Al Gore

Consider specific people in the fusion research community, business, or politics who should be made aware of polywell research, and how we might reach them.

Moderators: tonybarry, MSimon

tonybarry
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Postby tonybarry » Thu Jul 12, 2007 12:56 pm

Joe, I am an Australian and probably do not cut much ice in the States. But I'm happy to help where I can, and if you need something proofread I am sure I can contribute. I tend to focus on typos mainly, and leave the thrust to the original writer.
I believe that fusion has a real possibility to take off in the minds of the people first, and then in the political arena.
And I also believe that we must think positive, despite previous experience with the political arena. Realism should focus us onto the best way forward rather than "it cannot be done". Cynicism is our real enemy.
Pardon the sermon.
Regards
Tony Barry

Zixinus
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Postby Zixinus » Thu Jul 12, 2007 1:49 pm

I believe that fusion has a real possibility to take off in the minds of the people first, and then in the political arena.
And I also believe that we must think positive, despite previous experience with the political arena. Realism should focus us onto the best way forward rather than "it cannot be done". Cynicism is our real enemy.
Pardon the sermon.


I have a feeling that some of that is addressed towards me. Well, yeah, I should try to be more positive. :lol:

Well, yeah, I don't like politicians much, nor politics for that matter. I'm not sure that Polywell has the best chances in politics, but if someone has the guts and nerve to do it..."God speed"!

Now, lets see, realistic possibilities.

Well, I think a campaign across the internet might be a good start. We need to raise awareness, on as many forums possible. Of course, without spamming, and we should try to answer any criticism. That's where we can wash the snake-oil smell away. Instead of waiting for a sceptic to come, we ask them and document the debate.

Next thing. Mr.Simon (or Doctor Simon?) gave interest in making a prototype Polywell reactor. That is going to need money, and I don't know if Mr.Simom has that. A donation drive, complete with regularly updated blog might spark great interest. People would see the birth of sunfire all across the world, with regular updates.

And that might the most worthy goal: to build a prototype reactor and prove that Polywell concept works. EMC2 is silent as a grave right now, so I don't think we can expect much help from them, but if we can get a contact with them that would be nice.

Really, I image a site "rebirthofprometheus.org", linking us to this forum, with a regular blog of Mr.Simon and crew about getting funding, getting parts, asking for help with certain components, etc, hosting various science papers and "dummies guide to nuclear fusion" pages. And t-shirts. Don't forget the t-shirts. :D

Once we have a reactor running, the rest solves itself.

Schneibster
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Postby Schneibster » Sun Jul 15, 2007 4:46 am

Mmmm. Interesting discussion, but I think this is the wrong forum for it- and it's sure the wrong thread! I'll be happy to have that conversation with you in the right place, Zix.

Thanks for the offer, Joe, tony. I have something on the fire- I'll haul it out for everyone to critique when it's a little more polished.

MSimon
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The Parade

Postby MSimon » Mon Jul 16, 2007 10:09 pm

The job of a politician is to find a parade and get in front of it.

No parade. No politician.

Persuade the people. The politicians will follow.

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The Problem With Fission

Postby MSimon » Mon Jul 16, 2007 10:21 pm

The problem with fission is plutonium.

If we start building a lot of nukes every one will want one.

Not such a good idea. IMO.

BTW I've had Naval Nuke quals. Passed with flying colors. So I'm not unmindful of the various suggestions for reducing the production of plutonium. I'm not sold.

Zixinus
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Postby Zixinus » Tue Jul 17, 2007 9:53 am

The problem with fission is plutonium.

If we start building a lot of nukes every one will want one.


That's what fast breeders would like to solve.

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Jul 17, 2007 7:40 pm

Zixinus wrote:
The problem with fission is plutonium.

If we start building a lot of nukes every one will want one.


That's what fast breeders would like to solve.


Well sure. Except there will be a lot of plutonium floating around in such a regime. What if some of it get "lost".

As I said. I've heard the arguments. I understand the technology. I'm not convinced.

Zixinus
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Postby Zixinus » Wed Jul 18, 2007 11:01 am

Well sure. Except there will be a lot of plutonium floating around in such a regime. What if some of it get "lost".


You need a very special type of incompetence to lose a 40 ton, radioactive case that always is escorted by police. Even if a gang of terrorist overwhelm the escort, they would quickly lose the element of surprise and commandos would reign on the gang's ass before they can even hope to get away.

And even if they miraculously got away, the best they can do with the power plant-grade plutonium in question is to put them in dirty bombs. You'd get farther with nerve gas or even biological weapons. You know full well, that that the fuel used in power plants cannot be turned into a bomb without extensive reprocessing that would require infrastructure of a nation.

Nanos
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Postby Nanos » Wed Jul 18, 2007 12:37 pm

In the UK we have 'lost' plenty of the stuff over the years, and at times it is transported without any security at all.

Having spoken with people who have worked in nuke plants, I was shocked to hear when they talked about casually dropping off contaninated stuff to home to burn in their local fire places, rather than taking it all the way to the correct disposal site for hazardous waste.

