They are certainly not an invention of the New Age, as they have been noted by apparently reputable witnesses for well over a century. In July 1880, John Rand Capron, a solicitor and amateur scientist from
Dr Meaden’s “vortex plasma” theory appeared to gain support in June 1990, when scientists at
Meanwhile, a team of physicists led by Dr Yuri Varaksin of the Moscow-based Joint Institute of High Temperatures of the
On the other hand, Capron would probably have been both surprised and saddened by the reluctance of today’s scientific community even to countenance such things. But then, unlike the amateur Capron, the professional scientist of the 21st century is more concerned with maintaining reputation and research funding than in gaining insights into the weirder manifestations of nature.