Remember Steorn, the Irish startup who claimed to have invented a machine for creating energy out of nothing? We examined their preposterous claims on The Cow almost two years ago, here, and then again, after they comprehensively failed to reveal their stunning breakthrough to the world, here.

I’ve checked in on them from time to time, but aside from the very occasional appearance with famous personages*, there’s been absolutely no action on the Steorn Free Energy front.

Until this week.

Given the deafening silence that resulted from Steorn’s attempt to convene a panel of experts to vindicate their claims, I was pretty sure that, like so many others throughout history who’ve vaunted perpetual motion machines, the company was dead and buried. Unfortunately I was mistaken. Like a zombie that’s been struck so many times with a shovel that its spinal cord is hanging out, Steorn has staggered from the Graveyard of Improbable Claims to walk among the rational once more. Actually, they’re more like vampires come to think of it – they’ve risen freshly reconstituted, with a website makeover, and a coven of new faces, to feed again on the blood of the gullible. But the unpleasant smell of decay still lingers under the paint job.

But enough of the colourful Hammer Horror metaphors. Surely Steorn wouldn’t be brazen enough to come back with the same old crap. Surely by now they’ve got something to substantiate their preposterous claims. Well let’s see…. there’s a graph…

A Convincing Graph

…and a plastic doo-dah…

A Plastic Thing

And they’re even selling a USB Hall Probe† (at 250 quid it’s a steal – yep, that’s right – them stealing from you). But aside from that, it’s all the same crapola. They’ve made a video that features a trio of luminaries extolling the virtues of Orbo (Steorn’s supposed free energy ‘engine’) without really saying anything more profound than ‘Gee whiz! Ah woonta believed it unless I sawr’n it with me own eyes!’. Unsurprisingly (to me at least) none of these boffins turns up on the first five pages of a ProprietarySearchEngine™ search. C’mon Steorn! If you’re going about spruiking your new Solution to the World’s Problems™, get some people with credibility to wave your flag! That is, of course, unless you can’t…

What else have we got… oh yeah! There’s an explanation of how Orbo works! Hang on now:

Orbo is based upon time variant magnetic interactions, i.e. magnetic interactions whose efficiency varies as a function of transaction timeframes.

It is this variation of energy exchanged as a function of transaction time frame that lies at the heart of Orbo technology, and its ability to contravene the principle of the conservation of energy. Why? Conservation of energy requires that the total energy exchanged using interactions are invariant in time. This principle of time invariance is enshrined in Noether’s Theorem.

Aha! [Slaps hand on forehead] So obvious! In other words, what you’re saying is:

‘Crap crap crap crapola, crappity crap, big words, confusing technical jargon, more crap and then some crap.’

It all seems so simple in retrospect! If only I had thought of using magnets to make things go round and round forever and generate electricity in the process! Oh wait… I DID! In third grade! And then one day (the next day, as I recall) I learned from my science teacher, Mr Smythe,‡ that science is not what you want to happen, but what actually happens, and I gave up my dream of becoming the Henry Ford of the Free Energy Age.

So. What’s the game with Steorn? Can they possibly be the stellar kinds of bozos that they seem? Or have they simply outsmarted everyone with a hi-tech shell game? They’re certainly getting plenty of publicity, and now they’re selling training courses, so I’m sure they’ll fleece enough idiots of their cash to keep annoying us for at least another couple of years.

But one thing Steorn ain’t EVER going to do, is make a machine that outputs more energy than is put into it. Ever. Come back in ten years and tell me I’m wrong Steorn. Twenty, then. What the heck, I’ll give you a hundred!

Now, back to my workshop. The antigravity machine is a-l-m-o-s-t finished…


*The woman in the middle of the photo is Mary McAleese, the President of Ireland. Steorn’s CEO, Sean McCarthy, is the man with the smug grin standing to her left.

†It’s basically just a gadget for measuring magnetic field strength. Ho hum.

‡Very curiously, Mr Smythe was a Christian. It was from this point that I understood that even very intelligent people could be hoodwinked, if they weren’t brave enough.