Humanity has known Earth is round for a few millenia, and I’ve been meaning to show more methods that prove the world is not flat. I’ve had a few ideas on how to do that, but recently got an interesting incentive, when Phil Plait, The Bad Astronomer, wrote about a recently published BBC article about “The Flat Earth” society. (Most recently, rapper B.o.B. went on a Twitter rant on the topic.) Phil claims it’s ridiculous to even bother rebutting the Flat Earth Society—and I tend to agree. But the history of our species’ intellectual pursuit is important and interesting. You don’t need to denounce all science and knowledge and believe in a kooky conspiracy theory to enjoy some historical factoids about humanity’s quest for space.
155) Some people claim to have seen the curvature of the Earth out their airplane windows. The glass used in all commercial airplanes, however, is curved to remain flush with the fuselage. This creates a slight effect mixed with confirmation bias people mistake for being the alleged curvature of the Earth. In actuality, the fact that you can see the horizon at eye-level at 35,000 feet out both port/starboard windows proves the Earth is flat. If the Earth were a ball, no matter how big, the horizon would stay exactly where it was and you would have to look DOWN further and further to see the horizon at all. Looking straight out the window at 35,000 feet you should see nothing but "outer-space" from the port and starboard windows, as the Earth/horizon are supposed to be BELOW you. If they are visible at eye level outside both side windows, it’s because the Earth is flat!
Since this image is visible above where the object is, it is called a superior mirage. Because cooler air has no physical reason to rise, a temperature inversion is a stable situation, with little convection as with the condition that produces an inferior mirage. Therefore, superior mirages can be very steady, much steadier than inferior mirages. Furthermore, since the refraction acts almost continually rather than at one point, superior mirages normally are erect rather than inverted. If one gains a little altitude, one can get out of the inversion layer, and thus avoid seeing a superior mirage. In my earlier article, I pointed out that this is what Alfred Russell Wallace did when he repeated the Bedford level experiment. Russell did not see the distant object that was his target, which is consistent with a spherical earth. Russell correctly accounted for this effect, but Rowbotham did not.
From the second equation above, the index of refraction at one atmosphere of pressure and a temperature of 310 K (50 degrees F) is 1.000284, while the index of refraction at one atmosphere of pressure and a temperature of 320 K (68 degrees F) is 1.000275. These values yield a critical angle of 89.76 degrees. Hence, when air attempts to pass from 310 K to 320 K air at one atmosphere of pressure, the light will be totally internally reflected if the angle of incidence is greater than 89.76 degrees, or less than about a quarter of a degree from grazing incidence. If the temperature difference is greater, the critical angle will be less; hence the angle from grazing incidence will be greater.
61) If the Earth were actually a big ball 25,000 miles in circumference, the horizon would be noticeably curved even at sea-level, and everything on or approaching the horizon would appear to tilt backwards slightly from your perspective. Distant buildings along the horizon would all look like leaning towers of Piza falling away from the observer. A hot-air balloon taking off then drifting steadily away from you, on a ball-Earth would slowly and constantly appear to lean back more and more the farther away it flew, the bottom of the basket coming gradually into view as the top of the balloon disappears from sight. In reality, however, buildings, balloons, trees, people, anything and everything at right angles to the ground/horizon remains so regardless the distance or height of the observer.
26.) If the Earth were a globe, it would, if we take Valentia to be the place of departure, curvate downwards, in the 1665 miles across the Atlantic to Newfoundland, according to the astronomers' own tables, more than three hundred miles; but, as the surface of the Atlantic does not do so – the fact of its levelness having been clearly demonstrated by Telegraph Cable surveyors, – it follows that we have a grand proof that Earth is not a globe.
6.) If we stand on the sands of the sea-shore and watch a ship approach us, we shall find that she will apparently "rise" – to the extent, of her own height, nothing more. If we stand upon an eminence, the same law operates still; and it is but the law of perspective, which causes objects, as they approach us, to appear to increase in size until we see them, close to us, the size they are in fact. That there is no other "rise" than the one spoken of is plain from the fact that, no matter how high we ascend above the level of the sea, the horizon rises on and still on as we rise, so that it is always on a level with the eye, though it be two-hundred miles away, as seen by Mr. J. Glaisher, of England, from Mr. Coxwell's balloon. So that a ship five miles away may be imagined to be "coming up" the imaginary downward curve of the Earth's surface, but if we merely ascend a hill such as Federal Hill, Baltimore, we may see twenty-!five miles away, on a level with the eye – that is, twenty miles level distance beyond the ship that we vainly imagined to be " rounding the curve," and "coming up!" This is a plain proof that the Earth is not a globe.
4) If Earth were a ball 25,000 miles in circumference as NASA and modern astronomy claim, spherical trigonometry dictates the surface of all standing water must curve downward an easily measurable 8 inches per mile multiplied by the square of the distance. This means along a 6 mile channel of standing water, the Earth would dip 6 feet on either end from the central peak. Every time such experiments have been conducted, however, standing water has proven to be perfectly level.
172) If you pick any cloud in the sky and watch for several minutes, two things will happen: the clouds will move and they will morph gradually changing shape. In official NASA footage of the spinning ball Earth, such as the “Galileo” time-lapse video however, clouds are constantly shown for 24+ hours at a time and not moving or morphing whatsoever! This is completely impossible, further proof that NASA produces fake CGI videos, and further evidence that Earth is not a spinning ball.
78) From Anchorage, Alaska at an elevation of 102 feet, on clear days Mount Foraker can be seen with the naked eye 120 miles away. If Earth were a ball 25,000 miles in circumference, Mount Foraker’s 17,400 summit should be leaning back away from the observer covered by 7,719 feet of curved Earth. In reality, however, the entire mountain can be quite easily seen standing straight from base to summit.