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August 3rd, 2010 The Quantum Physics in Back to the Future

Talking with friends after watching the final movie in the Back to the Future trilogy, I realized.  On the back of the time traveling Delorian, were two black baffles, as shown here:

The baffles largely serve no purpose in the first movie (save for cooling purposes, which they are ill-equipped for). there were no thrusters, just the power of the car’s engine to propel it forward.  They added thrusters in the second movie (which appear at the end of the first).  Why, then would they be there from the start?

Why, because of quantum physics, of course!  Perhaps without the baffles, the space time continuum would not deem the craft worthy of time travel; Perhaps it deems the ever present “Rule of Cool” a more worthy of consideration then we frequently do.  Could it be, the reason our scientists and mathematicians can’t figure out quantum physics is they lack the prerequisite style necessary to unlock the secrets of the universe?

Sounds like we could use a lesson from the champion in this field:  Doctor Emmett Lathrop Brown, Ph.D.

2 Comments Written by at 2:52 pm
  1. Skye
    August 4th, 2010 9:23 pm

    Maybe the baffles were there to present an exhaust for something that was momentary, and closeable shortly afterwards. They seem to have open/closeable doors on them, so perhaps by closing them they do something with airflow and later when he replaces the system with Mr. Fusion, they make some kind of natural output location for the thrusters. Or, maybe they weren't thrusters at all, as there weren't any other cars that had them, and were still actually some kind of exhaust system that was now radiating visibly as compared to before. As to -what- it would be exhausting/radiating without melting what appears to be sheet metal, I'm not really sure

    • August 5th, 2010 12:49 pm

      It was mentioned somewhere I can no longer locate that the baffles were originally put in place as cooling for the nuclear reactor onboard version 1.    The thing is, the baffles have directors in them to direct the flow- the sort of thing you'd expect to find in thrusters!  They don't look like they'd actually be able to close completely.

      If their original purpose was to cool the reactor, why wouldn't they use a more efficient module to do so?

      It had to be rule of cool.

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