|Saint Petersburg Branch of the Russian Humanist Society|
|The Fuss Over Science|
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The lines of V. Mayakovsky automatically come to mind when you think about today's fundamental science, "Poetry is the same as the mining of radium: a year of labor to produce a gram…" This relates to science to an even greater degree. Every step forward is provided by a scientist with great difficulty. So would all of world science would move forward at a snail's pace, if no naturally gifted person appears among us who embraces a multitude of spheres of knowledge with his titanic mind and begins to advance into the unknown with colossal speed? This person is Viktor Ivanovich Petrik.
The orbit of his interests is simply enormous. He assesses what he has done modestly, with an understanding of his exceptionalness.
"I am the first in the world to obtain gemstones of any size and color. A ruby is acquired in nature from the depths of the Earth under the highest pressure, temperature, and highest vacuum" (It would be interesting to know, where Mr. Petrik found "the highest vacuum" in the depths of the Earth? - Eh. K.)
"I am the first to create the technology of single-crystal silicon. This is a remarkable achievement. My discoveries are unique. The world has seen nothing like them. I have surpassed science by 20 years with these inventions ".
"Yes, a scientific discovery has been established in the technology of purification…The phenomenon of the interaction of nuclear spins of hydrogen with graphenes…This discovery…is a serious, first-class discovery. Behind it is a train of future improbable and very favorable events for all people…And the golden section…has been established…"
"I have created systems to purify water previously unachievable with any technology. They allow sky-blue drinking water to be obtained from any contaminated source. This is an epochal event not only for Russia but also for the entire world". "I have concentrated my efforts today on questions of solar energy. I have created technologies to obtain super-pure silicon…"
"I work on the basis of the gas-phase method of cleaning soils. Results have been obtained. They are unique".
In reply to the question of what he thinks of N. Tesla, Petrik modestly noted; "I consider this person a genius…But in some problems I have gone a bit further…" He is intoxicated by whatever he has lightly touched, everything (even long discovered) he makes for the first time in the world, but science will approach the level of his achievements in about 20 years…
From a video clip about Petrik: "Don't try to understand anything! It is unreal to understand! As soon as you draw in knowledge something will go wrong…nothing will come of it!"
Any physicist who has mastered the revelations of the "genius of the 21st century" will immediately say that we are observing here a mixture of an unfounded megalomania with a depressing ignorance. It requires step after step to comment on the errors of the representative of "private science" who is sheltered by high-level bureaucrats. No matter what, V. I. Petrik was the winner of the "United Russia" contest in the "Clean Water" program, having in passing solved the problem of turning radioactive water into drinking water "of the highest quality". Viktor Ivanovich (together with B. V. Gryzlov) has a patent, "Means of Purifying Water From Radioactive Waste". This is the first case in the history of the State Duma since czarist times when a chairman of parliament burdened with a multitude of very important state responsibilities has found time to register a complex technological patent.
This is how the 2 February 1995 issue of the newspaper Izvestia described V. I. Petrik: "…In December 1984 he was sentenced to 11 years imprisonment with confiscation of property. He was convicted on Article 13 of the Criminal Code: from swindling to attempted robbery, from extortion to perjury. In January 1989 he was paroled". As we see this is not about the "economic crimes" of Soviet times, which are today not considered crimes.
Modern science is so broad that no genius is able to make any tangible contribution to such varied fields as crystallography, nanotechnology, gamma lasers, the development and creation of new, stable chemical elements (this is the latest innovation of Viktor Ivanovich). We add that V. I. Petrik has no education in the natural sciences.
But nevertheless it ought to be recognized that Petrik has a record of several real deeds: he has grown some crystals, and he has mastered the technology of purifying water surfaces from oil and other contaminants. Only did he think this up?
In front of me are two patents. Patent N? 2050329 issued on 20 December 1995, "Means of Purifying Water of Oil and Water-Repellent Liquids"; the authors are A. V. Smirnov, O. G. Orlov, P. N. Golipad, L. T. Vyal'chenkov, and Yu. N. Koryakin. The essence of the invention is "processing of a water surface with enhanced graphite".
And now Patent N? 2184086 issued on 27 June 2002, "Means of Removing Oil, Petroleum Products and/or Chemical Contaminants from a Liquid From the Surface". The author is V. I. Petrik. The patents are practically identical and it remains a riddle on what basis Rospatent made a favorable decision about the twin patent. And in both cases this is about the use of thermally enhanced graphite.
