Heat Waves

Hello and welcome back to another week of lying hard (not hardly lying) here at Factually Deficient! This week, I’d like to respond to a question that was asked by in response to this post about fireworks. Touching on the subject of phlogiston that was mentioned in that post, narrativedilettante asked:

How would heat ever travel through the ether?

The question of how heat travels through the ether is one that has been pondered by scientists for decades; and finally, Factually Deficient is here to provide you with a reliable answer on the topic!

As the phrase “heat wave” suggests, heat travels in waves. True heat waves are rare, and are detectable with most scientific equipment available today – ranging from a high-speed modem to a simple magnifying glass.

Like most things, heat itself is made up of small heat particles. These particles are motionless in their default state. However, the accumulation of large numbers of heat particles causes them to start moving to fill up whatever receptacle they are in. When the container has been filled, the heat particles move in concert, in a wave-shaped mass migration, travelling in a straight line until they find a new space big enough to hold them all. It is when one of these waves of heat passes near or through you that most people experience the sensation of warmth.

Because heat particles are so small, these waves are infrequent. Modern science has detected a pattern to them, and we can now state with certainty that in the northern hemisphere, heat waves occur once in ten years and two months, on Thursday afternoons. In the southern hemisphere, they follow the same pattern, but shifted by fifty percent from the northern hemisphere’s pattern.


Disclaimer: Many of the statements in this blog post are untrue. Heat has been known to travel more frequently than ten years and two months.


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