Gravitation of Time

februari 10th, 2006

The Universal Law of Gravitation has several important features. First, it is an inverse square law, meaning that the strength of the force between two massive objects decreases in proportion to the square of the distance between them as they move farther apart. Second, the direction in which the force acts is always along the line (or vector) connecting the two gravitating objects.
In 1687 Sir Isaac Newton first published his Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy) which was a radical treatment of mechanics, establishing the concepts which were to dominate physics for the next two hundred years. Among the book’s most important new concepts was Newton’s Universal Law of Gravitation. Newton managed to take Kepler’s Laws governing the motion of the planets and Galileo’s ideas about kinematics and projectile motion and synthesize them into a law which governed both motion on earth and motion in the heavens. This was an achievement of enormous importance for physics; Newton’s discoveries meant that the universe was a rational place in which the same principles of nature applied to all objects.

Maarten Vanden Eynde

‘Between two objects, let’s say A and B, there is a point where the gravitation of both objects is working with equal force (L1 point, named after Lagrange). This point is balancing between the two attracting masses. If it is slightly bending towards A or B is will be attracted more by either one of them. It can only move from it’s frozen position, without loosing it’s equal balance, if A and B change mass simultaneously. The mass A is loosing, B has to gain.

Time is always moving. When you read this word, it became history already. The future is catching up instantly. The present is an untouchable point always on the move.
If time would be a linear experience, and A would be the past and B the future, than the point hanging in the middle would be the present. The past is getting longer and longer (or bigger and bigger) so in order for this point to be equally drawn to both A and B, it needs to be moving towards the future. The past is getting bigger and the future is getting smaller. And on top of that the speed of this process is accelerating. Just like the birth of matter during the big bang, time was created at the same time and moves equally with the expanding universe; faster and faster to it’s final destiny. Will this be the end or a new beginning?’


The Lagrangian points (also Lagrange point, L-point, or libration point), are the five positions in interplanetary space where a small object affected only by gravity can theoretically be stationary relative to two larger objects (such as a satellite with respect to the Earth and Moon). They are analogous to geosynchronous orbits in that they allow an object to be in a “fixed” position in space rather than an orbit in which its relative position changes continuously.

Lagrangian points

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Chaos Theory

februari 7th, 2006

According to classical Greek myth, only Chaos existed in the beginning.

Chaos theory refers to the behavior of certain systems of motion, such as the atmosphere, the solar system, plate tectonics, ocean currents, economies or population growth, to be especially sensitive to tiny changes in starting conditions that result in drastically different outcomes. The biggest weather computer in the world, in the European centre for Medium-range Weather Forecasting, does as many as 400 million calculations every second. It is fed 100 million separate weather measurements from around the world every day, and it processes data in three hours of continuous running, to produce a ten day forecast. Yet beyond two or three days the forecasts are speculative, and beyond six or seven they are worthless. Chaos theory, then, sets definite limits to the predictability of complex non-linear systems.
Unlike what it implies colloquially, chaos theory doesn’t mean the world is metaphorically chaotic, nor does it refer to entropy, by which systems naturally tend toward disorder. Chaos theory relies on the uncertainty inherent in measurements, the precision of predictions, and the non-linear behavior of seemingly linear systems.

Chaos theory came on the scientific scene in the late 1970s. It was introduced by a self-motivated group of Santa Cruz scientists. As students they had to fight their faculty to pursue their fascination with this unorthodox subject. After its initial presentation, chaos became a buzzword in many disciplines, as scientists thought of ways it applied in their fields. Even more interesting, scientists began crossing over fields, developing multidisciplinary approaches.
Chaos is not entirely random, but is an occult, “hidden,” or implicate order within nature. Cosmology, weather prediction, animal migration patterns, quantum mechanics, and more were affected. We now have terms like “quantum chaos,” and chaotic planetary motion. Chaos is a major influence from the microcosm to the macrocosm.

Creation came out of chaos, is surrounded by chaos and will end in chaos.

Maarten Vanden Eynde

Genetologic Research Nr. 10, 2004 (back: 100cm x 100cm x 150cm – front: 40cm 70cm)

Maarten Vanden Eynde Genetology nr.10

Maarten Vanden Eynde Genetology nr.10

The work consists of found materials (wood-, plastic-, metal), gathered together during one month from the streets of Naples, Italy. Al the scrap is pressed into an oval hole of a 40 cm thick wall. The front side shows a flat, orderly ‘abstract’ image. The back is exploding of energy, being sucked in or puked out. The tension was so high that the wall started to crack. The seemingly quiet, almost sacral image of the front side (which is faced towards the inside space) originates from but is contradictory to the chaotic and violent back side (which is faced to the outside streets of the turbulent city life of Naples).

