Innovation – It’s what got us through the Dark Ages, polio and Celine Dion. But over the years, instead of moving forward, some scientists and inventors have taken a few steps back, while others have plumbed into the depths of dumb luck.
By far, mans greatest invention has been the creation of the wheel that set him on the path of success. Although not every invention scores high on the scale of usefulness, but we should always remember that Thomas Edison didn’t create the light bulb without failing first. However, taking a look at these interesting inventions most of us would probably eat our words philosophizing about the hit and trial methods.
10. The Nucleon
Ford’s crazy concept when they actually toyed with the notion of creating a nuclear powered car. The Ford motor company eager to show the public that they were on the cutting edge of innovative design came up with a totally insane concept of toying with nuclear power. The concept of using a nuclear powered engine was developed in 1958 and the vehicle was supposed to be powered by a small nuclear reactor at the rear. The Nucleon was designed to use a steam engine powered by uranium fission comparable to how nuclear submarines work.
However, the idea of designing a full fledged Nucleon models was terminated when questions were raised regarding the hazards of having radiations from the nuclear reactor in a car. Ford, nonetheless, built a model of the Nucleon half the size of an average car and displayed it at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.
9. The Rocket Belt
A type of a rocket pack, the Rocket Belt was a low power propulsion device designed for military purposes. The primary uses of the Rocket Belt were to overcome smaller obstacles and spying. Created in the early 1960s, the Rocket Belt became one of the most intriguing flying inventions that failed.
There rocket belt failed on all accounts. It was too loud to provide safe spying, there was only enough fuel for 21 seconds trip, it was too complex to fly and fire weapons at the same time and it did not assure a safe controlled landing. One of these Rocket Belts is on display at the Smithsonian Institution's, National Air and Space Museum.
8. Peace Prize
Stephen Bolliger, Steffen Ross, Lars Oesterhelweg, Michael Thali and beat Kneubuehl of the University of Bern Switzerland determined by experiment which hurts more – being smashed over the head with a full bottle of beer or with an empty bottles. Since this crazy invention couldn’t actually grab the Nobel Award; they definitely managed to grab the 2009 Ig Nobel Peace Prize.
An inherent problem in an experiment of this nature was finding volunteers agreed to be brained with a beer bottle in the name of science. The scientists overcame this obstacle by dropping steel balls onto full and empty beer bottles. They found that the empties were sturdier than there full brethren because the gas pressure from the liquid produces additional strain on the glass.
7. Chemistry Prize
Javier Morales, Miguel Apátiga, and Victor M. Castaño of Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México won the Ig Nobel Prize for creating diamonds from tequila.
As if people already didn’t have any less reason to love the alcoholic drink, it seems they can spill a little on the bar and create diamonds. Of course, you will have to heat it up to 536 degrees Fahrenheit and do a bunch of hocus pocus before you can place it on your finger.