News Archives | Strange Ideas
1/27/2006 Alt. Energy / Space / Moon. Russia to mine Moon for helium-3 to boost energy supply
"Russia has staked out plans to recapture its Soviet-era space-race glory and start mining the Moon for a promising energy resource that scientists say could meet the Earth's power needs for more than a thousand years. Nikolai Sevastyanov, head of Russia's giant Energia Space Corporation, has unveiled plans to build a permanent base on the Moon within a decade and to start mining the planet for helium 3, a sought-after isotope, by 2020. The idea would be to use helium 3 to power thermo-nuclear power stations, harnessing its potency to achieve nuclear fusion. The technology to exploit helium 3 is still under development, but it has been touted by a significant academic school of thought as "the ideal fuel of the future" with several countries expressing interest. The race is now on to be the first to make it work." - guarduk
Excellent. Dream big and go for it. Are US leaders tragically short-sighted in their war quests for oil and their backward thinking plans for a return to dirty coal? The Russians may leave us in the ( moon ) dust if they get this clean fusion power to work. What's so great about helium-3?
"The appeal of helium-3 fusion stems from the nature of its reaction products. Helium-4 is non-radioactive and the lone high-energy proton produced is easily contained using electric and magnetic fields. In contrast, most other proposed fusion processes for power generation lead to the production of energetic neutrons, bombardment with which renders reactor components radioactive. Most of the energy from the conventional fusion reaction is given off in this form, which is difficult to harness for energy ..." - wikipedia
8/2/2005 Alt Energy / Biology / Earth. Super High Pressrure Bacteria, Methane and the Bermuda Triangle.
"Scientists and engineers at Cardiff University are investigating bacteria from deep sediments which despite high pressures (greater than 1,000 atmospheres), gradually increasing temperatures (from an icy 2°C to over 100°C), great depth (several kilometres) and age (many millions of years) may contain most of the bacteria on Earth. Some of these bacteria produce methane that accumulates in "gas hydrates" -- a super concentrated methane ice that contains more carbon than all conventional fossil fuels and, therefore, a potentially enormous energy source. ... One theory now suggests that when the covering of "methane ice" which exists over much of the seabed of the Bermuda Triangle becomes unstable; this causes instability of the sea and an explosive mixture of air and methane above. Any ships or planes travelling over the area could sink or catch fire.
"So ancient, deep-sediment bacteria may be a key to sustainable energy in the future and to explaining a few disasters," said Professor Parkes. " - more
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