically.
I would like to see the UN reconstitute itself to properly deal with this particular agenda. There exists a global consensus and it simply needs to be mobilized. The economic tools need to be created and managed openly to avoid fraud. And it fraud occurs it is still small enough to not be overly damaging.

It would gain the institution credit that is impossible to get in military adventures.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Oil Reality Check by Nelder

Chris Nelder once again serves up a reality check on the global oil supply situation. It continues to be awful. That is because we have not added a major new resource for decades and the last and best is passing through peak onto the way to decline.

The only offset is the Alberta Tarsand arriving with pending THAI production and it is certainly never going to be cheap oil. At least that supply can realistically displace a third of global demand in a declining environment.

As I have already posted, I expect the global oil industry to downsize from the current 85,000,000 barrels per day to 50,000,000 barrels per day over the next few decades with a third coming from Alberta, a third from the Middle East and a third from everyone else. It will simply become too valuable to simply burn as fuel in all but the most critical applications. At that rate of consumption, costly oil will be readily available for many millennia.

This blog has investigated many alternative options that can successfully displace this missing oil, so there is no need to rehash them here.

It is worth explaining why the oil industry is shrinking. We currently produce around 85.000.000 barrels per day. All the sources are in decline or about to enter decline. Been incredibly generous, let us pretend that we will only need 2,000,000 barrels per day of new production turned on each year. That way we can replace our current production in forty years. Makes sense?

That means that we need to find a resource able to support this level of production for at least twenty years every year. That translates into a resource of 20X365X2.0Mil. = 14.6 billion barrels of oil in the ground. We have to find one each and every year just to stand still. We have not found such resources for decades. Yet we need to find one in 2009 and every year thereafter.

The bottom line is absolutely clear today. Conventional oil is not able to come up to speed and this was clear to the industry for decades because they have been looking wherever they have been allowed to look. A seven billion barrel field in deep water off the coast of Brazil is a very poor reward.

In light of this developing scenario, one thing becomes clear. Economic expansion based on oil energy is now impossible and must henceforth rely on alternative energy and that really means solar.

In the short term, the global financial system will swing back into operation after the current time out has ended and most everyone has figured out that they are still alive. The first price to respond will be that of oil because of its still central role in the global economy. And another year of peak oil has gone by. It is now like waiting for a heart patient to have a heart attack. As time progresses, it takes a smaller and smaller clog to hurt us.


Oil Prices are Wrong--Very Wrong

By Chris Nelder Wednesday, December 24th, 2008

Everybody seems to have the same question for me lately: What's the deal with gasoline prices?

How could it go from $2 a gallon to over $4 and then back to $1.66 in a single year? Was it speculators?
The evil machinations of OPEC? Badly-timed fills and draws of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR)?
A financial calamity engineered by the masterminds of a shadowy wealth conspiracy?

It's never an easy question to answer, but I can easily say "none of the above."

The price of oil and gasoline is set daily and globally by a complex interaction of many factors, including the relative valuations of currency, speculation in oil futures, the fact that oil is "priced at the margins," delayed supply and demand feedback to the market, economic growth rates, money flows of hedge funds and big institutional investors, geological factors, geopolitics, and many more.

Oil shot to $147 this year because of a particular highly-leveraged alchemy of those factors, and it fell as the leverage unwound. It's down now because the world is heading into a major recession and traders are, as usual, overdoing their bearish reaction.

OPEC's responses this year have been mostly late to the game, so they were regularly ignored by the market. Last week's production cuts by the cartel, and the subsequent sell-off in oil, was a fine example of this.

Filling the SPR is too negligible to move the markets either. In May, the debate over filling the SPR raged on with hardly anyone seeming to realize that its 68,000 barrels per day of demand is a mere blip against the US consumption of 21 million barrels per day. Traders ignored it.

Much more to the point is an analysis of over 100 studies on gasoline price elasticity by the trade magazine Energy Journal, which found when gas prices increase 10%, they cut demand by 2.6%. When prices fall, consumption picks back up.

Anatomy of a Frenzy

Oil and other commodities shot up in the first part of the year as investors sought a safe haven against the financial calamity stemming from the subprime meltdown and levered up their bets with wild abandon.

That trend reversed course in June as the world's central banks began cutting interest rates and the US flooded the markets with dollars. The global deleveraging that ensued caused a rout in the commodity markets, and absolutely everything was sold indiscriminately as money managers scrambled to meet redemption calls and raise cash.

The progressively worsening news about the health of the global economy has only fed the selling frenzy, pushing down oil prices further still. It's now more profitable to store oil than to sell it immediately, and OPEC has made yet another belated and ineffectual move to curb a supply glut.

The Asian tigers that were widely expected to support demand, even as OECD demand fell, have reported extremely bearish numbers in the last week as their economic growth stalls.

Oil consumption is off 3.2% from a year ago in China, the world's second-largest consumer of oil, and its crude imports are now at their lowest levels this year.

Japan's oil exports fell to record lows in the sharpest monthly decline since such records have been kept;
meanwhile, imports to the world's third-largest oil consumer are down 17% year over year. South Korea's oil imports are also down 6.5% year over year.

Oil consumption by the world's top oil consumer, the US, has led the global decline with an expected 1.2 million barrels per day decline from past levels through 2009, according to the latest EIA report.

And voila: after thirteen straight weeks of price declines, gasoline is back to $1.66 a gallon.

Some have even suggested that oil in the $40s, and the current glut of oil supply, is proof that fears about peak oil supply were wrong.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

A False Sense of Complacency

A sub-$40 fill-up only lulls us into a false sense of complacency. As I have written repeatedly in recent weeks, we are setting ourselves up for a serious supply problem in the future with oil prices now below their replacement costs.

