The Giza Wave Machine

Energy from the sea? Not such a new idea after all

By Dean Talboys, August 2009

For years Egyptologists have stuck steadfastly to the belief that pyramids were intended as burial tombs for the Pharaohs even though no human remains have ever been found in one. Neither has any yielded the treasures associated with the burial of the ancient rulers such as Tutankhamen, whose tomb was where it should be in the Valley of the Kings. So it is small wonder that theories abound as to the original reason for the unique design of the Great Pyramid at Giza, and though most rely on knowledge or technology far beyond our expectations of the Egyptian civilization believed responsible for its construction, the latest theory offers a low-tech solution to a problem facing the world today – a cheap, clean and renewable source of energy.

The Great Pyramid is unique in both size and interior layout. It is truly enormous with an original baseline of 230.5m (756.2ft) and height of 146.6m (481ft), the size since reduced by plundering of the polished limestone blocks in which it was encased. The core of the structure contains an estimated 2.4 million limestone blocks which would have been placed layer by layer creating spaces for the network of chambers, passageways and shafts within. The interior features are arranged north-south on a line slightly off-center. The original entrance is on the north face and was hidden by the outermost stone blocks until the 9th century when Caliph Al-Mamoun led the first recorded exploration of the pyramid by tunneling through its structure to intercept the Descending Passage (which was quite fortuitous if he had no prior knowledge of the interior layout). The passage terminates in a Subterranean Chamber set deep into the bedrock but leads also to the Ascending Passage, the entrance to which is blocked by three large granite plugs requiring Al-Mamoun to tunnel around them to access the rest of the internal features. The Ascending Passage terminates at the junction of the passage to the Queen’s Chamber at the foot of the Grand Gallery. The former is a large room with a high vaulted ceiling made of very large limestone blocks, presumably to withstand the enormous weight of stone above. Within the east wall of the chamber there is an empty niche set slightly right of center. The blocks in the side walls of this space have been overlapped in such a way that the space reduces in width from floor to ceiling, a method referred to in architecture as “corbelling”. Directly in front of the niche the floor has been repaired where there was once a hole which was filled with rubble from a tunnel dug into the back of the niche in the search for other hidden chambers and treasure. The floor of the chamber is roughly finished and was encrusted with salt, as were the walls of the passage leading to it and parts of the Grand Gallery. The Grand Gallery is a long, narrow corridor with a very high ceiling that has been created with corbelled stone walls. The floor is flanked by ramps on either side into which have been cut 27 recesses at regular intervals with adjacent vertical recesses in the walls. The width of the sunken section of floor is the same as the ceiling (i.e. between the narrowest sections of corbelled stone walls). At the top of the Grand Gallery a high step leads along a short passage and into the Antechamber. The east and west walls of this small room are shaped in a way that suggests they held in place stones set vertically in slots. Further evidence of this remains in the form of a granite slab set just inside the entrance, however, the design of the slots into which this is set prevent it from reaching the floor. The Antechamber exits at the south into the King’s Chamber, so-called for the presence of a large stone receptacle resembling a sarcophagus. The walls and floor of this room, and the receptacle, are of granite. The ceiling is formed from five layers of large granite blocks, each layer separated by an air space. This unusual aspect of the design, believed to have been required to withstand force from above, is referred to as the Relieving Chambers, although the true ceiling of the room above this is vaulted in a manner similar to the Queen’s Chamber. Both Queen’s and King’s chambers have Airshafts leading towards the north and south face of the pyramid, however, those from the former fall short of the actual surface and have been deliberately blocked.

