Manectric is the sad little cartoon man who has his own personal thundercloud, following him around wherever he goes. This electric dog gets its power from gathering static electricity in the atmosphere, which, according to the pokédex, causes thunderclouds to form above his head. Let’s check how this adds up.
So first of all, Manectric charges up by “collecting electricity in the atmosphere” with its mane. Strictly speaking, he’s collecting electrons, not electricity. This is the same effect as when you rub a balloon on your hair and it starts standing up. Or when you slide across the carpet in your socks, only to receive a nasty shock from the doorknob. In both cases, it involves capture of electrons. Using the previous examples, your hair steals electrons from the balloon, or your feet from the floor. The surplus of electrons causes the repelling force in your hair, or the small current jumping from your hand to the doorknob.
So Manectric’s mane steals electrons from the atmosphere: the sky is his balloon. The fact that it’s constantly gathering electricity implies that the electrons don’t stay in its mane for long, but are quickly absorbed and used in other parts of Manectric’s body and used for electrical power in attacks. But what does that have to do with thunderclouds?
To have a thundercloud you first obviously need a cloud. Clouds are collections of water, which I’m sure you’re more than familiar with based on your numerous experiences learning about the water cycle. It turns into a thundercloud when, due to the way the cloud is formed, most of the electrons hang out near a certain part of the cloud (typically the bottom). This causes a negative charge at the bottom of the cloud, and a positive charge near the top, building essentially a giant capacitor in the sky.
Then the cloud simply needs to find a nice path to the ground to discharge all of this negative charge. What’s a great place for negatively-charged electrons to go to when they’re kicked out of the cloud? How about Manectric’s mane, which excellently attracts electrons out of the atmosphere all the time.
We still don’t have an explanation for how Manectric forms clouds, but if it’s mane was powerful enough it could certainly turn any normal cloud into a thundercloud. I’d say that’s pretty close. Anywhere Manectric goes, unless the sky is perfectly clear, thunderclouds are nearby.
Manectric’s mane collects electrons in the atmosphere. Because of this, it will attract electrons in normal clouds, turning any cloud into a thundercloud and creating lightning storms wherever it goes.
Taurus: The uncle that’s stuck to the banquet table
Gemini: The “ look how big you’ve gotten !” Auntie
Cancer: The wedding planner
Leo: The hot groomsmen
Virgo: Bride (zilla)
Libra: The cute flower girl
Scorpio: Partying it up
Sagittarius: The crazy little kid running wild stealing balloons
Capricorn: That guest whose a food critique and keeps sending it back
Aquarius: Groom who seems calm but is freaking out
Pisces: The hilarious mc
Here’s a question I never thought I’d be asked: What’s the maximum density allowed to kidnap a child? Drifloon is one of those infamous pokédex entries: it is a balloon that steals children. But, as always, we’re here to ask how.
Balloons are fairly simple in how they work: the air inside of them (typically helium) is less dense than the air in our atmosphere (a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, and lots more). The difference in density creates a buoyant force – making the balloon float.
Specifically, the buoyant force needs to overcome the force of gravity, which of course is keeping the kidnapping victim attached the Earth. It’s reasonable to assume that Drifloon has control over the gas inside of it, to make itself lighter or heavier as needed to float around.
So let’s start slow, and figure out how much force Drifloon needs to carry away a child. First, we have Drifloon’s own mass (1.2 kg), which I assume to measured from an “empty” Drifloon: that is, 1.2 kg is the mass of it’s strings, it’s elastic balloon (or I guess that’s it’s skin…), any organs, the dollop of whip cream on top, and so on, but not including the mass of any air inside of it.
Then, the mass of a child: Completely arbitrarily, I chose 20 kg for the mass of a child (about 45 lbs). So, Drifloon needs to be able to lift a total of 21.2 kg or a buoyant force of 207.76 Newtons (that is with Earth’s gravity, although check out my post on that to see why this may be an overestimate).
The next step is to find Drifloon’s volume! I’m estimating the balloon part to be a sphere with radius of 0.1 meters, for a total volume of 4.19×10-3 m^3. That’s a pretty small volume, but we can use that in Archimedes Principle to find the density of Drifloon’s balloon. This is where we run into problems. The buoyant force of an object is equal to the weight of the fluid (air in this case) that is displaces. Air has a density of 1.2754 kg/m^3, meaning that even if Drifloon was a complete vacuum, it would only be able to lift 5grams (not kilograms) of mass. That is nowhere near the 21.2 kg it would need for a child. In fact, with this number, Drifloon by itself shouldn’t even be able to float at all.
What does this mean? Well, it means that Drifloon doesn’t float like a balloon at all. It has to fly or levitate, perhaps using some sort of magnetic field or the like.
Because Drifloon is so small, it should only be able to lift 5 grams of mass. Drifloon itself reportedly weighs 1.2 kg, meaning it is physically impossible that Drifloon floats at all. This means that Drifloon does not float like a balloon: rather it flies or levitates.