The facts are sobering:

· Current petroleum stocks in the US are still within the average range for this time of year, according to EIA. They're now about 8% higher than this time last year, but that's really nothing to write home about, and it's not much of a "glut."

· In a recent interview with Jim Puplava, energy analyst Robert Hirsch commented that a 1 million barrels per day decline in world demand would only move back the global peak of oil production by one month. By that metric, the allegedly huge cutback in oil consumption has bought the world about one month more before we peak—whoop-de-do.

· Oil production in Canada, the US's top source of crude imports, is faltering as prices are now too low to justify new projects that tap its large-but-costly and difficult reserves in tar sands and heavy oil.

· Our number-three source of imports, Mexico, is in serious trouble. Crude output from our southern neighbor has fallen 7% over last year, and exports are falling much faster, at a 20% decline, according to Pemex. (As I wrote back in June, exports fall faster than overall production. See "
The Impending Oil Export Crisis.") Production from its largest field, Cantarell, one of the four "supergiant" oil fields in the world, is crashing at the rate of 33% per year. At the current rate, Mexico's oil exports will cease altogether in just seven years.

· Experts at the ASPO and elsewhere believe that, within the next two years, world oil production will go into permanent decline, with depletion removing 2.5 million barrels per day from the world market— that's roughly equivalent to the total oil imports of Germany. There are no oil projects that can overcome a decline rate like that. And yet, no major economy is even preparing for this inevitability.

· Saudi oil minister Ali al-Naimi has warned that the world needs $75 oil to ensure future supply, and that current prices "are wreaking havoc on the industry and threatening current and planned investments."

· With gasoline now well below $2 a gallon, hybrids and other higher-efficiency cars are staying on the dealer lots. According to an analyst at Edmunds.com, a new hybrid would pay for itself in gasoline savings in two or three years with gasoline at $4 a gallon; but, below $2 a gallon, it's more like seven to eight years. Less than a year ago, you had to get on a waiting list and pay a premium over sticker to buy a new Prius. Now dealers have lots full of them, and Toyota has experienced such a sharp decline in sales that it posted its first operating loss in 70 years. Hopes that we will quickly replace a large percentage of our rolling stock with higher efficiency vehicles are now on hold, along with the hopes for a massive campaign of drilling shale formations and deepwater reservoirs.

· A steep contango condition in oil futures is still in place, reflecting the market's near-term oversupply and long-term uncertainty.

Given the evidence, the price of oil is wrong. Very wrong. Crude for under $65 a barrel is a bargain, and crude in the low $40s is a steal. I would not be at all surprised to see a sudden and violent move back up for oil prices within the next year, once the current extreme market conditions revert to the mean.

I am still long oil (United States Oil Fund LP ETF, NYSE:
USO) and will add to my position if it goes lower. My expectation is to hold it for a year, in case it further overshoots to the downside before recovering.
I'm also on the hunt for top-notch oil companies with low production costs, sizable reserves, and balance sheets healthy enough to let them acquire smaller competitors at basement prices.
I know it's been a tough year for most investors; but, we're nearly done with this turkey, and I'm setting my sights on profits for 2009. The buying opportunity of a lifetime is upon us. All we have to do now is wait for the right moment to pull the trigger.

Crop Circle Fabrication and Update

This recent article is way too long to post directly, so I invite you to tackle it at your leisure. The www.cropcircleconnector.com has been the chronicler of the crop circle phenomena from early days. The most important development that has evolved over the past twenty years is the evolving complexity, size and apparent intellectual content of the images.

I was frustrated for years by this phenomenon. It went from images that might have a natural origin to images that clearly could not. Yet through all this little in the way of empirical methodology seemed to be applied to their study. By this I mean getting down on your knees and inspecting the ground grid square by grid square. No human made event could withstand such scrutiny.

Then about three years ago, a researcher did the obvious and reported that the clearly authentic images are formed with six inch pixels. That made it completely clear, at least to me. We already knew that microwave energy was involved to collapse the plant stems. Now we are describing action caused by a beam of microwave energy hitting the ground.

This means that a microwave laser is producing this effect at a distance while been controlled by a computer driven aiming device. That is the obvious mechanism. The crop circle history also conforms to the steady improvement in human computer graphic capabilities. I immediately dismissed the whole story as a typical top secret military research program aimed at mastering the art of microwave laser weaponry. Recall that microwave technology has been militarized from the beginning and that the only technology releases have been ovens and communications.

In short, I had a perfectly good human agency quite up to the task of annoying us with these damn pictures, while producing a wonderful smokescreen.

The alternative explanation of ET simply was not necessary. Except that recently the complexity, from a mathematical viewpoint, is becoming compelling. Although, I am still unconvinced. However, I am also very aware that all previous thresholds of credibility have been crossed.

This article is a good beginning in the understanding of the mathematics. Much is made of new geometric theorems, but that is not very convincing. Euclidean based geometric problems are potentially vast in number and for that reason not overly pursued and published. Maybe this will help restore the hobby to its importance in mathematics.

But you can see the effort this is beginning to entice. I do not see yet where we are going with it, and it would be very annoying to discover another mathematical hobbyist at work over at the defence department. Maybe one of you can do better.

In the meantime, this ninety page article covers the history and various interpretations the images have generated to this year. That every image seems to be linkable to past symbology that is in the record (or maybe not) is a clue as to the interests of the generating artists (or the interpreting artists) and is itself a clue that we are kidding ourselves. More importantly, the technology has made great strides.

http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/anasazi/WHAT%20DO%20MODERN%20CROP%20PICTURES%20MEAN.html

WHAT DO MODERN CROP PICTURES MEAN?
Table of Contents
I. A scientific overview for the end of 2008
II. Mayan calendars and Mayan binary codes
III. More clues of various kinds
IV. Jaime Maussan and the Quetzalcoatl hypothesis
V. Some crop pictures have predicted the future
VI. Quetzalcoatl, Jesus and the year 2012

Solomon's Bronze

This is a bit long, but it is an excellent reconstruction of bronze casting technology at the very end of the Bronze Age well before any of the methodology was likely to be abandoned and perhaps even forgotten.