It is unfortunate that the internal features were assigned titles by people whose understanding of the design started and ended in Egyptian myth and legend, and quite remarkable that anyone could think a ruler powerful enough to command such an impressive tomb from the outside would contemplate such dull rooms in which to be interred. However, there are more esoteric reasons to doubt a ceremonial or funerary use. The lid of the sarcophagus is missing as are any signs of it having been used as a coffin. The unique design of the Antechamber has been excused as an elaborate system of portcullises intended to secure the King’s Chamber but appears to have had as much effect as the granite plugs at the foot of the Ascending Passage in preventing thieves from gaining access to the treasures. The Queen’s Chamber is recognized to be an incorrect description because a queen would never be buried in a tomb. Its purpose is now believed to have been as a “serdab” to house a life-sized statue of the king, but by the same token, kings were buried in a “mastaba”, which is an entirely different building to a pyramid, and whereas plenty of mummified remains have been found in mastabas, none have ever been found in the pyramids. The passageways along which his body would have been taken are nowhere more than 1.2m (4ft) high and considering the lengths ancient Egyptians went to record events with hieroglyphs in paint and relief on temple walls the Grand Gallery is quite undeserving of the title, its walls completely void of any art. Indeed, it is only a tiny piece of graffiti hidden from view in the so-called “Relieving Chambers” which Egyptologists offer as proof of the Great Pyramid’s intended use and, consequently, its date of construction, which has been put at circa 2550BCE.

Given the lack of evidence in favor of the pyramid as a tomb it comes as no surprise that a number of other theories exist for the use of the pyramids as well as the origin of the civilization that built them. The most fanciful, perpetrated by the popular TV series Stargate, is that they are of an extraterrestrial design and used to park similarly shaped spacecraft for the embarkation disembarkation of aliens. Slightly less extreme but equally testing is the idea that the pyramid has mystical and magical properties bestowed upon it by the relationship of its dimensions to universal constants like Pi and Phi as well as distances to the Sun and Moon, and the solar calendar. In amongst the more extreme claims there is the well documented and long-standing one by Chris Dunn that it was a large acoustical device using harmonic resonance to convert the earth's vibration energies to microwave radiation. The problem with Dunn's theory is the level of technology required to build it, in fact, technology that would test any civilization in history right up to the mid-20th century. And in the absence of any parts required for his machine to function he points instead to the level of machining evident in stones lying around the pyramid and, in particular, the sarcophagus in the King's Chamber, which appears to have been drilled out with a bit capable of piercing granite at a high speed. The burning question is “If it uses free energy from the Earth, why aren't we using something similar today?” However, there is reason to believe the Great Pyramid was a machine and one that was well within the capabilities of the civilization responsible for its construction.

Click to enlarge

The secret lies within the dimensions of the Grand Gallery. If you recall the width of the sunken section of floor is the same as that between the highest pair of corbelled walls. It suggests something was placed between the floor and ceiling, the most obvious being a large wheel which ran up and down the length of the gallery, it's axle sitting in the shallow groove gouged out (perhaps by its motion) of either wall at slightly less than half the distance between the floor and ceiling. It would have been supported in a cradle that rested on guide wheels set into those enigmatic recesses on either side of the ramps and walls. The next piece of this ancient puzzle lies in the Queen's Chamber or, more specifically, the corbelled niche. It housed a non-return valve which doubled as a pump to increase the pressure of sea water entering the chamber from an artificial blow hole - as the tide flowed in the swell forced water up into the chamber where it quickly flooded the passageways and Grand Gallery. The valve consisted of several boxes, one inside the other, which not only extended under pressure but also acted to increase the pressure on the innermost box from which the water was ejected, thereby allowing it to overcome pressure from the head of water already in the gallery. The corbelling in the niche was necessary to prevent the boxes from over-extending under extreme pressure.

The three granite plugs (discovered at the lower end of the Ascending Passage) were originally set within three girdle stones (discovered part way up the passage) and kept in place by wooden wedges on each side to act as drain valves. The plugs limited the rate at which the water drained from the gallery allowing it to fill more quickly than it would empty. A false floor at the foot of the gallery helped regulate the flow of water into the gallery. At rest the wooden wheel trapped the upper section of this floor preventing it from opening until sufficient water to float the wheel had filled the lower gallery. This stopped the wheel from bobbing up and down as the water pulsed in during the initial stages of filling.

The heart of the machine was located in the King's Chamber. It was a very simple arrangement of drums used to hold ropes and arranged as follows (refer to the diagram above):

  1. Ropes (red) attached to the wooden wheel passed through a line tension device in the Antechamber before being wound onto a drum located in the King's Chamber.
  2. A rope (blue) wound onto a second drum passed through the southern airshaft to the south face of the pyramid where it was attached to a counterweight.
  3. The drums were attached to the same axle and wound the (red and blue) ropes in opposite directions so that as one wound the other unwound.
  4. Ropes (yellow) fixed to the structure were wrapped around (but not attached to) another drum on the same axle. These ropes acted as a brake and were held taught by a single (yellow) rope which passed through the northern airshaft to a float device fixed on the north face of the pyramid.

