$10,000 Flat earth gravity challenge

I challenge gravity deniers to provide an accurate predictive explanation for the measured downward accelerating force. I am certain this cannot be done so I am offering $10,000 to anyone that can do it.

Since many monetary challenges are poorly conceived and dishonestly issued, I will be using the Legit Challenge Framework to prevent any modifications of the parameters, personally biased judging or other common ways that people squirm out of the challenges they issue.

The official challenge is in this downloadable file:

The uncompressed TXT file’s SHA 256 Checksum is 5d2fb577748660ad30fd7a40bd5474543eae64523edd2012bdbca394b105565a

The contents of the file are reproduced below. Note that the reproduction here is not the official challenge, the downloadable txt file linked above with the matching checksum is the official challenge.


Gravity Challenge Submission from Gregory Garrett

Legit Challenge Framework v0.9b

The Law of Gravitational Attraction states that every particle of matter in the universe attracts every other with a force varying directly as the product of the masses and inversely as the square of the distance between them. Sometimes explained simply as mass to mass attraction. This manifests as a downward force with an acceleration of about 9.8 meters per second squared on objects on the surface of the earth.

The magnitude of the downward force is slightly counteracted by the rotation of the earth. This centrifugal force results in an upward force that slightly reduces the downward force.

The magnitude of the force is also affected by the slight oblateness of the earth and the elevation of the observation because this changes the distance between the centers of mass. There are other factors that affect the measured downward force however, the magnitude of the effects is exceedingly small in comparison to the previously mentioned forces.

Many flat earthers claim gravity does not exist. If gravity does not exist something must be offered to explain the measured downward force.
[Optional introductory information]

The challenge is to provide an alternative mechanism to accurately predict the measured downward force at different points on the earth without using mass in any way. This means that mass cannot be hidden or obscured in any part of the formula, directly or indirectly. Neither can constants be included that incorporate the mass of the earth or the gravitational constant.

The alternative mechanism must be described such that the predicted downward force for any location and elevation on earth can be calculated given the latitude, longitude, and elevation. Other data may be input to the formula if the data does not include measurements specific to the previously measured values for the strength of gravity or acceleration at the locations.

I provide a method, called the globe mechanism, to calculate the force due to gravity which uses the Law of Gravitational Attraction formula, the centrifugal force due to earth’s rotations, and the elevation of the observation point according to the WGS84 model. The exact formulas and methods are detailed in the Notes section at the bottom of this document.

It is known that the measured downward force is not exactly the same value everywhere on the surface of the earth. Precision measurement of this force reveals slightly different values in different areas of the earth. Several international efforts have unified the measurement of the downward force. The largest and most current one being The International Gravity Standardization Net 1971 (IGSN 71). There are thousands of documented IGSN 71 Gravity Stations all over the world. Many of these are publicly available.

Both methods will be used to predict the measured downward force at 10 published IGSN 71 Gravity Stations and compared to measured values. I will select 5 IGSN 71 Gravity Stations and the challenger will select 5 IGSN 71 Gravity Stations.
[Be very descriptive and avoid ambiguity.]

Acceptance parameters:
Each IGSN 71 Gravity Station will have the globe mechanism predictions and alternative mechanism predictions calculated. The differences between predicted values and measured values will be summed for all IGSN 71 Gravity Stations for each mechanism. The mechanism with the smallest total error shall be declared the winning mechanism.
[Provide clear parameters to define a successful solution. Include appropriate evaluation methodologies and acceptable margins of error.]
[Real world measurements absolutely require a realistic margin of error or do not qualify as a Legit Challenge.]

Submission method:
Any combination of the following methods are acceptable:

  • YouTube Video.
  • Web page hosted on your sever
  • Email submissions to mctoon@mctoon.net, entries submitted this way will be posted in their entirety on mctoon.net web site or via video on MCToon’s YouTube channel.
  • Posting on a publicly accessible place on the internet
    If there are multiple published submissions, the submitter must identify a single method as the authoritative method. The authoritative method shall be the only method evaluated when judging the challenge.
    [Video or web page or email or YouTube comment or whatever is desired.]

Submission communication method:
A notification of the submission must be sent via email to mctoon@mctoon.net. A confirmation of receipt via email will be sent back to the submitter. The submission is not complete until confirmation of receipt has been received via email to the submitter.
[Method to contact challenge organizer when a challenge is submitted. This could be a comment on the original YouTube challenge video, however these sometimes get missed so an additional method such as email, Twitter DM, SMS message, etc. can be specified to avoid missing a submission.]