I am reminded that the science of archeology has never been happy with speculative reconstruction of past technologies. Partly this is because of the limitations of the evidence where simple lack of evidence is assuredly not evidence of a lack of appropriate technology.

The mere existence of a single chard of pottery is often a pretty good clue as to a major charcoaling operation. The mere fact that it was economically viable to mine ores in Ireland at the height of the Bronze Age grading a mere eight pounds to the ton, immediately infers an extensive copper trade whose value was huge.

That helps put this knowledge in its proper perspective. All this bronze was real wealth in the time of Solomon.

We have to thank the enthusiasms of members of the Masons for this very complete analysis.


SOLOMON'S TEMPLE - The Bronze Castings of Jachin and Boaz Pillars.

by W.Bro. Harvey Lovewell

Secretary WHJ Mayers Lodge of Research
Lodge Millaa Millaa #351
United Grand Lodge of Queensland, AU.

Introduction

I received a letter from a brother who is getting on in years and looks forward to receiving the newsletter of the W.H.J. Mayers Lodge of research, The Lectern. In his letter he asked for information on how the two pillars of Solomon's Temple, Boaz and Jachin, could have been constructed.

His request prompted the reply to him that I did not know, and looking through our books, I was unable to find or give him an answer. This, then, started my research into this subject, and the research has taken me all over and has touched onto subjects that were to appear to have no bearing on the subject of the research. Many new questions have arisen from the initial question, the answers to which are a matter of conjecture; some I have been able to answer and others for the purpose of this paper will remain unanswered.

There are many translations and interpretations of the books of the bible many of which do not agree with each other. For the purpose of this paper I have chosen to use The Jerusalem Bible. As my copy, has a complete set of annotations for explanation where needed, so all references to the Bible are from that translation. Where I have found conflict I have described the alternatives and leave you to make up your own mind on the matter.

I therefore, present to you my ideas on how our forefathers may have built large bronze objects like the Pillars and the sea.

The Pillars.

The pillars Jachin and Boaz, which were placed at the entrance to King Solomon's Temple, are mentioned in many writings. In the Bible, 1 Kings, 7.21; and in 2 Chronicles, 3.17; and many references in Masonic Writings. The Pillars Jachin and Boaz are also mentioned in An Apocalyptic Cyclopaedia of Advanced Magical Arts and Alternate Meanings 2nd Edition 1996, where they are given the meanings, strength and beauty among others. In the annotations to the Jerusalem Bible, referring to the pillars, it states the two names are obscure: possibly, “it is firm " and "it is strong ".

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST05.jpg







Albright in his book; Archaeology and the Religion of Israel
[i] page 139, in discussing the work of R.B.Y. Scott, states “that the names of the two columns Jachin and Boaz. Which stood before the Temple of Solomon, represent the first words of dynastic oracles, which were inscribed upon them. The Jachin formula may have been "Yahweh will establish (Yakin) thy throne forever” (or the like) and the Boaz formula may have run "in the strength of Yahweh shall the king rejoice or something similar

Further on page 144 he says when discussing pillars, “some of these pairs of columns were used to support the roof of the portico, in megaron fashion, others were free standing. Without constructional relation to the building. There can he no reasonable doubt that the pillars Jachin and Boaz were of the latter type.”-

Colin Breckon in his paper, The Building of Solomon’s Temple [ii] says, on page 8, when referring to Alex Horne; Boaz could be a corruption of a now obsolete word Bose or Boss which at one time meant hollow.

Other writers have referred to them as "cosmic Pillars" "like the pillars of Hercules" and as representing the twin mountains between which the sun was believed to emerge each morning. They have also been described as cult objects for burning incense.


History

Much of what we know of our ancestors from the time before Christ can be attributed to the study of ancient man as he lived in what could be called the cradle of civilization. That is the middle east, that area described by Dr Werner Keller in his book ”The Bible as History”
[iii] as the Fertile Crescent, reaching from the Persian Gulf to the Red Sea encompassing the area of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers through to the Mediterranean Sea.

Probably the most researched documents of this area, is the collection of books that we know as the Bible, especially the Old Testament which tells stories of people who lived then, and the places they lived in as well as aspects of their culture. The Historical Books remain the primary witness to the culture of Israel and Judah. Recent scholars however refer to these as theological mythology. The text, almost a polemic (dispute one side wanting to force its view on the other) of the southern tribes against the religiosity of the northern tribes and other neighbouring peoples, was composed about 800 to 600 BCE and is written in part to chronicle the Deity’s actions in history. This view of the stories of events as perceived and researched by the writers, this can be seen in the differing versions of the one event. There is controversy in using these texts for historical reconstruction, nevertheless using these writings and the findings of archaeology; one can obtain some idea of the culture and technology of the times.



The part of the Bible that set in motion the research for this paper is 1 Kings 7,13:26 together with 2 Chronicles, 3-4. This tells the story of a bronze worker, Huram-Abi, (Hiram Abif) who came from Tyre, an island on the coast of what is now Lebanon, but in those days was Phoenicia. He was employed on the construction of King Solomon's Temple. Huram-Abi is described, in 2 Chronicles 2,14, as the son of a Danite woman by a Tyrian father. He is skilled in the use of gold, silver, bronze, iron, stone, wood, scarlet, violet, fine linen, crimson, in engraving of all kinds, and in the execution of any designs suggested to him, In Kings he is described as “a widow’s son from the tribe of Naph-ta-li” Where he is from will not affect this work. He really sounds like a versatile and clever worker. The purpose here, however is to concentrate on his bronze work.