Not to mention all the stuff we have given away, or sold to other countries without telling the rest of the world about it (And the US has done the same too.) causing all manner of trouble over the years.

Zixinus
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Postby Zixinus » Thu Jul 19, 2007 10:50 pm

In the UK we have 'lost' plenty of the stuff over the years, and at times it is transported without any security at all.


Is this a fact or just legend? If someone "lost" a 40 ton container of highly valuable nuclear fuel, that would go on the international news.

Having spoken with people who have worked in nuke plants, I was shocked to hear when they talked about casually dropping off contaninated stuff to home to burn in their local fire places, rather than taking it all the way to the correct disposal site for hazardous waste.


Depends on what kind of waste. Some stuff are irradiated but do not become radioactive (cloths for example) but still handled as nuclear waste due to paranoia and an ignorant politician wanting to be "extra-sure".

Not to mention all the stuff we have given away, or sold to other countries without telling the rest of the world about it (And the US has done the same too.) causing all manner of trouble over the years.


Do you have a source for this? And what "stuff" are we talking about?

Nanos
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Postby Nanos » Fri Jul 20, 2007 7:21 am

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4272691.stm

> The UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) confirmed 29.6kg
> of plutonium - enough to make seven nuclear bombs
> was "unaccounted for" in auditing records.
>
> The figures also showed that 16.4kg of naturally-depleted
> uranium was also unaccounted for.

I'm not aware of any containers going missing, though we did manage to lose an entire reactor, which now lays buried and somewhat forgotten about..

This waste would be desks, chairs, anything wooden and burnable in a domestic fireplace, low level stuff, but still, it wasn't supposed to be dropped off at peoples homes.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/1859560.stm

> International researchers have warned that the world may be
> awash in unaccounted weapons-grade uranium and plutonium
> after completing a latest database of lost and stolen nuclear material.

http://www.economist.com/world/internat ... id=8633393

> a database maintained by the International Atomic Energy Agency
> (IAEA), the United Nations nuclear guardian, has clocked 16
> confirmed cases worldwide since 1993 where highly-enriched
> uranium or plutonium (both, in the right form, can be used as
> the fissile core of a nuclear weapon) has been lost, stolen or
> seized from would-be traffickers


http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/n ... 789832.stm

> The UK supplied Israel with quantities of plutonium while
> Harold Wilson was prime minister
> They show Foreign Minister Kim Howells misled the IAEA
> and that Britain made not one, but hundreds of secret
> shipments of nuclear materials to Israel.


http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/ ... 77,00.html

> Britain secretly supplied the 20 tons of heavy water to Israel nearly
> half a century ago which enabled it to make nuclear weapons
> according to Whitehall documents which have been discovered
> at the Public Records Office.

I spent 2 years myself working at that place, so I'm a little more up to date on what shannaigans go on world wide, now unclassified documents show for example that the US supplied to Venezuela via the UK, with nuclear material. Not sure of the exact reference there, but a quick look on their site gives some information;

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/cata ... 718269&j=1

> Exchange of Notes concerning the Safeguards and Assurances
> relating to a Transfer of Nuclear Material from the
> United Kingdom to Venezuela

Zixinus
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Postby Zixinus » Fri Jul 20, 2007 8:13 pm

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4272691.stm

> The UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) confirmed 29.6kg
> of plutonium - enough to make seven nuclear bombs
> was "unaccounted for" in auditing records.
>
> The figures also showed that 16.4kg of naturally-depleted
> uranium was also unaccounted for.


I thought you were better then this.

Full story:
Operator, the British Nuclear Group (BNG), said it was a discrepancy between physical and book inventories.

UKAEA said there was no reason to think there was any "real loss" of plutonium.


I'm not aware of any containers going missing, though we did manage to lose an entire reactor, which now lays buried and somewhat forgotten about..


And this reactor is...where?

This waste would be desks, chairs, anything wooden and burnable in a domestic fireplace, low level stuff, but still, it wasn't supposed to be dropped off at peoples homes.


Nanos, unless it was subjected to neutron irradiation, these stuff would be just as dangerous and radioactive as what would you be able to buy in a shop.

And I highly doubt that desks, chairs and such would be found be subjected to neutron radiation.

You do understand radiation do you?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/1859560.stm

> International researchers have warned that the world may be
> awash in unaccounted weapons-grade uranium and plutonium
> after completing a latest database of lost and stolen nuclear material.


Again, the full story is a bit different. You see, you have to go overseas to get the kind of incompetence in question.

According to the report, about 40 kilograms of weapons-usable uranium and plutonium have been stolen from poorly protected nuclear facilities in the former Soviet Union during the last decade.

It said that while most of that material had been later retrieved, two kilograms of highly enriched uranium from a reactor in Georgia was still missing.


You can't do much with two kilograms of uranium.

http://www.economist.com/world/international/displaystory.cfm?story_id=8633393

> a database maintained by the International Atomic Energy Agency
> (IAEA), the United Nations nuclear guardian, has clocked 16
> confirmed cases worldwide since 1993 where highly-enriched
> uranium or plutonium (both, in the right form, can be used as
> the fissile core of a nuclear weapon) has been lost, stolen or
> seized from would-be traffickers


Not full story.

