Other Realms Contact Seekers
The False Reality Of Paranormal Equipment
All objects constantly emit infrared radiation as a function of their temperature. The human eye cannot detect infrared light. But infrared energy can be detected electronically.
If spirits are drawing energy to perform paranormal activity then they would necessarily be charged. Performing paranormal activity would require the transfer of some energy due to work. That energy is typically in the form of heat. If we make this assumption then what tool or equipment should be used to measure that energy? A popular ghost hunting tool is the SLS or Kinect Sensor type device, based on a belief that spirits don’t exist in the visible light range, sensing their heat (or lack thereof) is the best way to hunt them down.. but there is absolutely no factual proof that a ghost or spirit is seen any better under infrared or ultraviolet than it is under visible light. The number of false positives is much higher under these methods which contributes this method to being “the loudest voice in the room” when it comes to paranormal detection devices. Lets talk about that.
The most common line of explanation without factual proof is that “Spirits need or use energy” to manifest. Stories tell of them draining camera and other equipment batteries or even using a person’s energy itself. So, if energy cannot be destroyed, only transferred, it should be detectable, right?
Solicity an electrical engineer’s opinion on this topic, upon his analysis he states, “the Kinect Sensor system was intended to be positioned in a fixed location. It requires multiple samplings of its viewed area to build its reference table of “points”. It does this by comparing fixed points with those it develops by the movement in its field of view. The fixed points such as a door frame, table, couch, etc. are noted, and since they never change positions, are used as fixed reference points. Other points which change position are noted too; these are the ones the camera looks at to form the figures. The problem is the camera comes fitted with a handle to carry it around. As such all points are constantly moving. Ask yourself, How can a reference be built if all points are constantly changing as the camera is carried around?”
The idea of carrying such a device around runs contrary to what its designers recommend and how they develop the database with regards to fixed points. The Kinect protocol is not intended to be mobile; the designers even say as much. The device is forced to compensate and make guesses as it tries to account for repositioning. But that is great for false triggering. I don’t remember any of the popular ghost TV shows ever talking about the false positives! Taking this one step further myself, I used a Kinect system setup and kept it stationery. Instead, I moved objects in the room which of course had already been mapped by the system. When I moved the objects, they became stick figures, thus reinforcing the electrical engineer’s opinion. Have you seen any stick figure anomalies from a stationery SLS-type video setup? Did you ever notice how at times the stick figure begins to appear to be dancing, its arms reaching out, or gets distorted? The camera just keeps drawing the lines between the points originally established. This is why that happens. We cannot say conclusively what constitutes a spirit or its ability to interact with the physical world. How dependable is a device in which we have no idea how it reacts with its target?
Not wanting to assume that ghosts are only around in the dark of night, I decided to test the fact that any reflective object in the room will bounce the I.R. light back just like a mirror. To test this reflectivity, I did a Kinect Sensor setup at my desktop computer, this time doing it during daytime. The indirect light coming in through the windows was the only light source. I wanted to also test whether the device could detect visible light as well as the infrared spectrum.
I starting moving objects around in the daylight lit room. Stick figures were being created. The most prominent stick figure came from a reflection of outside daylight against a door edge as I moved the door and is the photo accompanying this article. The stick figure was created and disappeared based on door movement. The sensor not only sees emitted infrared light (thermal radiation) it also sees reflected infrared light. Another observation was that size of the figure was relational to the target. In some cases a “hoodie” placed over a chair grew legs and arms, just as the algorithm is supposed to do. Distance from the device was also a factor per the design of the device. The target had to be within a specific area. This proved that visible light as well as the infrared spectrum affects the device and the target limits reinforce the fact that no alleged spirit activity ever (translated: NEVER) shows the stick figure to walk or move in a particular direction from a stationery sensor.
One last test was to place an IR Pass filter in front of the sensor. Its continued response proved a triggering by IR light. I then put an IR blocking filter in front of the sensor. Again, a response was triggered. The results indicate a response to both visible and infrared light, but most likely with a cumulative lesser total sensitivity response than either by itself.
Finally, if it was truly believed that the Kinect Sensor type hand held cameras could pick up spirits, why wasn’t anyone also simultaneously using a separate dedicated infrared camera (not SLS) pointed at the subject area and taking video and/or pics as well? Wouldn’t this infrared camera be able to see the same spirits?
Now, don’t take my word for it when it comes to testing the capabilities of this device to detect ghosts in the infrared spectrum. The following is taken from a Q&A I personally had with Dr. Eduardo Perini Muniz, who does research in Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, Materials Science and Condensed Matter Physics. Dr. Muniz has been measuring infrared spectra using Fourier-transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) since 2001 (long before the SLS was introduced to the ghost hunting world).
Q. Have you ever encountered an anomaly in that spectra that was unexplained to you?
A. Nope, I`ve seen false peaks due to problems in the machine or other limitations and it is not always possble to identify all compounds in a sample but FTIR never suprised me with anything that might be called an anomaly.
Q. it is my understanding that radiation exerts a pressure. With Infrared light being a form of electromagnetic radiation, I was wondering if pressure could be detected in it, and if so what, if anything could cause a disturbance in that spectrum that could also register and be measured?
A. OK, for a photon propagating freely p = hf/c where f is frequency c is speed of light in vacuum, h is PLanks constant and p is momentum. Pressure exerted by this photon in a given area would be (dp/dt)/A adapting the classical formulas. I never saw any macroscopic effect of this pressure anywhere. Even using a huge number of photons their momentum is too small for a change in it to be easily measured.
To give an idea, visible light has frequencies that are about ten times greater than those of IR photons and you do not feel a force pushing you back when you turn on a lantern.
Q. can you comment on Raman spectroscopy as related to evidence of anomalies that might be related to the paranormal?
A. I do not know any application to Raman related to the paranormal. Both Raman and Infrared are vibrational spectroscopies very useful to characterize materials through their atomic vibrational modes. Even considering the sensitivity of Raman I never saw or heard anything about it being used for paranormal investigations.
Paranormal equipment sellers are getting rich without responsibility of content, hoping you don’t put too much thought or study into how their equipment really functions. Some of the equipment out there seem to be legit scientific devices that can coincidentally add to the validity of evidence captured. In future posts I will cover my opinion of the basic functionality & importance of such devices in paranormal investigations. I will challenge you to consider the possibility, though, that some of the other devices as well just don’t stack up!
In the end, all this boils down to is that this article is “MY” opinion, but if I am in search of an empirical paranormal reality, I cannot sensibly consider using this device for ghost hunting. I’ll leave the ‘co-created or manufactured’ evidence of the paranormal to the popular ghost TV shows.
I’ll be seeing you……….. but NOT with the SLS-type camera.