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  #31  
Old 27 Oct 09, 23:32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Doctor View Post
You can't "saw through a block of solid limestone and show" me mineralogy and geochemistry that don't exist in limestone... Anywhere in the world.

Once again... From one of the actual peer-reviewed scientific publications...
"The pyramid samples contained microconstituents (μc's) with appreciable amounts of Si in combination with elements, such as Ca and Mg, in ratios that do not exist in any of the potential limestone sources. The intimate proximity of the μc's suggests that at some time these elements had been together in a solution. Furthermore, between the natural limestone aggregates, the μc's with chemistries reminiscent of calcite and dolomite—not known to hydrate in nature—were hydrated. The ubiquity of Si and the presence of submicron silica-based spheres in some of the micrographs strongly suggest that the solution was basic. Transmission electron microscope confirmed that some of these Si-containing μc's were either amorphous or nanocrystalline, which is consistent with a relatively rapid precipitation reaction."
Right here in Colorado...and yes, I damned well can. Colorado is loaded with the stuff, complete with inclusions - which you call "aggregate."

Stop trying to be such a know-it-all.
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  #32  
Old 28 Oct 09, 07:08
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Timbers needed to make forms... the rollers upon which blocks were moved were wood... such timbers needed to support & brace other forming materials would be a miner quantity in comparison.

To this day, a common forming material is plywood... and yes, the Egyptians had plywood (aka known as veneers) as far back as 3000 -3500bc. Many pieces of ancient Egyptian furniture are made of 'plywood' veneers.

The slurry used is essentially the same stone as the blocks, rendered into a slurry & emplaced within forms. Once one block is cast in place, one needs only 3 sides of a form, as the single block is the 4th side. When a slurry or concrete is poured against an existing object - especially one of the same materials, it creates a cold joint & the surface of the newly poured slurry or concrete block is mirrored - all imperfections or marks upon the 1st block - in the cold joint surface of the new block.

As more & more blocks are cast in place, adjacent blocks become the form, again, those blocks being an effective 'positive' of the block adjoining, creating a negative of those surfaces within the faces of the new block at the cold joint when cast. As the process advances, there becomes a circumstance where many blocks will need only 1 or 2 formed sides as adjoining blocks already form the other sides. It really ain't rocket science at all... proper planning makes the need of forms minimal as things progress

There would be huge amounts of masonry detritus produced by mason on-site as they conduct their craft upon stones that were physically moved into place & crushing for the purpose of aggregates would not be required in any major operation. What would be considered aggregates in these cast in place stones are - generally - already existing in the stone in the form of sea shells as well as the presence of other sea bottom materials which, consequently, are not in a predominately natural 'horizontal' state within the 'poured materials due to mixing which would occur... which is contrary to the natural horizontal state which exists within the non-cast stone.

Nobody expects anybody to simply believe it because it has been said here... further exploration of links already provided would help one understand all of what has been said or put forth so far without so much personal BS being brought to the table. Anybody that has looked beyond this discussion & further into what has been said can easily see - at the very least - that there is more than simple opinion involved in this topic.

Cheers, mates!


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  #33  
Old 28 Oct 09, 07:37
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Originally Posted by Admiral View Post
There would be huge amounts of masonry detritus produced by mason on-site as they conduct their craft upon stones that were physically moved into place & crushing for the purpose of aggregates would not be required in any major operation. What would be considered aggregates in these cast in place stones are - generally - already existing in the stone in the form of sea shells as well as the presence of other sea bottom materials which, consequently, are not in a predominately natural 'horizontal' state within the 'poured materials due to mixing which would occur... which is contrary to the natural horizontal state which exists within the non-cast stone.
Good point. The creation of the aggregate is an unintended consequence of the quarrying process.
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  #34  
Old 28 Oct 09, 09:02
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Indeed... and in this case, the aggregate can be/was rendered into slurry, not used as a seperate component such as gravel in modern concrete. Hense, all aspects & characteristics of the slurry, thus the end product will be almost identical, in general terms & composition, as the natural quarried stone blocks that were set - with the exception of minute elements added to the mix, either intentionally or by simply falling into the mix from tools, workers or other means of airborne or workerborne detritus. (hair, soil, etc...)

Add several thousand years...

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  #35  
Old 28 Oct 09, 11:08
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mountain Man View Post
Right here in Colorado...and yes, I damned well can. Colorado is loaded with the stuff, complete with inclusions - which you call "aggregate."