Big Bang Theory

februari 4th, 2006

The Big Bang Theory is the dominant scientific theory about the origin of the universe. According to the big bang, the universe was created sometime between 10 billion and 20 billion years ago from a cosmic explosion that hurled matter in all directions.

In 1927, the Belgian mathematician and Catholic priest Georges Lemaitre was the first to propose that the universe began with the explosion of a primeval atom. His proposal came after observing the red shift in distant nebulas by astronomers to a model of the universe based on relativity. Years later, Edwin Hubble found experimental evidence to help justify Lemaitre’s theory. He found that distant galaxies in every direction are going away from us with speeds proportional to their distance.

In January 1933, Lemaitre traveled with Albert Einstein to California for a series of seminars. After the Belgian detailed his Big Bang theory, Einstein stood up, applauded, and said, “This is the most beautiful and satisfactory explanation of creation to which I have ever listened.” Lemaitre’s theory, the idea that there was a burst of fireworks which marked the beginning of time and space on “a day without yesterday”, was a radical departure from prevailing scientific understandings, though it has since come to be the most probable explanation for the origin of the universe.

Lemaitre and Einstein

The big bang was initially suggested because it explains why distant galaxies are traveling away from us at great speeds. The theory also predicts the existence of cosmic background radiation (the glow left over from the explosion itself). The Big Bang Theory received its strongest confirmation when this radiation was discovered in 1964 by Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson, who later won the Nobel Prize for this discovery.

Although the Big Bang Theory is widely accepted, it probably will never be proved; consequentially, leaving a number of tough, unanswered questions.

Pre- Genetologic Research, 2000 (400cm x 400cm x 400cm)

Maarten Vanden Eynde Big Bang

Maarten Vanden Eynde

This work was made without any glue, welding, binding or screwing. All pieces are forces in a small square core. The tension is holding everything together. It creates an implosion as well as an explosion. But by having equal forces, the whole thing freezes and comes to a stand. It is representing the end as much as the beginning.

The Search for Extraterrestrial Life

februari 3rd, 2006

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration

In 1958, the United States Congress created the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA. Its purpose was to coordinate and conduct all aeronautical and space activites for the United States of America, except those of the military. Among the many programs which NASA now runs, one is the search for life outside our home planet. NASA is currently examining our neighbor planet Mars for signs of life, as well as the moons of other planets in our solar system. It has also developed highly advanced technology for the search of life outside of our own solar system, such as special radars and infrared telescopes.


For decades, debates have been common and fierce as to whether life existed on our closest eighboring planet, Mars. Many believed that other beings, Martians, did indeed exist, and were highly intelligent. Others claimed that there was no proof of this, and that life as we know it was, in fact, not possible due to the extreme conditions of the Martian environment. In 1976, NASA sent two landers, Viking I and Viking II, to the surface of Mars to determine if life did indeed exist. However, when these landers executed their experiments, they showed rather convincingly that there were no organic compounds above the one part per billion level in the upper few centimeters of the surface. The landers also reported on the extreme environment of Mars, with temperatures falling to 120o Fahrenheit (48.9oC) below 0 at night. So, for a while the debate subsided surrounding the existence of life on Mars.


In 1996, a meteor was found in Allan Hills, Antarctica. Upon examination, it was discovered that this meteor, which is 4.5 billion years old, fell to the earth 13,000 years ago, and possibly contained evidence of life on Mars. Inside the meteor, along tiny cracks, scientists found evidence of what many believe to be ancient bacteria.


There are four main clues which bring some scientists to this conclusion. One is that the meteorite is definitely of Martian origin and that it contains carbonate globules. The second is the presence of polycyclic aromatic compounds, which are complex organic molecules. The third piece of evidence is the presence of iron and other compounds which appear to be like those made by bacteria. The last, and perhaps most intriguing , is the pictures of the possible fossilized bacteria themselves. When taken separately, these pieces of evidence probably wouldnt amount to much. But what is compelling is that all of these pieces of evidence occurr within millimeters of each other.

However, skeptics still remain. Some simply arent sure, while others are certain that this meteorite contains no evidence of former life.. However, all agree that convincing evidence would contain proof that the fossils had cell walls, that the cells had been divided, and that chemicals more closely related to living organisms as we know them be found. And so, the debates continue. While these debates over ALH84001 occur, the science community continues its pursuit in finding signs of life, extant or extinct, on Mars.

Pathfinder, Sojourner

On July 4, 1997, a small spacecraft dropped onto Mars and tumbled to a stop. This pod, sent by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, will be examining and doing tests on the Mars surface. This pod, called Pathfinder, will be sending signals back to Earth concerning the atmosphere and soil. It has also deployed a small land rover, similar to radio controlled cars.


