EM Drive propulsion : fake or serious?

I just read this


and I saw the information on several other sites, like IGN, so it’s maybe not a joke ?

I’love to get scientists opinion on it. But others too !

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There is some interesting effect going on with it, but we don’t know enough to say if it will actually be useful for a propulsion system yet.

It’s exciting, but don’t get your hopes up, it could still turn out to be not as interesting as it seems at first.

(This is assuming it isn’t just an error, which it most likely is)

the fact that I want to know if it is really a fact or not is that an experiment confirmed the well-working of the concept, where standard model does not allow it in theory.

All I will say is that it requires further experimentation.

There’s still an uncounted error of 100 micro newtons of thrust. This means that if its fake, they have to find that error.

On the unlikely chance its not, then they need to experiment more to understand the underlying physics of what’s happening. Remember, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

Physics as we know it today doesn’t explain it, this means that the anomalous thrust is an error. The only way for it not to be error is new physics that model and explain the thrust. Since neither can be ruled out yet all that can be said more experimentation.

That’s really all there is to say and in my opinion not much more to discuss since anything else is pure speculation.


On the nasaspacefight forums, you can find 5 threads with hundreds of posts each discussing the issue in extreme depth. If you dare to read it, prepare for days if not weeks spent on that task and servere headaches.

TLDR: Various claims of reproduction of the “effect” exist, many Do-It-Yourselves enthusiast experiments are ongoing or in preparation, there is a rising amount of evidence but no “reasonably save” proof so far. Earlyest “hard” results that come from a very credible source ( the small Nasa Eagleworks team + independant verification by another NASA center ) are expected in 2016. Results can be “we found the experimental error” or “we still need more tests”.

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Which is exactly why I said what I said. I’ve read a good portion of the threads and I’m aware of the many people working on reproducing(successfully) the effect. It still needs more. That’s all there is to it.

at this point my money is on it interacting with the magnetic field of earth somehow to produce some force. Unfortunately that would kill it’s usefulness as space propulsion.

Considering the magnitude of the effect, and the reported efficiency of the “engine”, I’m just going to assume it’s a load of crap at this point. It has been, what? Two years? I don’t see progress being made on this in the next 2 decades.

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The original “inventor” has been working on it for 20 years. But his explaination model was so bad that noone took him serious until other labs started to claim reproduction.

No one is yet to take him seriously. If just thing works, it invalidates conservation of momentum. It’s Nobel prize worthy stuff.

There would be more a few fringe labs and a passing interest from government if this was real. Instead, all we have is the CIA psychic phenenon research all over again

True. I mean, even in the highly unlikely situation where that thing does work, it would be just dumb luck on the inventor’s part, since from what I’ve read he has no idea how that thing works.

yeah I exactly read the same thing, in fact a Chinese team try to test it and was surprised to see it working, when the team was expecting the opposite, nobody understands how it works but it seems that it does.

I’m personally really excited by this idea, this is why I would like to be sure that the “Chinese team” and the inventor, all of this is real.

The always relevant Atomic Rockets not only explains why it is absolutely improbable, but also why it would be very, very bad news if it worked.

On the plus side, it would explain the Fermi Paradox away! I’ll let you guess with which answer…

Data trumps armchairing.


So, where is the Nature article? Because if any of this is actually as demonstrable as some would have us believe, there would be very well publicized papers published in the most elite scientific journals.

The pages of Nature and Science are shockingly lacking these landmark papers!

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totally agree this is why i asked opinions of scientists here… is this really serious or not ?

Of course it’s serious. That they haven’t published yet is no guarantee they won’t.

It is typical of fringe research that you have kooks involved, along with proper experimenters and theorists.

It’s serious. It’s also not working.
Don’t let scientists fool you with their “it’s not yet proven it doesn’t work”. They were saying the same thing with black holes in the LHC: “Well, there are far more energetic events in the upper atmosphere every day, but we don’t actually have conclusive proof that it absolutely can’t happen”. Not that they are trying to fool you on purpose, mind you, it’s simply the way scientists are being honest.
But for everyday people, you can translate that by “Suuuuuuuure, it may happen. Also, they’re selling lottery tickets over there. And check the horse races on your way.”

If it looks like I am saying that scientists take the EM Drive too seriously, that’s because it’s exactly what I’m saying - but that’s part of their job.

The problems start when unscrupulous mass media (almost an oxymoron, though French media in particular show surprising restraint on those subjects) decide it will make a great attention-grabbing headline that isn’t quite lying - meaning it totally is but they still have a chance in court - and run with it.

Here are some relevant links - not just on this particular one, but also about how to cope with this one template of bad journalism:

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All we need to account for the current error is someone to go grab some data from a black hole and send it back in Morse code using the force of gravity.
No problem, right?


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some papers here :


Definitely seems more serious that the apparently lack of information on it let me think. Maybe nobody talks on it because there’s this problem with conservation of momentum, so everybody is afraid to risk his credibility ?

some video from the inventor (still on its idea, for long years now, it’s also important to notice it)

I don’t know if it’s real or fake, but I also know that saying that’s impossible or total crap is maybe not really a scientist approach. We already know that the standard model is not perfect, it doesn’t explain everything yet, and maybe also that what we think impossible is effectively impossible, but a phenomenon or a reaction let us believe that we found a propulsion mode where conservation is not respected, but in fact, but I don’t know why, it is, just by another way…

also there’s a FAQ :


edit again : what I said :

Q. Does the theory of the EmDrive contravene the accepted laws of physics or electromagnetic theory?
A. The EmDrive does not violate any known law of physics. The basic laws that are applied in the theory of the EmDrive operation are as follows:

Newton’s laws are applied in the derivation of the basic static thrust equation (Equation 11 in the theory paper) and have also been demonstrated to apply to the EmDrive experimentally.

The law of conservation of momentum is the basis of Newtons laws and therefore applies to the EmDrive. It is satisfied both theoretically and experimentally.

The law of conservation of energy is the basis of the dynamic thrust equation which applies to the EmDrive under acceleration,(see Equation 16 in the theory paper).

The principles of electromagnetic theory are used to derive the basic design equations.

I hope that in a few years, this will become a serious progress, instead of an error of interpretation…