Stop trying to be such a know-it-all.
I think this is just a matter of my posts being worded in a way that assumes a basic understanding of geology on the part of the reader.

I posted this:

You can't "saw through a block of solid limestone and show" me mineralogy and geochemistry that don't exist in limestone... Anywhere in the world.


If you sawed through a block of natural limestone and analyzed it; you would find the mineralogy and geochemistry of a natural limestone.

The pyramid blocks that were analyzed did not have the mineralogy or geochemistry of natural limestone.
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  #36  
Old 28 Oct 09, 13:43
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I've read the articles and seen the presentation. While it is an interesting and apparently workable theory, the key elements that make it fact are missing.

Ash was needed as part of the recipe, which would have involved burning massive amounts of wood. While obtaining large quantities of wood was within the Egyptians' capabilities, such large burning pits would have left obvious archaeological traces adjacent to the pyramids, which have not been found to date.

The large number of molds needed to create such blocks would have required relatively smooth dimensional lumber. I have yet to see any evidence of how this would have been. produced.

I heard and read repeated claims about the strength of such cast blocks, but failed to find any figures published by the professor showing actually crush strength. Given the weight of each successive layer upon the layers below, this is critical. Given the professor's theory that each layer might have been made entirely in the same way, it goes beyond critical and becomes mandatory.

Despite his claim to produce his blocks using only available wooden tools exactly as the Egyptians did, his workman used a modern steel-faced tamper. Points off his theory for failing to adhere to prescribed methodology. More points off because blocks of the required strength would need to be very highly compressed while setting; therefore, his single workman with a tamper has little validity beyond cosmetic appearance.

While I am not a construction engineer, I am historically aware that any failure of a pharaoh's pyramid from lack of strength due to inadequate construction techniques would have been harshly dealt with.

I have yet to see results of prolonged testing for weather exposure; however, the geo-forces used by nature to create solid limestone far outclass the tamping methods used by the professor's example, causing me to have doubts as to the durability of his "geopolymer" - nice oxymoron meaning exactly zip - blocks.

He mentions the need to "pH balance" the blocks, but fails to explain how that was measured by the Egyptians. Taste test?

Is his theory possible? Maybe. Is it now established fact? No.

Meanwhile, we can ponder this possibility for ther tomb of Pharaoh Tutenconcrete:


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  #37  
Old 01 Nov 09, 21:27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Admiral View Post
...
Sadly, this is a case where a great many archeologist & historians remain fully entrenched in their accepted beliefs, refusing to accept any evidence to the contrary. I deal with engineers (not far removed from architects, archeologists & historians in interpretation & 'there can be no other explanation or result' attitudes prevalent among a great many) all the time that won't even consider that some segment, portion or entirety of one of their designs or hypothetical 'truths' is flawed... until I physically drag or force them to the field & put them face to face with the potential result of their design - obviously & undeniably shown to be impossible, generally a result of a 'bug' in their calcs or some oversight or purposeful ignorance of some element of basic physics. It is as though 'Because I AM an Engineer, (no, not me) I need not even consider anything beyond my own notions or disciplines so learned' & the result is an arrogance that far to often blinds.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freightshaker View Post
I have also played this game. Even when presented with tangible, physical proof, they are still "right".
In a word, "no." Not in this case. Admiral and Freightshaker, you are both good guys, and this kind of argument is unworthy of you. It is Crackpot Defence #3 (#2 is "They laughed at Galileo"). It might be worth pondering that people who have actually invested and effort in the study of a topic will often disagree with zealous dilettantes like Davidovits, not because they are entrenched and refusing to accept evidence to the contrary, but because they think (a) the evidence is no damn good or (b) there is too much evidence to the contrary. Archaeology and history are messy--with careful enough cherry-picking, narrow enough blinders, and outright falsification you can "prove" anything. The strength of an argument is judged not just on what evidence is presented, but what evidence is not presented.

There is an awful lot in Davidovits' argument that I am not knowledgeable enough to pass judgment on. However where he does stray into fields where I do have knowledge, he is fantasizing. Page 4 of his page is nothing but mystical New Age BS, and throughout the entire thing he grossly misrepresents the archaeology. That's not a good start. His chain of argument also screwy and again downright deceptive in places. Try to match his evidence with his extravagant claims for the consequences of his findings (i.e. the required labor force)--you won't be able to. This is not someone who takes a great deal of effort with his science.

