Other methods to raise money

Discuss funding sources for polywell research, including the non-profit EMC2 Fusion Development Corporation, as well as any other relevant research efforts.

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choff
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Saving time and money on phase 2

Post by choff »

Assuming the Santa Fe team gets positive results and a thumbs up from the peer review, I have a dumb question. A net gain experimental reactor would need an approximately 30 foot diameter high vacuum chamber. Is it possible some such chamber already exists somewere in the western hemisphere, maybe NASA uses one to test components in a simulated space enviorment, possibly with a super cooling system already in place. With a little bit of luck phase 2 could then be completed ahead of schedule for even less cost, since the only major component then left is the magrid.
CHoff

scareduck
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Post by scareduck »

The vacuum chamber would be one of many elements that would have to be developed... high-voltage, high-reliability standoffs, high-speed gas injection systems... just as MSimon, who's been developing a cut sheet for a hypothetical commercial Polywell. A lot of the stuff just doesn't exist yet.

MSimon
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Re: Saving time and money on phase 2

Post by MSimon »

choff wrote:Assuming the Santa Fe team gets positive results and a thumbs up from the peer review, I have a dumb question. A net gain experimental reactor would need an approximately 30 foot diameter high vacuum chamber. Is it possible some such chamber already exists somewere in the western hemisphere, maybe NASA uses one to test components in a simulated space enviorment, possibly with a super cooling system already in place. With a little bit of luck phase 2 could then be completed ahead of schedule for even less cost, since the only major component then left is the magrid.
For a test reactor with no conversion or thermal conversion, it would only take a sphere about 10 to 15 ft across.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

choff
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Post by choff »

10 to 15 feet would probably be easier to find if it exists. I remember reading a few years back about an xray laser experiment that had huge capacitor banks. There might be mothballed equipment out there from old research going back decades. If off the self tech can be adapted to new uses it makes the original project managers look good. You aren't necessarily trying to make a commercial reactor right off the bat phase 2, just a breakeven attempt.

P.S.

Isochroma, the grow op idea is bad, we have lots of grow ops where I live, they contribute to lead poisoning in a big way.
CHoff

Zixinus
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Post by Zixinus »

In 1908 the consensus was our Galaxy comprised the entire universe. And they thought they had nearly nailed down all the laws of physics.
So? Did they have access to data and inforamation at the time that said otherwise?

Instead of looking at an example about when they were wrong, look at WHY they were wrong. Therein lies much, much difference.
"We should be open minded, but not so open minded that our brain falls out."
- Richard Dawkins

Helius
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Post by Helius »

Zixinus wrote:
In 1908 the consensus was our Galaxy comprised the entire universe. And they thought they had nearly nailed down all the laws of physics.
So? Did they have access to data and inforamation at the time that said otherwise?

Instead of looking at an example about when they were wrong, look at WHY they were wrong. Therein lies much, much difference.
They weren't right or wrong. They were just satisfied. This is just as we were a decade ago with respect to all being right with Cosmology: We had the big bang, and we had no measure that caused us to suppose the creation of dark matter which now is supposed to comprise what, 94% of all matter... Cosmology is in crisis now, it wasn't a decade ago.

Physics wasn't in crisis from the time of Newton until prior to Quantum mechanics. In 1875 a 17 year old Max Planck entered the University of Munich. He was told he should *not* pursue a career in Physics because
"All the important discoveries in Physics have been made". Apparently at that time, Physics was not in crisis; They were just satisfied.

I don't think we're more correct now... do you? We may be able to make better predictions of our own observations, but "correct" is the wrong word. It implies a metric upon ultimate reality, and this can't be. Measurement can only be on our own collective observations, not ultimate reality.

drmike
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Post by drmike »

For every question we answer we raise 10 more questions. If the suite of follow on questions all confirm the original theory, things are "satisfactory". It's when you ask questions that don't satisfy the original theory that you get a "crisis". But let's face it, it is the crisis we hope for! Life is boring if you know what will happen every time.

Chaos theory predicts you can't predict anything under conditions of too many variables. This is good! It means we have to go measure stuff and look at things up close. That's why we need to travel around the universe, to go look at all of it up close. And every where we go we will learn something new.

