Rick Has A Word or two for sceptics.

Point out news stories, on the net or in mainstream media, related to polywell fusion.

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MSimon
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Rick Has A Word or two for sceptics.

Post by MSimon »

At the comments to my American Thinker article:

http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/06/ ... nergy.html

We have a sceptic (several posts by sceptic check them out):
Posted by: WR Jonas
Jun 19, 01:18 PM

I have spoken out here about my skepticism based on a provable dynamic and truth . There will always be ample reasons to spend other peoples money. To give this research or any other some noble purpose or cause does not necessarily make the aims correct or worthwhile .
If we were still shooting rockets at the moon and coming up empty or failed we would have stopped it a long time ago. This canard of ,try until we run of money, is the basis for continuing a proven failure. Because it is Navy project doesn't give it any greater chance of success.
So , how about we put the fusion research industry on a time, results or dollar limit to see if it is ever going to produce anything . Any takers?
Posted by: rnebel
Jun 23, 04:11 PM

Mr. Jonas:

I'll take you up on that.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

kurt9
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Post by kurt9 »

Mr. Jonas's skepticism is understandable. We are all jaded and skeptical of the promise of fusion power because of the billions spent on Tokamak and laser fusion projects over the past few decades.

However, if Mr. Jonas had clicked through to this board and read the solicitations carefully, he would know that the Navy is funding EMC2 on a very short leash with continued funding contingent upon attainment of specific technical milestones. This is in no way an open ended project like the Tokamak and laser fusion projects.

zbarlici
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Post by zbarlici »

the point is, kurt, that r.nebel knows he doesn`t need ridiculous amounts of funding to get this research done.

chrismb
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Post by chrismb »

kurt9 wrote: However, if Mr. Jonas had clicked through to this board and read the solicitations carefully, he would know that the Navy is funding EMC2 on a very short leash with continued funding contingent upon attainment of specific technical milestones. This is in no way an open ended project like the Tokamak and laser fusion projects.
But similarly the Navy's involvement proves nothing. On the same topic on fusor.net [of what, if anything, the Navy's underlying motivations are and what could be read from them] I wrote the following;


I reckon The Senior Chop* has come along and said "Right, I've dished out $20M over 20 years - this energy stuff is now dead important and I've got The Old Man sitting on my head about it - so what've you got to show me???" and those who've commissioned the work have looked at each other sheepishly, scoured their desks and shelves for The Gouge** on this expense, and figure they've got Zip. No proven fast-fast neutrons, no peer-reviewed technical papers, no scientific results that can stand on their own feet. So they pick some George to tell The Chop "ur, it's almost finished but we need another million or two to get the results to you next year"... and then they bloody prey that EMC2 gets some auditable, peer-reviewable results by then!!

[*Supply Officer; **key information]

(This is just *a* possible, believable sequence of events, not necessarily what has actually happened.)

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Post by TallDave »

It's not possible. There is a review board, so all the results are peer-reviewed. The contracts have specific reporting requirements.

The review of the WB-7 results led to WB-8, not a bureaucrat's sheepish look.

Helius
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Post by Helius »

chrismb wrote:
kurt9 wrote: However, if Mr. Jonas had clicked through to this board and read the solicitations carefully, he would know that the Navy is funding EMC2 on a very short leash with continued funding contingent upon attainment of specific technical milestones. This is in no way an open ended project like the Tokamak and laser fusion projects.
But similarly the Navy's involvement proves nothing. On the same topic on fusor.net [of what, if anything, the Navy's underlying motivations are and what could be read from them] I wrote the following;


I reckon The Senior Chop* has come along and said "Right, I've dished out $20M over 20 years - this energy stuff is now dead important and I've got The Old Man sitting on my head about it - so what've you got to show me???" and those who've commissioned the work have looked at each other sheepishly, scoured their desks and shelves for The Gouge** on this expense, and figure they've got Zip. No proven fast-fast neutrons, no peer-reviewed technical papers, no scientific results that can stand on their own feet. So they pick some George to tell The Chop "ur, it's almost finished but we need another million or two to get the results to you next year"... and then they bloody prey that EMC2 gets some auditable, peer-reviewable results by then!!

[*Supply Officer; **key information]

(This is just *a* possible, believable sequence of events, not necessarily what has actually happened.)
Then again, they all just might recognize great science in a field that has a very dynamic impact on naval propulsion. Even if Q<1, but orders of magnitude above other IEC devices, this is still an incredibly interesting device for Naval propulsion with respect to next generations of Naval Fission reactors.

In contrast to ITER the Navy is focused on discovering the specifics of what a wiffle ball can do for them; ITER is a research/prestige focused project, with no organization expecting to get a device that will deliver anything other than prestige.

The Navy doesn't want prestige, they just want to save lives.

TallDave
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Post by TallDave »

I think people often don't realize the technical prowess of the U.S. Navy. Because of technologies like Phalanx, Aegis, ECW, cruise missiles, etc, a single carrier group could defeat the combined military forces of any other nation on Earth. The U.S. Navy has ten.

They didn't get there rubberstamping failure.

Professor Science
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Post by Professor Science »

Helius wrote: they just want to save lives.
Let's not be too hasty deciding what people's motives are, k? Let's just get some good science done.
The pursuit of knowledge is in the best of interest of all mankind.

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Post by blaisepascal »

TallDave wrote:It's not possible. There is a review board, so all the results are peer-reviewed. The contracts have specific reporting requirements.

