Have you ever tried bungee jumping? According to Collins dictionary, bungee jumping is a sport in which a participant jumps from a high bridge, building, etc, secured only by a rubber cord attached to the ankles. The English word “bungee” doesn’t have a clear origin, some sources suggest that “bungee” means “anything thick and squat” from West Country dialect, other sources indicate that it is from “bungie”, slang for India rubber or just unknown.
It was in the city of Bristol, where the first modern bungee jumps were made in 1979 from the 250-foot (76m) Clifton Suspension Bridge until New Zealander A.J. Hackett made his first organized commercial jump from Auckland’s Greenhithe Bridge in 1986.
A few months ago, a video went viral on the internet that portrayed German researchers testing successfully a wireless bungee jumping mechanism. Scientists exploited the phenomenon of repulsion that magnets display. In magnetism, opposite poles attract, while same poles repel. Therefore, they placed 4 strong magnets with a certain polarity on the floor in the form of a square. The jumper also had a magnet attached to his body, which had the same polarity as the magnets placed on the ground. As soon as the volunteer jumped, the magnets went into action and repelled the magnets on his body. This prevented the volunteer from falling to the ground and initiated a bungee-like motion. Is wireless bungee jumping possible?
The three minute footage starts “imagine if we could combine extreme sports with science into one experiment…” the wireless trend has expanded to different facets of life and in this case, to extreme sports.
Unfortunately, although several physics experts could claim that in theory, this jump is definitely possible, this documentary is a commercial campaign to promote “Wireless Charging Collection” of a popular Swedish company.
Now that the idea of wireless bungee jumping is out there, however, we can all hope to see something like this in the future.
Ana, Smith’s School of English Fukushima