Back Yard in Motion
Narberth, PA


The Cyclotron (A Particle Collider)

Swirl a SquirrellThe cage wheel is 8 feet in diameter.

It is held in position by 16 very thin stainless steel cables.

Tapered roller bearings inside the vertical shaft carry the weight of the assembly and allow rotation in the horizontal plane perpendicular to the vertical shaft. The large sail is fixed to the vertical shaft. This orients the wheel into the wind with the slightest breeze on the sail providing the horizontal rotation.

The wheel rotates on roller bearings on the angled shaft that is 45 degrees to the horizontal. Squirrels provide the rotation. Because, in order to access the fuel chamber – the peanuts, the squirrel must enter an access port that is next to the peanuts but separated from the peanuts by a fence. The squirrel must travel around the full circle, grab one peanut, then reverse travel around the circle and exit the port.

So that with a squirrel inside the cage, there is almost constant compound rotation of the assembly in the horizontal plane and the wheel in the angled plane. The effect is best described as that of the plate on top of the juggler’s stick when the juggler slows the plate down.

The cyclotron effect occurs with two squirrels in the machine. The particles colliding are the squirrels.

Average Daily Requirement: 150 ppd (peanuts per day)

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