18 posts • joined 19 Mar 2011
Re: Pretty sick with all the western reporting of this...
I was in Tokyo 2 months ago. There was absolutely no lack of light at any time and I'm not talking about people glowing.
Re: The Tooth Fairy and Molten Salt Thorium Reactors
Thorium breeders are thermal, not fast breeders. Why are you claiming otherwise? And if you're so concerned about the temperature of the fuel please explain the freezing problem or the fact that ORNL turned off the reactor on the weekends! Try doing that with a light water reactor.
Re: The Tooth Fairy and Molten Salt Thorium Reactors
Aside from the fact that molten salt reactors with graphite moderators were demonstrated years before powerpoint even existed you're completely accurate. ORNL ran their reactors on both 235U and 233U, the latter of which was provided by separate breeders operating from, wait for it, thorium. It's fair to say that ORNL never built a fully integrated reactor that bred its own fuel and had its own attached processing plant (because that wasn't the target of the research), but it's completely inaccurate to claim that the the cycle has never been demonstrated. As to the nonsense about thorium requiring "lots of neutrons to breed" I suggest you do a little more research into the neutron economy of liquid fueled thorium reactors. Or were you just trying to confuse the issue by requiring the thorium to be burned suboptimally in a solid fuel reactor like the Norwegians are playing with?
But go ahead and keep advocating for expensive, high-pressure reactors with pathetically low burn fractions of what, ~5% of the already enriched fuel? That's certainly a fantastic way of bringing down costs...
Flash has hit the density wall already. The latest Sandisk offering didn't even go through a process shrink but simply increased die area and efficiency. Flash fabs are hideously expensive. Think Billion$ expensive, and their annual storage output is a pittance compared to the HDD business, and that's not going to change any time soon. 3D NAND? Seriously? Do you even realize what 3D NAND is? The bottleneck in any fab is tool throughput. Please explain how running the same wafer/die through the same photo/etch/plating tools for each layer somehow results in any net gain in output. Oh, you say you can use old fabs and older nodes. Great. You've made it slightly cheaper but still haven't solved the problem of being able to ship a sufficient number of exa/peta/zetabytes to replace the annual storage capacity produced by the HDD makers. To do that means building more fabs. LOTS more fabs, which means lots more $Billion$. And you're going to do that all so someone pays you $0.03/GB and bitches about how that's stealing food right out of the mouths of their children? Yeah, right.
Finally, you want to know why flash is never going to beat HDD's on cost? The answer is simple. It costs a lot of money when you have to pattern every single bit of your storage medium. HDD's have to pattern exactly one bit per surface: the head. That means that HDD's have less process content per surface and will always be cheaper unless you can suddenly figure out a way to get all those NAND cells to pattern themselves. Good luck with that.
Oh, and HDD's haven't used spinning "rust" for about 20 years now. Do try to keep up.
Re: Those Republicans...
Or they read the Oregon Medicaid (the primary means of enrolling additional uninsured and low income under Obamacare) study which showed no statistically significant health improvement. The paid attention to the lack of global warming over the last 15 years, and they looked at the outcome of private schools vs. the abject failure of massively funded monstrosities like the CPS, NYC, DC, and LA school systems.
Re: One wonders what he'd make of the unholy mess the US is in now.
Oh yeah, Democrats are right wing alright. The list of Obama's right wing accomplishments:
Expansion of the entitlement state
Increased and more progressive taxes
Payoff to union buddies in the UAW in the GM bankruptcy
Doubling down on money losing green policies.
Yup, very conservative those items. The reality is that JFK couldn't get nominated by today's Democratic party. He did cut marginal tax rates, you know. I'm just weeping that the US seems determined to enter into glorious European decline. At least we'll all be equally miserable, and that's what really counts, isn't it?
"it is just wonderful to be back in Oregon, and over the last 15 months we've traveled to every corner of the United States. I've now been in fifty .... seven states? I think one left to go. One left to go." - B. H. Obama
Re: Let's play Spot The Pause!
Yes, lets: http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/wti/from:1980/plot/hadcrut4gl/from:1980/plot/uah/from:1980
Funny. No trend since at least the turn of the century.
But more importantly the climastrologists have failed basic stats:
The models supposedly include radiative forcing (and it's claimed to not be that big to begin with) so the fact that the models include that term and still couldn't predict the pause is a problem, don't you think? And if natural variability is of a magnitude to stall the human component of warming, then it's of a magnitude to double the perceived warming of the 80-98 period which has nearly all of the warming that has the warmists wetting themselves over. Recall that temps were flat or cooling for about 30 years ending in the mid to late 70's.
Re: Impartiality and scientific theories
"(c). Until someone does that then AGW is the best explanation we have for the observed climatic changes of the last 50 years."
Please explain the failure of the models to predict the past 15 years of flat temperatures. Please explain the failure of the models to predict the increased Antarctic ice extent. Please explain why GISSTemp has methodically revised temperatures before 1950 lower and temperatures after 1950 higher. Please explain why the ARGO network is showing a flattening of upper ocean heat content. Please explain how WWF grey literature claiming that the Himalayan glaciers would disappear this century made it into the most "authoritative" document on global warming (IPCC AR4); or the host of other non-peer reviewed literature that was also included.