To quote from, I Kings 7, 15 He cast two bronze pillars, the height of one pillar was eighteen cubits and a cord of twelve long gave the measurement of girth. As was also second pillar.

In Chronicles the pillars are described as being “30 and 5 cubits high!”

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST07.jpg


To get an idea of what the exact length a cubit was, in itself, not an easy task, as there are cubits and cubits. World Book Encyclopaedia,
[iv] says in reference to a cubit It was based on the length of a man 's arm from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow. No one knows when this measurement was established. The Egyptian cubit was 21 inches, the Roman cubit was 17.5 inches, and the Hebrew cubit was 17.58 inches. In the English system the cubit is 18 inches. My measurement is 19.75 inches or 50cm. says in reference to a cubit It was based on the length of a man 's arm from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow. No one knows when this measurement was established. The Egyptian cubit was 21 inches, the Roman cubit was 17.5 inches, and the Hebrew cubit was 17.58 inches. In the English system the cubit is 18 inches. My measurement is 19.75 inches or 50cm.

The People's New Testament 1891
[v] says A cubit, somewhat more than one foot nine inches English. That is 21 inches or 53 cms . From Biblical weights and measures as described by The First Church of the Nazarene [vi] a cubit is 50 centimetres.

In the Jerusalem Bible the cubit is given as 18 inches or 45 centimetres. As already stated I will use the Jerusalem Bible, as my reference, as to what the truth is, academic argument will not change the concept I am trying to develop.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST08.jpg
http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST09.jpg

I will therefore use this measurement, which is a cubit of 45 cms. The metric measurements of the pillars, from 1 Kings 7, 15 are, eight point one meters in height and a circumference of five point four meters. Traditionally we are told that the pillars were hollow, I have been unable to find out if this is true or not. For the pillars to be solid the mass would be enormous. In my research it has also been suggested by some scholars that the pillars could have been built of timber and then gilded.

Colin Breckon in his paper, The Building of Solomon’s Temple
[vii] says, on page 8, when referring to Alex Horne; Boaz could be a corruption of a now obsolete word Bose or Boss which at one time meant hollow.

This hypothesis would make a lot of sense and solve many problems. In spite of all this I will assume that the pillars were cast bronze and hollow. Also in my research some scholars have suggested that the pillars could have been cast in sections each fitting into the other, similar to the construction of a stone pillar. This theory has a lot going for it, as the problems of handling large quantities of molten metal would be reduced to more manageable proportions, as would the transport of the castings.

Bronze cauldrons dated to 100 B.C.E. with a capacity of 600 litres have been found. These were made in segments and joined together with rivets.

In addition he made a capital to top the pillar. This was five cubits, or 2.25 meters high, and this was decorated around the outside with filigree and pomegranates. I will not consider these capitals as part of this paper although the treatment of them would be similar to the other castings.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST10.jpg


He also made other large castings. I Kings 7, 23 He made the Sea of cast metal, ten cubits, from rim to rim, circular in shape and five cubits high; a cord of thirty cubits long gave the measurement of its girth. That is a bowl 4.5 meters in diameter and 2.25 meters deep.

Twelve cast bronze oxen, three for each side of a square, supported this bowl. My research has revealed that there is no agreement on the shape of The Sea. A Zuidhof
[viii] In his computer program The Molten Sea, states that the Sea is Cup shaped. The program tries to answer the claim that the Bible says that pi is equal to 3.

In Asimov's Guide to the Bible, Isaac Asimov remarked:

“The exact function of the ‘molten sea’ is not stated, though it seems most likely that it was a container for water used in the various rituals.

“The interesting point is that its upper rim seems to be circular in shape with a diameter of ten cubits and a circumference of thirty cubits. This is impossible, for the ratio of the circumference to the diameter (a ratio called ‘pi’ by mathematicians) is given here as 30/10 or 3, whereas the real value of pi is an unending decimal which begins 3.14159 . . . If the molten sea were really ten cubits in diameter it would have to be just under thirty-one and a half cubits in circumference.

“The explanation is, of course, that the Biblical writers were not mathematicians or even interested in mathematics and were merely giving approximate figures. Still, to those who are obsessed with the notion that every word in the Bible is infallible (and who know a little mathematics) it is bound to come as a shock to be told that the Bible says that the value of pi is 3.”

Consider the following possibilities, which I offer for your consideration.

The shape of the following illustrations equates to the description in the scripture.
The first is oval shaped.

The layout consists of two semicircles with diameters of 8.76 cubits, separated by a rectangle 1.24 cubits wide.

At its widest point, A to B, this Sea measures 8.76 + 1.24 = 10.00 cubits from brim to brim. Its circumference is (8.76 x pi) + 1.24 + 1.24 = 30.00 cubits.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST12.jpg


Is this oval the best solution to the problem? Probably not. Maybe we can consider a circular Sea but to look at it in three dimensions. We know that it had a rim, so it was somewhat narrower just under the rim.
Therefore, it could easily have measured 10.00 cubits from brim to brim, yet have been only 9.55 cubits wide at the waist, where “it took a line thirty cubits long to go round it” because 9.55 x pi = 30.00.
http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST13.jpg


Josephus
[ix] Was originally known as Joseph Ben-Matthias, the commander of the Jewish insurgents at Joppa in the time of Emperor Nero. He changed sides and went over to the Romans changing his name to Josephus. Writing in his work, The Antiquities of the Jews says “Solomon also cast a brazen sea, the figure of which was a hemisphere”. I have assumed therefore that the sea, was a hemisphere or one half of a sphere and my calculations reflect this. The argument as to the exact shape of the sea will not change the hypothesis I am trying to develop. Singer et al [x] page 633 when commenting on the casting of the bronze articles mentioned in Kings and Chronicles says; it has been estimated that the Brazen Sea alone weighed 200 tons. I will dispute this statement later on. One can see however, that we are dealing with large castings and heavy quantities of metal.

