Hack-It-Yerself, Military-Grade Awesome, News Of The Weird

Now THAT’S My Kind of Marxism

don't touch!

The Lucid Science Mk. 1 High-Voltage Rock Disaggregator in all its glory.

The Marx generator is a simple circuit designed by Erwin Marx

in 1924 to create very short bursts of very high voltage. It charges several capacitors in parallel, then once a spark gap reaches the necessary breakdown voltage, the capacitors discharge in series. This creates a huge electrical arc and lots of EM inductance, which is easily enough to fry a GFI, as one of my college friends found out the hard way. In the spirit of bigger-is-better, the mad scientists at Lucid Science created a truly terrifying 500 kV Marx generator (that’s 500 thousand volts) for the purpose of breaking apart geological core samples. Check out the full 18 page build gallery, which includes details on how to build a high-voltage DC power supply using a pole transformer and an electric stove, and how to safely discharge 125,000 joules of energy in a fraction of a second. YouTube Preview Image Rock Disaggregator Gallery [via reddit] [Ed: Special thanks to Discontinuuity for this contribution!]

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  • http://o2richenvironment.blogspot.com/ engineerd

    This is both terrifying and sweet as hell.

    It, therefore, is the perfect Halloween post!

  • http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/pages/Tombstone-AZ/Goodenough-Mine-TourTCMC/205373899689 CptSevere

    This has got to be the most impressive contraption I've heard of lately. Working for a company that owns mines and collects all manner of rock crushing gear, this fearsome and deadly device gives me goosebumps. I would sit around and feed it rocks all day long if I had one.

    • Charles_Barrett

      Images of Audry II are flooding into my mind at the thought of this, "Feed Me Seymour…!" as you pitch rocks into its maw…

  • trinity

    Thanks for the comments. It was pretty impressive but caused probs for nearby computers so we had to find another remote location to keep working on it. We blew up all kinds of stuff to test its power and design an appropriate vessel. Good times!

    • Deartháir

      Out of curiosity, how "nearby" are we talking? 10 yards? 100 yards? A mile?

      • trinity

        In a 4,000 sq. foot building, 10-15 yard radius most affected. If there was any interference farther than that outside the building, we didn't know about it.

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