Please explain how the current climastrologists' models masquerading as science can be proven false. It isn't science if it isn't falsifiable and the warmists explain everything as CAGW: floods, droughts, hurricanes, lack of hurricanes (Did you know the US is currently experiencing its longest recorded stretch of no landfalling Cat 3 or higher hurricane), lack of snow followed by... snow?! Remember that masturbation and simulation are alike: do them both often enough and long enough and you start to think they're real.
This isn't science, it's the Climate Inquisition.
Is the planet warming? Yes, a little.
Are modern temps "unprecedented?" Ask the Vikings that farmed portions of Greenland a millenium ago. Could we do the same today with 11th century technology?
Is human generated CO2 contributing warming? Yes, a little, i.e. about 1C for every doubling.
Is the cult of CAGW getting paid its rent for crying wolf? It is and to the tune of billions of dollars a year.
No, or at least your wording is confusing. To each ship the other appears to be receding at .84c because in each case I have to add the two velocities together and I have to account for relativity when I do so. However, to a stationary observer standing right in the middle the two are separating at a combined rate 1.1c. Note that it is the space between them that is exceeding the speed of light and not the objects themselves. The same is true for a warp drive that compresses space in front of the ship and expands it behind. From the perspective of the ship it never exceeds the speed of light even though the space which it occupies does.
"Is it that difficult to remember that as you go faster the distance traveled is shorter and the time it takes becomes longer?"
Yeah, no. If I take off for Proxima Centauri at 0.9c the trip doesn't "take longer." Time dilation and length contraction for me means that the trip is shorter in time and space. For the outside observer my length contracts by the Lorentz factor as well, but that's trivial in the grand scheme of things. Bottom line is that for me the trip to PC takes less than the 4.24/.9=4.7 years that you Earthers observe. It's more like 2 years in my shipboard time.
What prevents you from breaking --or more accurately going-- the speed of light is that your mass would be infinite and the energy required to get you to that speed would also be infinite. If you can avoid the singularity right at the speed of light then at least the equations don't go bang, but I don't know what imaginary mass means.
Re: Plug in cars ain't green.
The Chevy Volt is as bad as pure electrics. Even priced at $40k and with a $7500 tax credit they still lose money on every sale. The Cruz is half the price, profitable at that price and nearly as fuel efficient. Imagine if they put a diesel in the Cruz...
And turbines ARE combustion engines. I think you meant reciprocating piston engines. We'll ignore the Wankels for now.
Re: National Sales Tax
Ding! Someone finally gets it. The other reality is that businesses don't really pay taxes. Consumers, employees, and shareholders (capital) pay taxes and it's usually more of the foremost of those three.
Re: Will it need new software?
You're forgetting cost. Yes, it'll replace system memory. Hibernate/standby get much faster. It won't replace HDD's anytime soon.
Re: SIT UP AND PAY ATTENTION!
Fine, it's 80-100. It'll be back to 50 before the end of next year and possibly sooner.
Let NTR Die
NTR is a pain and it has limited Isp. Sure, cooling is a little easier because your reaction mass carries the pile's heat with it, but at ~2000sec you're still going to need a lot of reaction mass and time to get to Mars. Just let it die. Focus on compact nuclear electrical sources and solve the reactor cooling problem. You'll be a lot better off in the long run.
Not impressed with HTPC
The best part of Sage is having a centralized server for the entire house. I don't want a dedicated HTPC for every screen in the house. Sage software was $80 and the extenders were $150. If you have more than a couple of screens in your house the difference in price of the extenders versus having even a cheap HTPC for every screen will quickly pay for the software.
I haven't played with MediaPortal, but it doesn't look like it has any capabilities beyond Sage. MediaPortal is also Windows only. Linux support is(was?) an after thought on Sage, but it was available and I can verify that it works.
Still, if Sage is fully Googled and ceases to work, it's good to know that there are some sub-optimal alternatives out there.
Isp and Payload/Mass/Fuel Fraction
So the density of LOX is 4600x that at sea level. So *what*? Carrying that LOX *onboard* reduces the useful payload. The best hydrocarbon rockets have a specific impulse well short of *400sec*. A ramjet has a specific impulse more than *double* that and a turbojet (jet not fan) can easily get close to *2000sec*. Since the exhaust velocity will be very high for a scramjet I expect its Isp will be closer to that of the turbojet than the ramjet. That means you get a *much* higher Isp and your payload mass fraction goes *up*. By not carrying *most* of your *reaction mass* and instead borrowing it from the atmosphere you can deliver more mass to orbit. Of course if the engines themselves are extremely heavy then that would be *bad*. A 350sec Isp rocket can deliver about 6% of it's starting fueled mass to orbit. An 800sec Isp (sc)ramjet operated for the entire burn to LEO would deliver *70%* of it's fully fueled ground mass to orbit. Breaking it up into a turbojet/ramjet/scramjet/rocket profile is left as an exercise to the reader.
Ramjet's are great for high speed applications and relatively efficient in the supersonic regime. Their only upper limitation is that combustion must occur subsonically (hence the missing SC) and when they get to the hypersonic range they have to slow down their intake air so much that they melt. SCramjets get around that by magically only slowing the intake air speed by a fraction and so have less heat load to contend with. They substitute the problem of keeping the flame lit which apparently P&W are solving. You are also right that they need to do most of their acceleration in the atmosphere and so skin temperatures, really leading edge temps, are a serious concern. And yes, you still have to get it up to at least a mid supersonic regime to transition through a ramjet and then scramjet mode, but no one outlawed variable inlet geometries. Without a doubt scramjets *are* potentially *very* useful for commercial space applications.
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