These must be handled and melted and handled again. In 2 Chronicles 4, 17:18. The king made them by the process of sand casting in the Jordan area between Succoth and Zeredan Solomon made all these articles in great quantities, no reckoning being made of the weight of the bronze.

The Castings. Their Size.

Let us now look at these castings and see what we can make of them.

How much bronze is in the pillar?
How much did it weigh?

We are told that the height is 8.1M and the circumference is 5.4M. The thickness of the pillar we are told is a hands breadth. My hands breadth is 97mm. However the Jerusalem Bible says that a hands breadth or palm is 72mm so I will use this value in my calculations. All calculations rounded to the nearest whole number.

The pillar’s circumference is, c=5.4M
Therefore the outside diameter will be o/s d = c / pi
= 5.4/3.1416
We will call the outside diameter, D1 = 1.72M
And the inside diameter D2
Therefore the outside radius R1 = 1.72/2 =.86M

The inside diameter will be equal to the outside diameter minus the wall thickness of 72mm multiplied by two. (.144m) The outside radius Rl and inside radius R2 will be one half of the appropriate diameters. I will use the measurement of the radius to calculate the volume.

D2 = D1- .72x2 = 1.72-(.072x2) = 1.576m
Inside radius r2= 1.576/2 = .788m

Volume of pillar VP = v I of outside dimensions less v2 of core

vI = pi r2 h, therefore v1 = 3.1416 x .86 x .86 x 8.1 = 19M 3 volume of outer cylinder
v2 = pi r2 h, therefore v2 = 3.1416x.788x.788x8.1 = 16M3 volume of inner cylinder

VP = v1-v2 = 19 – 16 = 3M3 this is the volume of bronze in the pillar.

The weight of Bronze can vary dependent on the percentage of copper and other metals used in the alloying process. The variant will be a percentage plus or minus around 9 tons per cubic meter. We will therefore assume a weight of 9 tons per m3. It follows then that the weight of one pillar without the capital will be.

3 x 9 = 27 tons. (approx.)

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST16.jpg


If the pillar had been cast in sections, say 10 sections, each 81 cm long, then each would have weighed 2.7 tonnes, this is far more believable than one casting. The technology for melting and handling large amounts of molten metal and successfully casting same was just not available at this time in history. Even at 2.7 tonnes credibility is stretched.

My investigations and discussions with a Professor of Archeometallurgy brought the response of total disbelief that "the people of the Bronze age were able to cast bronze weighing tons".

Tylecote
[xi] in his work The Coming of the Age of Iron discussing the size of castings, says in reference to the Chou dynasty (770 BCE) A bronze caldron found at Anyang in 1946: it weighted 1400kg and was about/ 1M across. Of course these may have been t/he product of good organization rather than large capacity smelting and melting.

Earlier I made mention of the Sea sometimes referred to as the Molten Sea or Brazen Sea. The size of which was 4.5m in diameter and 2.25m deep and a hands breadth in thickness. These measurements suggest that it is one half of a sphere.

We can therefore calculate both the volume of bronze and the capacity of the bowl. 1 Kings 7, 26. Tells us that it held two thousand baths. Chronicles tells us however, that the sea held 3000 baths. These inconsistencies I leave for each of you to consider. The measurements for liquids used in the Bible are the words seah, cor and bath. A cor is equal to 450 litres and a bath is one tenth of a Cor or 45 litres. However we have variations from this measurement as well.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST17.jpg


The Peoples New Testament States The Bath, the tenth of the chomer, ( cor) or seven gallons and four pints and a half Using US gallons that's.28 litres, using imperial gallons that's 34 litres. One can assume that US gallons were used in this version.

According to the First Church of The Nazarene one Bath is equal to 22 litres.

All these translators seem to believe that their version is the correct one!!

The capacity of the Sea would then be equal to 2000x45 or 90000 litres, on the assumption that a bath, was in fact 45 litres.

On looking at this, it does not seem quite right as my swimming pool holds 67000 litres and is much bigger, we will see what the calculations tell us later .

On the other hand, if a bath is equal to 22litres then the capacity would be 2000x22 or 44000 litres, this is quite a deal different.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST18.jpg


By calculation, the volume of a sphere is:
v = 4 x π x r3 ( π or pi =3.1416 & r = half d)
3

To calculate the volume of bronze that makes up the Sea therefore, we must find the volume of two spheres then subtract the inner from the outer, then divide by two as we want the volume of the bowl which we will assume is one half of a sphere, that is, the Sea. Whilst this may appear simplistic, as there could be variations in size due to ornamentation etc. for the purpose of this exercise the variations would be small and would not affect the ideas presented.

The volume of the outside sphere is vI, and the inside sphere is v2. However we need to find the volume of our basin, which is one half a sphere. To do this we divide the volume of the sphere by 2 :

vI= 4 x 3.1416 x 2.25 x 2.25 x 2.25 = 48 m3 = 24m3
3 2

Again we are told that the Sea is a hands breadth in thickness so we must reduce the diameter .by two times 72mm that is 144mm. But our calculation uses the radius so we will reduce it by 72mm.

v2 = 4 x 3.1416 x 2.178 x 2.178 x 2.178 = 44m3 = 22m3 this is the capacity of the bowl
3 2

The volume of the metal in the Sea therefore is:

vI -v2 or 24 -22 = 2m3

As we have seen, the weight of bronze is 9 tons per m3, therefore its weight would be:-

2 x 9 = 18 tons

With reference, to the statement of Singer earlier. I cannot make the sea 200 tons given the availability of current data. His statement, I believe, is just a bad guess unless he took into account the mass of the water in it as well. Even so the capacity of the sea would also affect the total mass, given that one litre of water weighs 1kg.