And now about the "unique" developments of V. I. Petrik to grow crystals. This technology was developed in the RAS's Institute of Crystallography and the State Optical Institute (SOI) back when Vitya Petrik was in school…The technology of growing a multitude of artificial gemstones, including emeralds, rubies, etc. was well developed by the time the Soviet Union collapsed. Not long before the collapse of the Soviet Union SOI developed and ordered from industry a batch of the most perfect Rostov Omega apparatuses. But the Institute could not buy them: at that time the military industrial complex of the country was collapsing and SOI and its workers were actually thrown to the will of fate, left without financing. And V. I. Petrik bought dozens of these apparatuses. The workers of SOI who were left without the means of survival reproduced the technology of growing gemstones for him. So there is reason to think that the main capital from which the "private science" of V. I. Petrik started appeared not as the result of our "gifted" genius, but as the result of technologies and deprived "scientific hacks" whom he bought up dirt cheap and who restarted the production of gemstones for Viktor Ivanovich.
Of course, an element of doubt gnaws at the reader: that may be so, but didn't Petrik handle the problem of MTBE which paralyzed the United States of America in fear? And what, didn't George H. W. Bush unsuccessfully invite Viktor Ivanovich to his birthday party? And haven't so many prominent political figures shaken the hand of our genius in photographs in the Internet? Isn't this true? True, but not entirely.
The problem of MTBE (methyl tertiary butyl ether) actually exists in the US. It is true that no one in the US knows anything about V. I. Petrik and his brilliant technology. They have their own technology, in particular the processing of a stream of water coming out of a shaft with a beam of electrons. Such a beam easily and simply breaks down organic molecules. And that's all.
Well, how about the invitation from George H. W. Bush? Yes, there was no invitation. There is a legitimate practice in the US of collecting money for party treasuries. Breakfasts, lunches, dinners, are regularly announced for one occasion or another, inviting important politicians (the President, Presidential candidates, etc.). American newspapers and the Internet are full of such announcements. Here is a fragment from one such announcement: "The price of the dinner is $1000. A ticket including dinner and a photograph with the President is $5000. The proceeds will go to the Republican Party fund". So if you have some money you can shake hands with the entire American political Olympus.
And now we turn to the official results of the tests of radioactive water from the Techensky series of reservoirs when passed through Petrik's apparatus: "The tests showed that the apparatus does not provide the stated criteria of purification. A number of serious problems were encountered in the process of operation associated with incomplete treatment by equipment assemblies and the imperfect operation of processing methods. In individual cases when the capacity of the apparatus was reduced from 1200 to 100 liters/hour filtrates were obtained with radioactivity in a range of from 20 to 40 Becquerels per liter. It ought to be recognized that the processing methods have not been worked out and it would be premature to speak of this as a finished technology". The authors of the document quoted mention one other serious defect of Petrik's apparatus - the rapid clogging of the filter from radioactive precipitate depositing on it.
We add that according to current standards the permissible specific activity for strontium-90 in water should not exceed five Becquerels per liter. Thus, even at the lower capacity of the apparatus the norm is exceeded by four to eight times.
There is no mention here of any water fit for drinking. This document was sent to Rosatom from Chelyabinsk. V. I. Petrik knows about it.
One has to be amazed when from the podium of the 12th International Economic Forum Mr. Petrik, said without blushing that his apparatus managed to separate "drinking water of the highest quality" from liquid radioactive waste in tests at Chelyabinsk. In his words, at a meeting with journalists at the Radium Institute on 9 November 2007 B. V. Gryzlov declared that Petrik's apparatus purifies radioactive water to a level of one Becquerel per liter. Alas, nothing like this is mentioned during the tests.
If Petrik's filters are being made on the basis of nanotechnology they can present a danger to the health of people inasmuch as they will "dust" with nanoparticles capable of entering human organs together with water. But in this event, in selling the filters Petrik is violating a decree of G. Onishchenko, the Chief State Medical Officer of the Russian Federation, and the residents of Novgorod Oblast' do not know that they have become his test rabbits.
Our great trailblazer speaks with his customary modesty of his "fantastic strategic successes", "what no one in the world has yet done, the separation of tritium from water". One does not even know how to react to this. First, to avoid panic among the population we will note that tritium almost doesn't exist on Earth. It simply isn't in the ordinary water which we drink. Appreciable quantities of tritium are formed only in some types of nuclear reactors. A number of laboratories in the world were dealing with the problem of extracting tritium from water long before V. I. Petrik. How can one beat on drums about technologies which have long existed and have been widely used in the world, giving the impression that we (that is, V. I. Petrik) are ahead of the entire planet?
Inasmuch as one encounters the word "discovery" quite often with V. I. Petrik some clarity ought to be introduced about this. Such a concept exists in the scientific community. The only criterion that a scientist has made a discovery is recognition by the scientific community of a publication by the scientist. A scientific publication allows other scientists to reproduce the new effect, that is, to be convinced that it actually exists. Alas, Viktor Ivanovich cannot be praised for scientific publications. From where do V. I. Petrik's discoveries come? The Academy of Natural Sciences (RANS) of which he is a member registers "discoveries" of their members in quantities immeasurably greater than the discoveries which the world scientific community recognizes.
