Thursday, May 16, 2013

Mixed news

Can we grow a stronger-than-steel 'wonder material' to save the world? [The Verge]

NASA: A Nuclear Reactor To Replace Your Water Heater [link]
The LENR offers a slow-moving neutron to an element—NASA researchers are working with nickel. The nickel absorbs the extra neutron, rendering the nickel unstable. To regain stability, the acquired neutron splits into an electron and a proton. "
" NASA researchers are working on producing the reactions by vibrating lattices of nickel saturated with hydrogen ions at high frequencies. Right now, those vibrations require more initial energy than the reactions produce, the same problem that has stymied efforts to produce fusion reactors. But Bushnell offers this summary of the state of low-energy nuclear reactors:

Something real is happening.

  • The weak interaction theories [including Widom-Larsen] suggest what the physics might be.
  • There are efforts ongoing to explore the validity of the theories.
  • There are continuing Edisonian efforts to produce devices mainly for heat or in some cases transmutations.
  • There are efforts to certify such devices.
  • NASA LaRC has begun LENR design studies guided by the Weak Interaction Theory "

Mathematicians Predict the Future With Data From the Past [link][and here]
" Turchin — a professor at the University of Connecticut — is the driving force behind a field called “cliodynamics,” where scientists and mathematicians analyze history in the hopes of finding patterns they can then use to predict the future. It’s named after Clio, the Greek muse of history. "

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