That process will never end. Which is really cool when you think about it.

Zixinus
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Post by Zixinus »

I don't think we're more correct now... do you? We may be able to make better predictions of our own observations, but "correct" is the wrong word. It implies a metric upon ultimate reality, and this can't be. Measurement can only be on our own collective observations, not ultimate reality.
Which has to do with my point, how? People always have thought that they knew everything, I see no reason why scientists couldn't have somehow immune to this.

Observations is what makes new theories, but that doesn't mean that our corrent theories are wrong. It means that we have something new to learn and most likely we will always have something new to learn.

In general, we can't say that we know everything. On specific subjects however, we can say that in a certain framework, we do know everything and we can accurately predict what will happen and how it works unless an unknown, less-predictable variable is entered.

So some scientists were "satisfied". Some scientists even thought that they knew everything. Here is a secret: even people with a title of Doctor or similiar can say stupid things. Why? Because scientists are people and are as suspicibable to certain trends and ideas of the world like any other person.

This is pretty much what I am talking about: http://chem.tufts.edu/AnswersInScience/ ... fWrong.htm
"We should be open minded, but not so open minded that our brain falls out."
- Richard Dawkins

MSimon
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Re: Saving time and money on phase 2

Post by MSimon »

choff wrote:Assuming the Santa Fe team gets positive results and a thumbs up from the peer review, I have a dumb question. A net gain experimental reactor would need an approximately 30 foot diameter high vacuum chamber. Is it possible some such chamber already exists somewere in the western hemisphere, maybe NASA uses one to test components in a simulated space enviorment, possibly with a super cooling system already in place. With a little bit of luck phase 2 could then be completed ahead of schedule for even less cost, since the only major component then left is the magrid.
Actually if there was no desire to extract power electrostatically a chamber about 8 to 10 ft across should do. It would have to have a liquid jacket for cooling though if operations of more than seconds are desired.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

ursid
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Lottery to pay winner's electric bill for life

Post by ursid »

I think you could get a considerable amount of funding, perhaps the entire $200M or more for a maximum exposure of $420,000 plus administrative expenses. It could be that the entire enterprise could pay for itself, whether or not Polywell research ever leads to cheap fusion-supplied power.

Offer to pay someone's domestic electric bills for life. Sell tickets for a buck. If players must be 18 or older, the chances are good that they'll only need electricity for no more than 70 additional years. Assume that high consumption and/or inflation runs up the average individual monthly bill to $500. That is still only $420,000. Invest that amount in interest bearing accounts and the "electricity for life" fund will be fully-stocked, even in the presence of reasonable inflation or the chance that someone with a mansion wins the prize (although you could say "electricity for life, or $500/mo., whichever is lesser"). Only 420,000 tickets need be sold to cover that. Be wildly generous and assume that promotion and administration cost an additional $1M. You'll then need only $1.5M, probably no more than $2M for all the overhead including the prize. (Taxation may throw a wrench into the works, but a $500/mo. budget would cover a fair amount of taxation and a pretty large electricity bill -- including the normal utility taxes also.)

So, you would need to sell 2M tickets to break-even. How many more could you sell, based on widespread publicity for the lottery and its promise of household electricity bills free for life? Ten million, fifty million, 100 million or more?

The odds of winning the California Lottery are 1 in 18 million (for super lotto jackpot) or 1 in 15 million (for regular lottery). Also, nobody is guaranteed to win: lottery jackpots frequently roll-over because nobody picks the winning numbers. In contrast, the "electricity for life" lotto could have the same odds but a guaranteed winner, if ticket sales were capped at 18M or 15M, respectively. That would still net $12-15M for Polywell research. If you ran one lottery a month for a year, that would net up to $180M for Polywell research.

There are many other ways that such a game could be structured, but my point is that the web makes it possible to reach everywhere, maximizing your national market, while minimizing costs of administration and publicity. People are willing to spend a dollar or two (and some, ten, twenty, or more) to be in the running for a significant prize.

The best part is what happens if the scaled-up Polywell is successful, and if fuels such as boron-proton prove practical: energy becomes plentiful and much cheaper FOR EVERYONE in short order. So even the lottery's "losers" would win big in that scenario (not to mention the thousands of lives and hundreds of billions of tax dollars saved because we won't have to go to war for energy again).