The capacity of the Sea is calculated as follows. One cubic meter is equal to 1000 litres of water. The Sea's capacity would be, therefore 22m3 times 1000 or 22000 litres. Compare this with 90000 litres or indeed 44000 litres. One of the big problems associated with references in the Bible translations is the fact that the numbers do not add up. We must also remember that the writers were writing on their own perceptions and their limited knowledge.

We have read in Kings that the Sea held 2000 baths. If the calculations are correct, then a bath would be equal to 11litres. One can see the difficulties in determining the truth, when using ancient writings. As I do not know the truth and my research has shown that scholars in this area do not agree or are guessing. I leave these discrepancies for you to ponder

This big basin, used by the priests for ritual washing before sacrifices, symbolized the
Source of life, stood on the backs of twelve bronze oxen. The rim must have been four metres off the ground!

Bronze Making

Now we must try to answer the following questions. Where did these people get the ore? How did they smelt it? How did these people melt all this metal? Where did they do it? How did they make the moulds? How did they get the molten metal to the moulds? How did they get the finished product to the site? How did they erect the pillars and the sea?

To find answers to these questions we must look at what Archaeology tells us about early metal workings. Humans have used metals for only the last 12000 years, a much shorter time than the period which stone was used for tools, weapons and ornaments. The McGraw Hill " Encyclopaedia of Science and Technology
[xii] tells us, The earliest datable finds of human-altered metal are small copper objects from sites in the Near East, including a pendant from Shanidar in Iraq dated around 9500 BC. Copper was used at this time in the Middle East and prehistoric Europe for jewellery and in ritual religious ceremony.

The first coins were made and used in Asia Minor in the early part of 7000 BCE. Smelting was discovered in the middle of 5000 BCE. At this time, trade in metals was taking place so metals not found naturally in one place were traded with those peoples who had them. Copper was available from the mines in the Arabah. Tin was traded with the British who mined it at Cornwall. Other metals as well as tin were alloyed, arsenic, antimony and lead each used for particular purposes. Knowledge of smelting led to the mixing of metals and the discovery that this alloying made a better metal than either of those mixed. Primitive bronze has been excavated and dated as far back as 3000 BCE.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST20.jpg















As copper melts at a temperature of 1083°C, high heat was needed and a means of forcing air, to make the fire hotter, had to be invented. The furnace was developed. A good example of these early furnaces was discovered at Timna, these were dated at between 1200 and 1400BC. Ingots of copper have been found. Of the ingots that have been found, some have solidified in the furnace and others have been made by being poured into ox hide molds. These ingots weighed between 30 and 40 kg with a thickness of 4cm,

The production of bronze by mixing copper and tin was an established practice throughout the Eurasian landmass by 1500 BCE. In those times bronze was used mainly for weapons and cutting tools, swords, axes, spears, arrow heads, adzes and shields, although bowls and cauldrons were also made from bronze .

To make bronze castings the following things are essential, ores, fuel, blast air and tools, furnaces and crucibles and have of course, a mold. Forbes in Metallurgy in Antiquity
[xiii] says. The ores were mostly plentiful and of good quality in the ancien1 Near East and further but the fuel was often rather a problem. For the quantity and above all the quality of the fuel determine to a large extent the temperature attained in the furnace and this again is largely responsible for the possibility of working certain ores and of using certain processes. In other words the fuel determines to a certain degree the melting and smelting activities of the early smith.

The Problem of Fuel.

What then of this fuel problem? To overcome this problem smelting was done close to a supply of appropriate fuel. We are all aware of the desert nature of the areas we are discussing. Was this always so? R.J. Forbes,
[xiv] says. It has been proven that the Romans used 21.8 kg wood to roast one kg of ore, and an additional 68.5 kg wood for smelting and refining (one third of the fuel was wood and the remainder charcoal). One kg charcoal has a calorific value equal to that of 90.2 kg wood. That’s burning an awful lot of wood.

One can assume that Hiram needed similar quantities. Studies done in similar climates have shown that one acre of land grew 125 trees and 900 kg of fuel were produced from each 40-year-old tree. A tree bearing area of .8 acre was required for each one ton of copper. In modern times we know that this area is rich in oil. Could these people have found on the surface quantities of pitch?

Writing in the Palestine Quarterly Menashe Har-Er
[xv] states, Smelting and casting of the metal was usually done near the mines, and mainly in the vicinity of the sources of forest wood and apparently utilized the stands of Haloxylon persicum which were common in the region and reached heights of 3-5 meters these plants have almost completely disappeared today.

Stands of Quercus calliprinos a slow growing oak and Juniperus Photicia, a softwood
Juniper tree from altitudes of 1000 to 1600 meters reached heights of 10 meters and more, they grew in the western Edom Mountains and were cut and converted to charcoal and transported to the smelting sites by camel and donkey caravans.

Early smelting was carried out with a variety of primitive furnaces. This usually burnt charcoal, but other fuels were also burnt; including dung, date seeds brush etc.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST21.jpg
http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST22.jpg


























The Furnace.

For the melting of scraps of metal in crucibles, usually a fired clay bowl, a ring of stones a pile of hot charcoal and a clay tuyere {pronounced “twee-yer” a ceramic tube) connected to a bellows are all that would be required.

Have you ever blown air on to a fire to get it going? This phenomenon no doubt gave man the idea to build bellows, to give more air at a greater pressure, the size of the bellows increasing to meet the need for greater pressure and heat to work larger quantities of metal. These are still in use in some parts of the world.


The melting of large quantities of metal is however another matter. This was probably done by using multiple furnaces, adjacent to the mold in the ground, with channels leading from each furnace into the mold between the furnaces. This would enable the quantity of molten metal needed for the pour to be cast before the metal solidified.