The review of the WB-7 results led to WB-8, not a bureaucrat's sheepish look.
I didn't read that as a take on the results of the WB-7 contract, but perhaps what lead to the WB-7 contract being written.

kurt9
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Post by kurt9 »

chrismb wrote:
kurt9 wrote: However, if Mr. Jonas had clicked through to this board and read the solicitations carefully, he would know that the Navy is funding EMC2 on a very short leash with continued funding contingent upon attainment of specific technical milestones. This is in no way an open ended project like the Tokamak and laser fusion projects.
But similarly the Navy's involvement proves nothing. On the same topic on fusor.net [of what, if anything, the Navy's underlying motivations are and what could be read from them] I wrote the following;


I reckon The Senior Chop* has come along and said "Right, I've dished out $20M over 20 years - this energy stuff is now dead important and I've got The Old Man sitting on my head about it - so what've you got to show me???" and those who've commissioned the work have looked at each other sheepishly, scoured their desks and shelves for The Gouge** on this expense, and figure they've got Zip. No proven fast-fast neutrons, no peer-reviewed technical papers, no scientific results that can stand on their own feet. So they pick some George to tell The Chop "ur, it's almost finished but we need another million or two to get the results to you next year"... and then they bloody prey that EMC2 gets some auditable, peer-reviewable results by then!!

[*Supply Officer; **key information]

(This is just *a* possible, believable sequence of events, not necessarily what has actually happened.)
Possible, but the solicitations are rather tightly worded with well specified milestones. Given the pressure the Navy is receiving from the DoE not to fund this technology (it competes with Tokamak), I think there really is a fair bit of pressure on EMC2 to perform or they really will get the chop.

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Post by kttopdad »

kurt9 wrote:Given the pressure the Navy is receiving from the DoE not to fund this technology (it competes with Tokamak), I think there really is a fair bit of pressure on EMC2 to perform or they really will get the chop.
Do you know of specific pressure regarding EMC^2, or are you paraphrasing assertions made by Dr. Bussard regarding the general relationship between DOD and DOE?

Chuck Connors
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Post by Chuck Connors »

kurt9 wrote:Possible, but the solicitations are rather tightly worded with well specified milestones. Given the pressure the Navy is receiving from the DoE not to fund this technology (it competes with Tokamak), I think there really is a fair bit of pressure on EMC2 to perform or they really will get the chop.
I'm with kttopdad- If I'm not mistaken the Secretary of Energy is even familiar with the the Polywell, and is a true research physicist to boot. We all understand political machinations, but I'm not sure I see much of a smoking gun here.

I cannot believe the Tokamak/ITER crowd believes Polywell is much of a threat at its current funding level. The Navy is driving the funding, not 'big science', and I'm pretty sure Mr. Nebel prefers to keep it this way strictly to avoid what you are speculating about.

kurt9
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Post by kurt9 »

kttopdad wrote:
kurt9 wrote:Given the pressure the Navy is receiving from the DoE not to fund this technology (it competes with Tokamak), I think there really is a fair bit of pressure on EMC2 to perform or they really will get the chop.
Do you know of specific pressure regarding EMC^2, or are you paraphrasing assertions made by Dr. Bussard regarding the general relationship between DOD and DOE?
Its a combination of my repeating comments made by Dr. Bussard as well as my general knowledge about how bureaucracy protects pet projects. The Tokamak, NASA, and most medical research are examples of Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy in action. My experiences with NASA and the space movement in the late 80's and early 90's convinced me of the obsession that bureaucracies have with defending their turf.

Helius
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Post by Helius »

Chuck Connors wrote: I'm with kttopdad- If I'm not mistaken the Secretary of Energy is even familiar with the the Polywell, and is a true research physicist to boot. We all understand political machinations, but I'm not sure I see much of a smoking gun here.
How much smoke from the gun barrel do you need? Steven Chu is more a bureaucrat than a scientist; Where's the IFR?
He's towing the line for the "humans have it too good" minimalists, not spending a dime on any research that will actually exceed Coal in its energy density. The DOE allocates funding to guarantee to fall short of that obvious potential. It's all windmills and insulation, with some biomass to keep the Midwestern farmers happy. No high power density systems *this* decade, if the Chu DOE has anything to say about it. Political Machinations? Yes: Those that should be leading are following, and those that are currently leading have an agenda that is steeped in a seething distrust of humanity. I'll bet Steven Chu spent more time pandering to political benefactors than he has doing research. What's a Nobel prize mean anyway? After all even Al Gore won one for his scare mongering with regards to climate change. Now he sells carbon swaps.

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Post by MSimon »

Helius wrote:
Chuck Connors wrote: I'm with kttopdad- If I'm not mistaken the Secretary of Energy is even familiar with the the Polywell, and is a true research physicist to boot. We all understand political machinations, but I'm not sure I see much of a smoking gun here.
How much smoke from the gun barrel do you need? Steven Chu is more a bureaucrat than a scientist; Where's the IFR?
He's towing the line for the "humans have it too good" minimalists, not spending a dime on any research that will actually exceed Coal in its energy density. The DOE allocates funding to guarantee to fall short of that obvious potential. It's all windmills and insulation, with some biomass to keep the Midwestern farmers happy. No high power density systems *this* decade, if the Chu DOE has anything to say about it. Political Machinations? Yes: Those that should be leading are following, and those that are currently leading have an agenda that is steeped in a seething distrust of humanity. I'll bet Steven Chu spent more time pandering to political benefactors than he has doing research. What's a Nobel prize mean anyway? After all even Al Gore won one for his scare mongering with regards to climate change. Now he sells carbon swaps.
I believe he has spent much of his time since the Nobel running government labs.

BTW it would be much better to have an engineer running the DOE than a scientist. For engineers money and time are critical parts of their thinking. For scientists - not so much.

I did have high hopes for him. Now I see him as you do. Just another Malthusian.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

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