The sunk-without-a-trace Barsoum et al. paper from the ceramics journal (?!) was again mostly outside my comprehension, but it sent up a number of red flags. The use of unprovenanced samples was a big one. I am also surprised that telling cement from natural limestone is so incredibly hard. The data is very technical, but the interpretation of the evidence was more akin to lit. crit. than science. Even Barsoum et al. conclude:

Quote:
In summary, the simplest explanation for the presence of the plethora of mc’s, some of which appear to possess chemistries and morphologies not found in the natural stone, is that the various ions were in solution and precipitated or geopolymerized relatively rapidly. This comment notwithstanding, we hereby acknowledge that nature is quite resourceful and could have—however unlikely—produced all the microstructures examined herein [as, it turns out, could later contamination-Zem] . We believe, however, that our work presents enough evidence to entertain the possibility that crucial parts of the Great Pyramids are indeed made of reconstituted limestone; only more research will tell. (p.3795)
(Emphasis mine )

Even at its best, that is a slender reed on which to posit an extensive rewrite of technological history and propose a vast and completely archaeologically invisible industry in ancient Egypt (or to slag off a discipline). When evidence is that nebulous and difficult to interpret, my first reaction is not room-full-of-puppies excitement.

Here is another article, most of which again I did not understand, but which reevaluates Barsoum et al.'s study and finds it wanting. It's harsh.

Dipaya, Jana
2007 "Evidence from Detailed Petrographic Examinations of Casing Stones from the Great Pyramid of Khufu, a Natural Limestone from Tura, and a Man-made (Geopolymeric) Limestone"


Quote:
A reliable set of data derived from comprehensive laboratory investigations by petrographers, materials scientists, and geochemists on a range of actual pyramid samples reveals the truth about “natural” versus “man-made” origin of pyramid blocks. We should refrain from postulating a hypothesis based on results from limited investigation with a single study, with no confirmative support from other studies. Selectively producing results in favor of a hypothesis on a limited number of samples with questionable provenance from third parties, or proposing the hypothesis first and then generating results in favor of it are not proper scientific procedures. The typical alkali-aluminosilicate-based geopolymeric chemistries in the binder phases of pyramid stones are yet to be discovered. There is no foreign or man-made constituent found in the “uncontaminated” portion of the Lauer casing stone, which is identical to the quarried limestone in Tura. Detailed results on the actual mineralogy, texture, composition, and binder chemistry of the limestone in the core blocks, constituting 80 percent of the mass of the Khufu Pyramid are yet to be published, and should be required before postulating them to be “man-made”. Also yet to be demonstrated by the proponents of the “cast-in-place concrete” hypothesis is a synthetic geopolymeric limestone sample that is similar to the casing stone not only in visual appearance and bulk chemistry but also in texture, microstructure, minor constituent mineralogy, and especially in calcareous, alkali-aluminosilicate-free binder microchemistry. Based on a detailed literature survey on this debate and evaluation of all published results in light of this present comprehensive study, it is the author’s opinion that we are far from accepting even as a remote possibility of a “man-made” origin of pyramid stones.
[Emphasis mine]

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. This evidence is having trouble even getting to "adequate".
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Old 01 Nov 09, 22:36
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Thank You Greatly for the well expressed & reasonable portion of exchange with your last post, Mountain Man...

I look forward to such reasoned personal discussion as time permits.

Wes
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  #39  
Old 02 Nov 09, 04:58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Doctor View Post
I think this is just a matter of my posts being worded in a way that assumes a basic understanding of geology on the part of the reader.

I posted this:

You can't "saw through a block of solid limestone and show" me mineralogy and geochemistry that don't exist in limestone... Anywhere in the world.


If you sawed through a block of natural limestone and analyzed it; you would find the mineralogy and geochemistry of a natural limestone.

The pyramid blocks that were analyzed did not have the mineralogy or geochemistry of natural limestone.

What about the structure? One would imagine that the sedimentary layering and crystal structure growth would not be reproduced by the concrete casting process. If there are there any traces of sedimentary bedding or layering in the rocks then the theory might be sunk. Even altered dolomites could retain some evidence of stratigraphic layering. Geology, not chemistry, should be able to give us a definitive answer

BTW, because I like pictures, here is an example of what we are all talking about.



BTW, here is a paper presented in 2007 (Proceedings from the 29th conference on Cement Microsocopy) that has some interesting points, though the missus is giving that 'get off the computer and come and socialise like a human being' look, so I have only scanned through it.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/2579797/20...bate-29th-ICMA
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Old 02 Nov 09, 06:47
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I get the "'get off the computer and come and socialise like a human being' look" all the time!

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