A CHANCE, you might think, for Russia to show the co-operation that its president, Vladimir Putin, regularly promises in clamping down on the global traffic in dangerous nuclear materials. Yet the release last week of new titbits about a Georgian sting operation which reportedly netted just short of 80 grams of highly-enriched weapons-useable uranium, a Russian citizen from Vladikavkaz in North Ossetia (a part of Russia) and several Georgian accomplices—was a “provocation”, thundered Russia's foreign minister.


Again, the incompetence and stupidity of the Russians, that do not apply to the West.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/newsnight/4789832.stm

> The UK supplied Israel with quantities of plutonium while
> Harold Wilson was prime minister
> They show Foreign Minister Kim Howells misled the IAEA
> and that Britain made not one, but hundreds of secret
> shipments of nuclear materials to Israel.


The frick is with this? Britan did not ship nuclear materials. It shipped heavy water (which might be used to produce plutonium, that is true). You can buy that yourself here:
http://www.unitednuclear.com/chem.htm (ctrl-f "deuterium", you get heavy water)
and here:
http://www.wilmad-labglass.com/group/2147 (ctrl-f Deuterium Oxide)

Beyond that, the whole article sounds like a crimi story. And even if these so called "deals" were to happen, then it would be the action of dishonest government, not terrorists.

Israel has certainly the capacity to produce nuclear weapons. Whether it actually will, or whether it had, is a question for an altogether different topic.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,2763,1542077,00.html

> Britain secretly supplied the 20 tons of heavy water to Israel nearly
> half a century ago which enabled it to make nuclear weapons
> according to Whitehall documents which have been discovered
> at the Public Records Office.


First few lines:

Britain secretly supplied the 20 tons of heavy water to Israel nearly half a century ago which enabled it to make nuclear weapons, according to Whitehall documents which have been discovered at the Public Records Office.


Again, this is not the issue of nuclear material being lost. This is the case that Israel brought heavy water.

I spent 2 years myself working at that place, so I'm a little more up to date on what shannaigans go on world wide, now unclassified documents show for example that the US supplied to Venezuela via the UK, with nuclear material. Not sure of the exact reference there, but a quick look on their site gives some information;


Site link doesn't work, and I would have to buy the paper in question. What do you know excatly? What kind of nuclear material are we talking about?

Nanos
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Postby Nanos » Fri Jul 20, 2007 10:15 pm

The later stories hinted that most of it was thought to be stuck in the plumbing, though of course, some of it may have gone walkies, its hard to tell for sure if the paperwork isn't all in place.

I'm trying to remember where this reactor is, a quick google search doesn't bring up anything, but I do remember the information is now declassifed so I can talk about that aspect of it, other than that, I would have to spend a few hours googling to find it, and I'd rather you did that if you really wanted to know where, rather than me waste my time on that, as its not of a great deal of importance in our argument.

All I understand is that waste which should have gone to special landfill did not, and this is an example of breached regulations, who knows what other kind of regulations was breached if this sort of thing went on regularly.

Still, the other stories do show stuff goes missing and ends up in the wrong hands.

The west is no different when it comes to levels of incompetence, we have our 3 mile island, our windscale, they have Chernobyl.

The heavy water was an example of something nuclear related that the UK shipped without telling the US at the time.

I'm sure we are all aware of Isreals nuclear capacity.

Link was only to show the document exists, the only way to view it is in person :-) (though they might have got around to digital online copies by now.)

I don't recal what kind of nuclear material in question, only that UK sailers refused to handle the stuff and it eventually had to make its way there on the deck of a US supertanker.

All manner of rather worrying things go on behind the scenes, that in time we get to hear about, but they do and are happening as we speak, so caution is advised.

MSimon
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Control rods

Postby MSimon » Sat Jul 21, 2007 3:46 am

Zixinus,

I had no idea the Chernobyl rods were tipped with carbon. Not only will this cause a reactivity spike as they are inserted, they also increase the local differential activity causing excess thermal stresses.

Idiots.

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Sat Jul 21, 2007 3:57 am

Zixinus wrote:
Well sure. Except there will be a lot of plutonium floating around in such a regime. What if some of it get "lost".


You need a very special type of incompetence to lose a 40 ton, radioactive case that always is escorted by police. Even if a gang of terrorist overwhelm the escort, they would quickly lose the element of surprise and commandos would reign on the gang's ass before they can even hope to get away.


There is no such thing as fool proof security.

Also note that the high neutron activity only limits the size of the bomb you can make. Plus if I were tolerably smart there are ways around the problem. BTW I'm tolerably smart. Also note that the Los Alamos guys have stated that they could do a few tricks to make reactor grade plutonium suitable for a bomb. So Los Alamos and I think you could use reactor grade Pu to make a bomb.

It wouldn't just be a dirty bomb.

Believe me when I tell you I have studied the issue.

Also note: Once these "burners" proliferate what is to prevent the Russians from building one for Iran? How will 40 ton casks help then?


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