Levitating Frogs and Fake Astronauts

I had nothing planned for this week, but I came across two awful ISS debunking video that were so bad, I had to write about it!

Two videos, one from CharlesFockaert and one from Wisdom Afoolweakness, discuss diamagnetism and the levitating frog experiment. They also conducted some “research” on diamagnetism and concluded the following:

If we can use magnetism on frogs on Earth, then we can use it on astronauts on the ISS, right?

Therefore the astronauts are not in space, but are just being levitated by a giant magnet!


… Thank goodness I study magnetism at school!

First things first, the levitating frog

The frog experiment in question is below, created by the University of Nottingham and Nijmegen:

Disclaimer: The animals were not harmed in the process.

The frog was put in a bitter solenoid, which instead of coils of wire the solenoid is made of copper plates, to create a very strong field.

The frog can be assumed to be a diamagnetic, due to the high water content in it (water is a diamagnetic), a type of magnetism that enables levitation in the first place. In this experiment, the frog required field of 16 Tesla.

To put 16 T into context, Earth’s magnetic field at the surface is roughly at most 0.000065 Tesla.

So how big a field would the ISS need?

Well the mean weight of a common frog is 0.222687N (g = 9.81), and requires a 16 T field to produce a force greater than the gravitational force acting on the frog.

For the 3 people currently in space, the total gravitational force the magnetic field needs to overcome would be roughly 1770N (assuming average mass = 60kg). That’s just under 8’000 x greater than the force on the frog!

The amount of field needed is unknown, but all I can tell you that the strongest continuous field created by a bitter electromagnet (45 Tesla) would probably still not be enough.

Forget about our lack of magnets, what about the ISS itself?

Unfortunately, the space deniers also forgot one crucial fact: The ISS is made up of metal.

You know, metal that tends to experience a MuCh mUcH muCH MUch greater force due to a magnetic field than any human?

The ISS is made of a lot of aluminium, a paramagnetic material which experiences an attractive force when put in a magnetic field. Attractive, not repulsive like a diamagnetic object.

So what would happen if the ISS and astronauts experienced a high enough Tesla field? Bear in mind, the aluminium will experience an attractive force, the humans will experience a repulsive force.

I’ll let flex man explain:


That’s all today, have fun!


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