FOH$10,000 and MCToon Flat Earth trophy.
MCToon Flat Earth Trophy is a hand-made trophy by MCToon himself. The trophy comes with a flying disc on the top. This also includes a globe to place on top. I ask that this trophy be displayed in a place of honor in recipients residence and ideally be featured in many, many videos. We also ask that the winner of the trophy issue challenges to prove flat, spherical, alpaca, or whatever shaped earth the winner desires. This trophy would then be passed on to the next recipient. Challenges must be issued using the Legit Challenge Framework.

FOH$10,000 is $10,000 of the money won from the Flat Out Hero’s $100,000 challenge that was won by MCToon’s submission. I will direct Flat Out Hero to send the $1000 monthly payments to the winner of the challenge. Should other challenges win and deplete the winnings before a winning solution is declared to this challenge no monetary prize shall be awarded.
[Clearly state the prize including the type of currency.]

Timing and Number of solutions:
The challenge is immediately open for all entries. At most one single winner shall be awarded.
[If more than one solution is allowed, specify. If it’s only the first correct solution, specify.]

Flat Out Hero is holding the money in escrow.
[For monetary prizes escrow is preferred as it adds legitimacy.]

MCToon is primary judge.
[Who is the judge and how it will be judged.]

Should an entry be submitted but rejected by the judge, and this rejection not accepted by the submitter, a panel of three experts shall be named in accordance with the Legit Challenge Framework specification.
The judges must be qualified in one of the following ways:

  • Professional mechanical, architectural, structural, or aerospace engineer with at least 5 years experience and currently working in the field
  • Mechanical, architectural, structural, or aerospace engineering professor at college level or higher with at least 5 years experience and currently teaching at that level
  • Physics teacher with with at least 5 years experience teaching physics at high school or college level and currently teaching at that level
    [Arbitration is required, this is to state the qualifications of the judges. See Arbitration section of the framework. Qualifications for the judges on the panel must be specified.]

The challenge has no expiration date. If a winner is ever declared and prizes are awarded, the challenge expires.
[When, if ever, does the challenge expire. If the challenge organizer specifies the challenge can end anytime with an announcement, specify the method of the announcement.]

Here is the method I will use to predict the magnitude of the downward acceleration for the globe mechanism.

I will use the value for G, the Gravitational Constant, and the mass of the earth, as measured by the experiment performed at the University of Washington, Seattle by Jens H. Gundlach and Stephen M. Merkowitz with the published title of “Measurement of Newton’s Constant Using a Torsion Balance with Angular Acceleration Feedback”. https://arxiv.org/abs/gr-qc/0006043

This is the value of G to be used: 6.674215 × 10^-11 m^3 * kg^−1 * s^−2
The value of the earth’s mass to be used: 5.972245 * 10^24 kg

I will use WGS84 system to calculate the distance from each IGSN 71 Gravity Station location to the center of mass of the earth. Specifically I will be using this web site to output the distance to the center of the earth’s mass: https://www.summitpost.org/distance-to-the-center-of-the-earth/849764. This web site details all the formulas and methods used to produce the calculations. Feel free to examine formulas documented on the page and compare to the javascript source code within the web page.

I will also use this web site to calculate the linear speed due to the earth’s rotation for the coordinates provided.

As the above listed site requires longitude and latitude coordinates be provided as a decimal degree value instead of degrees/minutes/seconds I will use this site to convert from degrees/minutes/seconds to decimal degrees: https://www.rapidtables.com/convert/number/degrees-minutes-seconds-to-degrees.html

To calculate centrifugal force I use this online calculator: http://www.calctool.org/CALC/phys/newtonian/centrifugal

I will use the formula for Newton’s law of universal gravitation: f = G * M * m / r^2
f is the force of gravity
G is the gravitational constant
M and m are the masses of the objects. I will use M to represent the mass of the earth.
r is the distance between the center of mass of the objects

Gravimeters measure the acceleration due to gravity in “gal” or “milligal” so the formula will be used to output value in m/s^2 which is converted from gals of milligals.

Using the formula f=m*a, taking “m” to be the mass of an object accelerated towards earthand substituting for “f” into Newton’s law of gravitation formula:

m * a = G * M * m / r^2
The “m” factors cancel leaving this equation:
a = G * M / r^2

I will use this to calculate the non-centrifugal acceleration due to gravity.

Next I will calculate the centrifugal force using this formula:
f = m * v^2 / r
f is the centrifugal force
m is the mass of the object
v is the lateral velocity
r is the distance between the center of mass of the objects

The calculated centrifugal force is subtracted from the non-centrifugal acceleration due to gravity to give the final predicted acceleration due to gravity.