Werner Keller [xvi] describes an excavation that was made by Nelson Glueck in the 1940s at an area known as Wadi-el-Arabah. The excavation site at Ezion-geber, also known as Elath and today called Elat: In the middle of a square walled enclosure an extensive building came into view. The green discoloration on the walls left no doubt as to the purpose of the building, it was a blast furnace. The mud brick walls had two rows of openings. They were flues: a skilful system of air passages was included in the construction. The whole thing was a proper, up to date blast furnace, built in accordance with a principle that celebrated it resurrection in modern industry a century ago, as the Bessemer System. Flues and chimneys both lay along a north to south axis, for the incessant winds and storms from the Wadi-el- Arabah had to take the role of bellows.

A further description of this area comes from Nelson Glueck
[xvii] he is writing about the excavation at Ezion-geber which was found buried at Tell el-Kheleifeh. What puzzled us greatly when we first commenced operation at Tell el-Kheleifeh was what seemed to us to be the particularly unfortunate location of the site. Situated in the center of the Arabah rift, which is banked on either side by high hills leading, respectively, into Arabia and the Sinai, it is open to the full fury of the almost constant winds that blow fiercely down the Wadi Arabah, as if forced through a wind tunnel and further on The very first building brought to light at the northwest corner of the mound turned out to be the largest and most elaborate smelter ever discovered in antiquity. Each of the walls of its rooms was pierced by two rows of carefully constructed apertures, which could only be flues. The upper rows opened into a system of transverse air channels utilising the winds blowing constantly from the north and northeast to fan the flames in the furnace rooms. The lower rows were intended to permit the gases formed in one chamber to penetrate into the second and so on and preheat its contents. It was easy to reconstruct the smelting process. The ores were given a preliminary "roasting" at the individual mining sites in the Wadi Arabah, and then brought for further smelting and refining at Ezion-geber. Layers of ore »ere placed between layers of lime in large, thick walled, pottery crucibles. Piles of charcoal from the wooded hills of Edom were packed all around them in the open furnace rooms of the smelter, with the fires being ignited in successive order at proper intervals of time.

The Arabah is an extension of the great rift valley that goes from Africa through the Red Sea the Gulf of Aqabar and on to the Dead Sea and Glueck
[xviii] page 158 says in reference to the site of Ezion-geber and shelter under the lee of the hills from the fierce winds which blow down the center of the funnel like rift of the Wadi Arabah, The bronze workers used this wind to operate a natural blast for their furnaces, That was 3000 years ago, Today we use compressed air, In the same area were discovered smelting pots with a capacity of 14 cubic feet or 1.3m3, I believe the forgoing tells us how the bronze could have been produced and the metal melted prior to being placed into a mold.

Whilst this description gives some idea of where and how a furnace could operate this area is many kilometres from Jerusalem and may or may not have been the site for Solomon’s bronze work, scholars are still debating this. The site is also far away from where Succoth is believed to have been.

The Mold.

To make up the castings a mould is required to get the shape needed, be it the pillars, the sea, or any of the other articles previously mentioned, Man has used various molds in the past, an open mould made in stone and clay was common for such things as axe and arrowheads.

A two piece mould was used for more complex molds like sword handles. To make more elaborate shapes a method called the lost wax technique was used. This involved the forming of the desired shape in wax, then enclosing the wax model in fine clay, but leaving a small channel to the exterior, When the clay is heated the melted wax can be poured out; thus the clay becomes a hollow mould and molten metal can be poured into it, After it is cooled the, clay can be broken away and one is left with a metal copy of the original.

We however, must look at a mould of very much larger proportions. As previously mentioned, the Bible says that the castings were made by the process of sand casting.

Singer
[xix] page 628, says that, moulding in clay was the principal process for casting in antiquity, I have given a description of a furnace found in the Arabah and how use was made of the prevailing winds to assist in the smelting. Singer [xx] continues on page 633 where he goes on to give us a description of the area and method of building these castings. The soil is a marl, with patches of clay. It is clear that the molds were actually excavated in one of these patches; there is no mention in the Hebrew text that any special clay was used. Such vast mo1ds could hardly have been constructed in any other way. This is only one small step beyond the method already used in Egypt and common elsewhere, of supporting clay molds by burying them in the ground before the furnace.
This would allow the molten metal to be poured direct from the smelter to the mould, with channels from several furnaces to different parts of the mold, to ensure an even distribution of the melt, Singer goes on with a description of the construction of the mold for the Sea or great bowl



In front of the furnace pit was dug. To an arm pivoted at its centre a template was attached, the outer edge being curved to the profile of the basin, so that when the arm swung around the pivot the template described the desired shape, Ropes probably of straw, were laid on the floor and up the sides of the pit, and then covered with well beaten clay and broken pots. The ropes provided vents for the escape of gases evolved when the molten metal was poured into the mold. The space between the walls and, the floor of the pit and the edge of the template was gradually filled up with more clay and broken bricks or pots, the template being moved round as required. The outermost quarter inch or so of the filling was of more finely textured clay suitable for modelling the decorative borders of the bowl, "like the brim of a cup the flower of a Lily ". The clay surface was allowed to dry slowly, cracks being stopped with clay. The construction of the core for the inner surface of the basin was now col1sidered; this core would be suspended within the mould, and only a handbreadth above it. A framework of metal supports would be placed to keep it in position, After drying, the mould and channels leading to it from the furnaces would be well baked, and heated with charcoal so that the metal would not become chilled. When the glowing coals had been swept out, the sections of the inner mould were firmly fixed in register, lest it should float upon the molten metal. The mold was now ready for the metal.

http://www.freemasons-freemasonry.com/pillarST24.jpg

















The method of casting the pillars would have been similar, These could have been made vertical with the outside part done first with whatever decoration desired, The core could then

have been built up in the middle with the appropriate handbreadth left for the molten bronze, However, if the mold were the full 8.1 metres the pressure of the molten metal at the base together with its depth would make a successful cast unlikely, In addition it would be difficult to get the melt in fast enough for even solidifying. When solidified they could have been dug up, Even so it would still have been a major task to lift, Possibly it was done with a timber framework and levers, no doubt there was plenty of manpower. It appears to me that, if the hypothesis that the pillars were cast in sections is accepted, then the construction of the mould or moulds would have to be easier there would be less metal in the melt and handling would not be so hard.