Three years ago the "United Russia" party announced a "Clean Water" program. A national competition was held and "first place was won by the household filters and the systems for the industrial purification of water of the Limited Liability Company Golden Formula developed on the basis of a discovery by Academician of the RANS V. I. Petrik which is designed to purify water in schools, day care institutions, and health care institutions".
Only how did all this happen in fact? The facts cited in issue N?6 of 2009 of the journal "Water Supply and Sewer Systems" hardly inspire optimism. As the editor of this journal confirms the largest producers of filters to purify water were not notified about the competition and accordingly did not participate in it.
Professor N. S. Serpokrylov compared the filters of four different firms. Among them was the filter of Golden Formula produced by V. I. Petrik's firm. The difference was only in price: the cost of Petrik's filter turned out to be 2.5 to 3.5 times more than the others.
A report of the Scientific Research Institute of Man and Environmental Hygiene noted an alarming symptom - 100% of the water fleas died in the first 10-15 minutes of the experiment in water which had passed through the Gerakl filter of Petrik's firm. The authors of the report think that the death of the water fleas might be connected with the microparticles washed out from the sorbent filtering into the organism of the water fleas.
The journal cited the results of tests at [the firm] Vodokanal St. Petersburg. The conclusion: "The tests of the apparatus do not meet the established criteria of assessing the success of tests conducted for microbiological criteria".
After the journal was published a man called the editor calling himself Akhmet and said that no one would give a plugged nickel for his life. Of course, Mr. Petrik can object that this was a fantasy. But Academic Ye. B. Aleksandrov, who has repeatedly received letters via e-mail with threats, has also been subjected to persecution. The reason? At one time Aleksandrov did not speak very well of Petrik in some (unpublished) article which "surfaced" on the Internet and then demanded that the Academician make up for his guilt by writing an article about Petrik in the correct style, on other words, enthusiastically. After this ultimatum Aleksandrov began to receive letters with threats from unknown supporters of Petrik. Petrik himself gave the impression that the letters had no relation to him and simply has no idea who is doing this. Nevertheless, sometimes Viktor Ivanovich himself switches to direct threats. For example, in one of the telephone conversations where he insisted on a meeting, which Ye. B. Aleksandrov refused, Petrik suddenly exploded and declared that he had secret inventions like 20 ways of killing a person. In Aleksandrov's words, Petrik was simply choking with hatred and Aleksandrov hung up. The same day Petrik left on the answering machine a message which was to intimidate the Academician, "You have fallen into an improbably difficult situation and need all your puny intellectual capabilities. You think that you're very clever but now you have reached a level when you persecute Ivanov, ministers, and you accuse Gryzlov of bribery and try to create newspapers in the American press which will come to Russia and expose everything. You have fallen into an extremely serious situation. I don't care what happens to you but you are tripping up those, very seriously tripping up other scientists from the RAS. But you still have a chance to call it off, meet, make a decision, and make all this known or not". Yevgeny Borisovich does not know for what offenses and how he is persecuting S. B. Ivanov and ministers. And of what bribes he accuses B. V. Gryzlov he also does not know. All this is elementary blackmail where all the means are fair. So the real Petrik appears. But the Petrik whom high-ranking bureaucrats see and hear moreover take him as a talented inventor and scientist. This is a good show. Not for nothing did Mr. Petrik study to be a psychologist: to create a favorable impression about oneself and to throw dust in people's eyes - this he has learned to perfection.
Even some scientists have swallowed this bait. The latest achievement of V. I. Petrik is the development of an electrical source which converts the thermal emissions of surrounding bodies into electrical energy. What is interesting about this source? They write that aluminum and graphite serve as electrodes. It is not known what the electrolyte in the source is but it is intentionally being used. It is said that the source is not susceptible to a short circuit, as during heating it gives a large current to the circuit, that it is an everlasting battery. Finally, it will replace a solar battery.
Alas, all this enthusiasm is absolutely groundless. To begin, we will note that the operation of Petrik's source from the heat of surrounding bodies located next to it in thermal equilibrium contradicts the Second Law of Thermodynamics. That's all, there's nothing more to discuss. Petrik's source is an ordinary electrochemical element with a very large internal resistance. That's why he is not afraid of a short circuit. If only instead of the tricks with which Mr. Petrik deceived some scientists (by the way, not physicists) he had worked to conduct real tests of his source then he would have quickly been convinced that this element differs in the output energy from batteries on sale, but not for the better…*
Ehduard Kruglyakov, Academician of the RAS,
Translated by Gary Goldberg
* The text is reduced.
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