The (blue) rope exited the King's southern airshaft and was attached to a dolly suspended on the south face. The stone counterweight on this dolly weighed slightly less than the wooden wheel. As the wooden wheel floated up the gallery the (blue) rope unwound as the counterweight descended. This turned the axle onto which all drums were attached and wound the (red) rope attached to the wooden wheel. When the water started to drain from the gallery the wooden wheel rolled back down the gallery because it was no longer supported by the water and so was “heavier” than the counterweight. As it descended the (red) rope unwound, which in turn wound the (blue) rope onto its drum.

The (yellow) rope exited the King's northern airshaft and was attached to a float device fixed onto the north face. At high tide the wooden block in the device floated and the (yellow) rope became slack, which released the brake allowing the wooden wheel to float up the gallery. At low tide the wooden block, no longer supported by the water, pulled on the (yellow) rope. This tightened the (yellow) ropes wrapped around the brake drum, which helped regulate the speed of the wooden wheel as it rolled back down the gallery.

The (red) ropes attached to the wooden wheel passed through a system of pulleys in the Antechamber designed to maintain the tension. This was necessary to take up any slack in the ropes when the wooden wheel was raised by successive pulses of sea water in the gallery. The design of the antechamber allowed for the assembly of the device from the top. The principle is very simple:

  1. Three pulleys are fixed in the recesses above the slots in the Antechamber walls.
  2. Four (gray) ropes fixed at the south end of the Antechamber are looped through the pulleys, under the gray slab and fixed at the north end.
  3. Two more pulleys are suspended in loops in the (gray) ropes below the fixed pulleys.
  4. Three (red) ropes pass through three pulleys fixed at the base of the Antechamber and loop through the two pulleys suspended by the four (gray) ropes.
  5. These two centrally positioned pulleys are held in tension by the pull of the (red) ropes below acting against the (gray) ropes above. As the (red) ropes become slack the excess is taken up by the (gray) ropes pulled down by the weight of the granite slab.

As described this simple use of the buoyancy provided by sea water (something with which even the Egyptians of the day would be familiar) allows the wooden wheel to be lowered and raised with the ebb and flow of the tides. The energy gained by alternately winding and unwinding the rope attached to the wheel is available as torque in the axle. The question now is “What did it drive?”

The most obvious answer is an electric dynamo. After all, every part of an iron-based machine would, in time, rust without trace. But the inclusion of a dynamo would add an unnecessary leap in technology to a mechanism which is, up to this point, well within the capabilities of a sea-faring civilization familiar with building large timber sailing ships. It also ignores the strange arrangement of granite blocks in the so-called “Relieving Chambers”. The answer could lie in the piezoelectric properties of quartz contained in the granite. Basically, when certain crystals are deformed they release a charge. The physics behind it is not yet fully understood but it is the principle behind many cigarette and stove lighters whereby a manual trigger is used to hammer a piece of quartz and generate an arc of electricity between two contacts. The same principle is employed in piezoelectric pickups attached to musical instruments whereby vibrations are converted into electrical current. By using the axle to rotate a rosined wheel against several strings (along the lines of a “Hurdy Gurdy”) a constant sound could be produced and a device of substantial proportions mounted atop the “sarcophagus” would vibrate the entire structure of the King’s Chamber and Relieving Chambers above generating current in the quartz crystals contained within the granite. So, as one door closes, another opens, and although we are still left with the problem of what to do with the electricity it generates we could, at least, be a little closer to understanding why someone went to all that trouble.

Copyright by Dean Talboys
All rights reserved.
Reprinted with permission

Dean Talboys is a Systems Analyst and author of The Stonehenge Observatory. You can find out more about the Great Pyramid at his site http://www.gizawavemachine.com and details of his research into Stonehenge including fully interactive 3D models of the site, past and present, at http://www.stonehengeobservatory.com.


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