Stone pillars were built this way for the same handling reasons.


We now must look at how these huge castings were taken to the Temple, From the map of Israel it can be seen that the distance from the smelters located at Succoth, which we have been told is situated at Tell Deir AlIa is a considerable distance.

In addition to this Werner Keller,
[xxi] on page 202 tells us that:- At Tell Deir AlIa in, Transjorden where the River Jabbok leaves the hills six miles before it joins the Jordan the expedition discovered traces of Succoth, the Israelite city dating to the days of Joshua this is adjacent to the Wadi-el-Arabah.

Goods in those days were transported on the backs of asses or camels. Horses and chariots were well known, but the horses were not the heavy draught horses of today. They were fairly light horses, and with the primitive harness in use at that time, pulling a fairly light chariot with one or two men in it was probably as much as they could do. Thus, we can forget about drays, heavy carts and the like. We must therefore, question just how big a load could have been moved!

Asses and camels had been used by the Israelites and others for transporting goods for hundreds of years. I believe it safe to assume that asses were used to transport the castings from the foundry to Jerusalem. I don't know the carrying capacity of an ass, but it probably does not exceed l00 kilograms. Further, this load would have to be in two equal parts -one each side of the ass. So we get back to castings of no more than 50 kilograms -about the maximum load of a single furnace.

Then there is the biblical statement act that the casting was done in the plain of the Jordan River, between Succoth and Zarethan. (see earlier map)These are in the Rift Valley, about 35 kilometres from Jerusalem, and about 25 kilometres from where the Jordan enters the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea is about 1290 feet (393 metres) below sea level. The foundry was probably some 1100 to 1150 feet (335 to 350 metres) below sea level. Jerusalem is about 2700 feet (822 metres) above sea level. So transporting the castings involved a climb of some 3800 feet (1158 metres) through rugged country, where the road consisted of a dirt track probably not much wider in many places than the space taken by a man leading a loaded ass. This, I believe, would absolutely preclude the use of any form of wheeled transport for goods being taken to or from the foundry. So again we get back to asses each carrying two castings of not more than about 50 kilograms each. Bronze, when cast, takes the form of the mould very accurately.


It would have relatively easy for the artisans of King Solomon' s time to make moulds sufficiently accurate for the resultant castings to fit together closely. The pillar or other object thus formed would appear to the casual observer to be one piece


We know that King Solomon had many horses and chariots, I Kings 10.26:29 Solomon built up a force of chariots and horses; he had one thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand horses; one could ask given the above could chariots have been use to transport the castings given the hypothesis that the castings were small then joined together. Were these objects constructed and raised gradually in place? Were they assembled then lifted?

There are many theories, as to how heavy objects were raised. The pillars had to be lifted onto their base and stood up, then fixed down. Levers could be used to raise them a small amount, then wedges and blocks inserted and the process repeated until the required height was achieved. The construction of heavy timber scaffolding at the side of the object to be raised allowing lifting by cables affixed to levers. Whatever the method used it would have been laborious. We can only wonder at the ingenuity of our forefathers.

Conclusion.

Trying to get at the exact truth of what happened all that time ago is difficult. A lot of
Assumptions must be made. I don't know how close this paper is, to what was done by the artisans of King Solomon but as a suggestion to what was done; it is probably as good as any. I have quoted from past scholars who have seen and worked the sites of antiquity, this I have not done. I would most certainly like to, as the research for this paper has filled my mind with countless questions to which, I would like to find the answers. I hope that this lecture has also given you the desire to find out more.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

[i]Archaeology and the Religion of Isreal, William Foxwell Albright. The John Hopkins Press 1968


[ii] The Building of King Solomon’s Temple Part Two. Colin Breckon.


[iii] The Bible as History, Werner Keller 1955


[iv] The World Book Encyclopaedia 1973 Book C p939


[v] The Peoples New Testament (Tables of time, measure, weight Etc) taken from the internet page www.mun.ca/rels/hrollman/restmov/texts/bjohnson/hg1/PNTOOL.HT


[vi] First Church of the Nazarene. Biblical weights and measures.


[vii] The Building of King Solomon’s Temple Part Two. Colin Breckon.


[viii] The Molten Sea. A software program by A Zuidhorf 1996


[ix] The Antiquities of the Jews Book VIII Chapter 111.5


[x] A History of technology Singer, Holmford & Hall


[xi] The Coming of the age of Iron, edited by Theodore A Wertime and James D Muhly. Tylecote “ Furnaces Crucibles and Slags, page 195


[xii] Encyclopaedia of Science and Technology CD ROM section on prehistoric technology pages 7-8


[xiii] Metallurgy in Antiquity R J Forbes; Leiden 1966 page 19


[xiv] Studies in Ancient Technology R J Forbes Leiden 1966 page 19


[xv] Palestine Exploration Quarterly Num 109 page 76


[xvi] The Bible as History Werner Keller page 202


[xvii] Rivers in the Desert Nelson Glueck Weidenfield and Nicholson 1959 page 163


[xviii] ibid


[xix] A History of technology Singer, Holmford & Hall


[xx] ibid


[xxi] The Bible as History

Gadget

This content is not yet available over encrypted connections.