Pharoah's Water Pump
At a convention recently, Robert Bauer Jr. gave me a fascinating explanation of the
Great Pyramid as a huge pump for raising water out of the Nile. Lighting a fire in a
specially designed chamber at the top of one of the sloping galleries would produce a
partial-vacuum from oxygen depletion sufficient to pull in quantities of water and
discharge at a higher level through an ingenious arrangement of interconnecting chambers
and valves. For a full explanation and working model, visit http://www.thepump.org/
[Thought: Presumably, the hydraulics expert who designed this was a Pharaoh
faucet major. . .]
Note added May 18, 2000
An astute-eyed mechanical engineer by the name of Des Kavanagh has drawn my attention to
the fact that the site has been changed since I posted the above. The original made
reference to a fire being lit in the upper chamber to generate a suction lift by creating
a partial vacuum.
The new version makes not reference to this, but instead says, This pump is a great
improvement over hydraulic Ram Pumps. All water that enters the pump is pumped up. Figure
below shows one application of this versatile and efficient water pump. Des points
out, "Basically, a ram pump uses the energy in flowing water to raise a small
sidestream to a higher level. Very low volumetric efficiency, but zero running costs. The
'device' on the page violates the First Law of thermodynamics, which is the law of
conservation of mass/energy. Such a contraption is affectionately known as 'A Perpetual
motion machine of the first kind.'
Actually, I'm not persuaded that it had anything to do with being a pump. Cutting and
laying six million tons of rock seems an incredibly wasteful investment to produce a water
pump. It just seemed an interesting thought to pass on.
All the same, the incredible precision and lack of embellishment of the construction
(and numerous others around the world) do suggest more some kind of machine or scientific
instrument than elaborate tombs. (No bodies were ever actually found in the pyramids. The
evidence for their being built by the Egyptians turns out to be astoundingly slender and
very suspect.) I find I'm sympathetic to the arguments of people like Graham Hancock who
believe that these structures date from much earlier than dynastic Egypt and the other
dates conventionally attributed. For those curious to learn more, I'd
offer Hancock's Fingerprints of the Gods as a good book to start with.