Other than various state laws, for which the lottery organizer might get waivers, I can't see any reason why a nonprofit foundation couldn't make this funding model work to generate a significant amount of cash -- and perhaps all that may be needed, to make polywell-based "hot fusion" a practical reality. The worst case on one end would be that there wouldn't be enough sales of lottery tickets to cover prize and administration costs, much less cover Polywell research to any significant degree. The worst case on the other end would be that Polywell research does not yield practical, cheap fusion power, but does yield a lot of data and insights about the pros and cons of the fusor approach. The upside is spectacular from any angle, especially if the results of the research could be released into the public domain to the extent that there is massive public funding from the lottery mechanism.

If the results from WB-7 confirm that earlier claimed results were not in error and that Polywell and claimed progress with it were not hoaxes, then I think people who want cheap fusion power ought to jump on the lottery funding concept immediately, and not wait for military or other government interests, much less proprietary private sector interests, to swoop in with strings-attached funding.

jormungandr
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Post by jormungandr »

Another way to gather funds would be to turn EMC2 semi-public. Leave Nebel and company with all the voting stock and just sell nonvoting stock. Or is that allowed? If it is I'd buy stock! I'd buy lots of it :)

You could 'prolly get the Chinese to foot the bill. Though there is an extremely high risk they'd steal the designs. Don't want to get involved with the EU -- the tokamak people would bury you. Most African countries would have trouble coughing up the money. Maybe Bill Gates? Bringing the world endless energy would *almost* atone for the sin that is Windows.

scareduck
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Post by scareduck »

Zixinus wrote:200 mil of pure R&D is not exactly something you can find easily. Private corporations are interested in making money, not R&D.
If you had $200M you could spare right now would you fund it? If it were the sum of your assets? If it were half?

As this discussion has gone on, the Feds are in the process of taking over Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, and will probably end up pumping billions into the pockets of the stupid organizations who bought securitized liar loans. (Both relaxed their loan standards in 2006 in a foolish attempt to prop up the real estate market.) There will be a day of reckoning, and when that happens, a lot of money will disappear from the world, either by hook (transfer payments from taxpayers to securitized bondholders) or by crook (inflation to make the problem appear to go away). Either way, both private and federal money is about to get a lot harder to acquire.

Roger
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Re: Saving time and money on phase 2

Post by Roger »

MSimon wrote:
For a test reactor with no conversion or thermal conversion, it would only take a sphere about 10 to 15 ft across.
Yeah, really..... we're talking about 2 meter coils for DD, tops, no?

Even 3 meter coils for PB-11 wouldn't need a 30 ft chamber.. no ?
I like the p-B11 resonance peak at 50 KV acceleration. In2 years we'll know.

MSimon
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Re: Saving time and money on phase 2

Post by MSimon »

Roger wrote:
MSimon wrote:
For a test reactor with no conversion or thermal conversion, it would only take a sphere about 10 to 15 ft across.
Yeah, really..... we're talking about 2 meter coils for DD, tops, no?

Even 3 meter coils for PB-11 wouldn't need a 30 ft chamber.. no ?
A lot will depend on the field gradient possible for direct conversion. For a test machine with no conversion a 15ft to 25 ft chamber would probably do the job.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

scareduck wrote:
Zixinus wrote:200 mil of pure R&D is not exactly something you can find easily. Private corporations are interested in making money, not R&D.
If you had $200M you could spare right now would you fund it? If it were the sum of your assets? If it were half?

As this discussion has gone on, the Feds are in the process of taking over Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, and will probably end up pumping billions into the pockets of the stupid organizations who bought securitized liar loans. (Both relaxed their loan standards in 2006 in a foolish attempt to prop up the real estate market.) There will be a day of reckoning, and when that happens, a lot of money will disappear from the world, either by hook (transfer payments from taxpayers to securitized bondholders) or by crook (inflation to make the problem appear to go away). Either way, both private and federal money is about to get a lot harder to acquire.
When the real estate trusts melted down we lost 1/2 trillion in a year in a smaller economy.

The current mess is a hiccup.

What is the meaning of it? Not enough productive investment opportunities.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

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