This rover, called Sojourner, has been testing the Martian rocks for their minerals. In 2002, testing will be done on a different Mars probe to see if organic compounds or amino acids are present.If it finds amino acids buried in the surface, it will be testing to determine the chirality of the molecules. If they are homochiral, then that would be strong evidence that life existed at one point on Mars. If the amino acids are racemized, then it will be difficult to determine if they originated from life. In the next several years, NASA will be sending more space craft to Mars, to continue in its quest for extraterrestrial life.

Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

If you saw the movie Contact, written by Carl Sagan, you saw a lot of people with headphones listening to static coming from outer space. Then suddenly, one person is lucky enough to receive a signal from intelligent beings elsewhere in the universe. This may seem farfetched, but real people have actually been doing this for a living.

In 1959, a magazine article by Coccini and Morrison ignited widespread interest in the idea of searching for signals sent by intelligent beings in the universe. It was not until 1971, however, that the first international Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, or SETI, meeting occurred. One year later, Oliver and Billingham, in a paper called the Cyclops Report, layed out five main points as to why an organization should be formed to officially handle the SETI issue. The conclusion that Oliver and Billingham came to in the Cyclops report was that a SETI institute should be created as an ongoing part of the total NASA space program, with its own funding and budget. In 1976, the first institutionalized SETI program within NASA was created as the SETI Program Office at Ames Research Center. In 1977, JPL created a SETI office.

Originally, the goal of SETI was to detect signals from outer space. To accomplish this, giant radar dishes were designed and built. In Arecibo, high in the mountains of Puerto Rico, a 305-meter radio telescopeis used to detect signals and survey the sky.


Its goal is to search for 800-1000 solar-type stars which are within 100 light years of the Ames Targeted Search Element. The goal of JPLs Sky Survey Element is to observe the entire sky with smaller, 34-meter telescopes. When the project is completed, it will have cost more than $108 million.

(Possible Mini Chem Window detailing the Cyclops report which sparked interest in SETI) The first item in their paper was that planetary systems were common, and that our solar system was in no way unique. Their second point was that many of these planetary systems contain at least one planet which is in the habitable zone. Oliver and Billingham also pointed out that, as shown by experiments by Miller and others, the organic compounds needed for the beginning of life may be formed in large quantities. The fourth point of the Cyclops Report was that stars typically have a life span long enough to support the evolution of life. Their last point was that if biological evolution did occur, then intelligent life would evolve.

Link to Mars:

Jim Plaxco
Martian Crater, 2005


Source: Mars Global Surveyor Narrow Angle Camera in July 1998.
The target area lies in the Cebrenia quadrangle of Mars and is centered on 33.25° latitude, 238.6° longitude. The crater is approximately 4 kilometers in diameter.

The Earth seen from the Moon

november 23rd, 2005

Maarten Vanden Eynde

The Earth seen from the Moon (2005) is a work made for an equally named exhibition curated by Marco Altavilla in the Cesare Manzo Gallery in Pescara, Italy. It’s a bruised UN blue helmet with all the placenames that are given to the moon copied on the exact same location as on the 3D map of the moon. The bumps correspond with the seas and the craters. In the exhibition, the helmet was inside a closed space, and spinning around when pushed on a button. You had to look at the helmet through a telescope.

The Earth Seen From The Moon, 2005 (25cm x 20cm x 20cm)


Maarten Vanden Eynde - The Earth seen from the Moon

The Moon is the Earth only natural satellite. It is a barren, heavily cratered world, lacking water or an atmosphere. Tidel forces have ensured that the same side of the Moon now always faces the Earth. As the Moon travels round the Earth in the course of a month, it undergoes the familiar cycle of phases. The Moon shines only by reflected sunlight; the proportion of the sunlit side visible from Earth depends on the relative alignment of the Sun, Earth and Moon, which changes continuously over the Moon’s orbital period.
The terrain on the nearside falls into two basic types: the heavily cratered, light-coloured highlands, and the darker, more sparsely cratered maria (seas).

The maria have roughly circular outlines, a relic of their formation in the early history of the Moon by the impact of large meteorites.
The way the Moon formed is uncertain, but it has existed as a separate body for around 4,500 million years. Early in its life it became hot and molten. As it cooled, the crust formed but it was heavily cratered by impact of large numbers of meteorites, the largest of which created the mare basins. These subsequently filled with dark basaltic lavas. Significant volcanic activity then ceased, at least 2,000 million years ago.
The mean distance from Earth to the Moon is 384,400 km. The Moon’s radius is 1,738 km; mean density is 3.34 g/cm3.