Radiesthesia (or dowsing, devining) describes the capability of sensing radiance, in this case underground water. This biological hypersensitivity is expressed by means of a rod or a pendulum. A rod is not a magic wand, however, it merely indicates the dowsers reaction to a geophysical cause.

The mode of operation of the rod has to be interpreted correcty, whereas the experience of the dowser is essential. Thus its reaction can not only indicate the exact location (up to 10cm) of the aquifier, but also the width, depth, direction, yield and quality of the water.

Naturally, this ancient art of dowsing is scientifically highly controversial. However, the scientifc lack of understanding cannot be the argument for ignoring this very promising approach of water detection. Because the success speaks for itself. Hans Schröter is actually able to locate ground water with a probability of almost 100%!

For a rough localization of water it is essential to know the specific hydrogeological conditions of a region. Rock formation, surface water, topography and different forms of vegetation can provide good clues which can subsequently be analyzed more thoroughly on spot. The professional and experienced use of the rod can then pinpoint the exact location.

Under the use of the unconventional method of dowsing, combined with geophysics, numerous GTZ- projects for drinking water supply were conducted in the whole world. They were extremely successful and remarkably efficient in terms of money and time. The press release of the impressive success of the Sri Lanka project (beginning of the 80s) due to the dowsing method was followed by what would today be called shitstorm. Until today, representatives of the classical sciences of geology, hydrology and geophysics a method that cannot be explained scientifically.

The scientific dilemma is compehensible, and the discussion dowsing vs science will not be followed at this stage. It just has to mentioned that we cannot afford to do without modern technology. However, this knowledge can be complemented by dowsing as an efficient and cost saving alternative. An unbiased and rational handling with this controversial phenomenon helps to solve the problem of scarcity of drinking water.

Hans Schröters former employer also adopted this pragmatic view, after the exceptional success of this controversial method could not go unrecognized anymore.

In the initial state of the project, the borehole localization was determined by geological and geoelectrical methods (such as measuring electrical resistivity in the soil). However, after about a year into the project (after which 100 wells sites had been located and confirmed), the water devining method alone was used for well site location, which resulted in a tremendous time and cost efficiency.

The dowsing rod was somewhat implemented by chance and for pragmatic reasons into the Sri Lanka project. The objective was not to evaluate the method of dowsing, but to find drinking water. However, subsequently to the project, some comparitive field studies were conducted, in which both methods – geophysics and dowsing - of detecting ground water were used. The result was always the same – conventional prospection delivered a success rate of about 30%, whereas the dowsing technique had one over 90%.

A German physics professor, Hans-Dieter Betz, has done some substantial research and observation in the field of dowsing. Because of the pronounced interest of the scientific community and the public, he was assigned to conduct an extensive Munich research project financed by the German Ministry of Research (the so-called double-blind Munich barn experiment) with the question – are there any, bodily sensed human reactions to location, which are not explicable by the nomal sensoric organs? The results show with very high statistically founded certainty that such (non random) reactions exist. Thus the existence of the dowsing phenomenon was proved, albeit not the cause.

With his dowsing abilities, Hans Schröter delivered a highly significant result and was evaluated to be the most successful dowser in this experimental group of 50 persons.

However the experiment also showed that water is not the primary trigger, the cause of the reaction. It rather seems to be secondary phenomena which either occur at the same time as the existence of water or which are caused by water such as underground anomalities like fracture zones.