Alan Boyle update

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

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Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Thu May 12, 2011 8:37 pm

Is that USA (United States of America) or UST (United States of Terra)? How bout USSSS (United States of Sol)? Hmmm, the USSSS Enterprise (United States of Sol Space Ship).

In the novels it was the United States of America. I am not sure whether you are familiar with the story, but Rhodan unites the planet to "Terra" and later does build a solar empire. So you are rather close.
I really loved the technical details about the story. Rhodans moon rocket was using NERVA engines for the 3rd stage while the first and second stage were chemical engines. One of the intitial authors was a physicist and that shows (the series has been running for more than 50 years now).
It is funny to hear the accounts of the authors nowadays. E.g. they were really upset that their hero made it to the moon "after" Neil Armstrong. They predicted in 1959 that the first moon landing would not happen until 1972. Their prediction for the political development was not quite correct either. E.g. they predicted an Asian federation from Russia and China (and probably other unnamed communist countries in the region). That never happened. Oddly enough though, it could happen now...
Sorry for the topic drift, it is just one of those childhood memories that I am very fond of ;)

crj11
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Postby crj11 » Thu May 12, 2011 8:51 pm

toddzilla wrote:Any other ideas for getting data?


Is their electric meter outside? You could potentially correlate their power usage with externally detected events.

toddzilla
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Postby toddzilla » Thu May 12, 2011 8:57 pm

I bet each test generates a spike of radio frequency noise. We could probably detect that as well.

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Thu May 12, 2011 9:04 pm

toddzilla wrote:Here's another idea. How about "leaving" a few neutron detectors nearby. Is there a sidewalk, telephone pole, or signpost close? I think they aren't shielding much right now, so we might get some signal outside the private property boundary. We would need other detectors a block up the road to measure background.

We might learn whether they are testing inert gasses or fuel. Alas, I'm too far away to volunteer myself. Any other ideas for getting data?


It's interesting to me, that EMC2's "explanation" of why they don't release data is that their client, the Navy, doesn't want them to, and the Navy's "explanation" of why they don't release data is that it's proprietary to EMC2. There seems to be some collusion here, intended to thwart the FOIA.

Likewise, I'd expect if one tried to gather intel on the state of affairs by placing sensors, one could run into serious trouble. No, the work isn't classified, but that doesn't mean someone at USG wouldn't find a way to make a nightmare for anyone gathering intel in aggressive ways.

I'd leave it alone. Placing neutron detectors nearby seems to me an invite to seeing just how committed the Navy is to privacy. Legally, you'd be in your rights to place such detectors, but in the more practical sense, knowing how little respect some at USG have for the rule of law and things like FOIA, I'd steer clear.
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

toddzilla
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Postby toddzilla » Thu May 12, 2011 9:13 pm

Well, that's a reasonable position to take. However, I do note the quote attached to your posts.

"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis


Shall we be skeptical scientists but compliant citizens? I say we exercise our rights or consider them lost.

Skipjack
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Postby Skipjack » Thu May 12, 2011 9:17 pm

No, the work isn't classified, but that doesn't mean someone at USG wouldn't find a way to make a nightmare for anyone gathering intel in aggressive ways.

You would probably end up in Guatanamo without the right to a lawyer. Ok, ok, I will shut up already ;)
In any case, with the state of affairs in the US, I would not dare to do any such thing.

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Thu May 12, 2011 9:19 pm

toddzilla wrote:Well, that's a reasonable position to take. However, I do note the quote attached to your posts.

"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis


Shall we be skeptical scientists but compliant citizens? I say we exercise our rights or consider them lost.


Point well made, but one needs to be careful in how one picks a fight. Is noting how many neutrons an experiment is putting out (assuming the inverse square law's obvious limits you'd face and the small amount of data you'd have) worth having IRS audit everyone you know?

Things like this are painful to recognize as possibilities, but they ARE possibilities--so it's not a point of courage we're here considering--it's a point of prudence, which is also a virtue. :-)
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

rjaypeters
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Postby rjaypeters » Fri May 13, 2011 1:33 am

Re: Military organizations in space.

Back when I was in Air Force Space Command, which was a component command of United States Space Command, I listened to a briefing by a participant of operation Eldorado Canyon. During the Q & A, which had ranged far afield from the subject of the briefing, I asked the Admiral when he thought the US would create a Space Force. He answered pretty thoughtfully: 'only when we have people living in space.'

I think which model (e.g. air force or navy) will prevail will depend on the nature of the operations undertaken. Long-endurance, independent commands? The navies of the world do that kind of work. Short missions which are dependent on relatively local and centralized resources? Air forces operate in this fashion.

Sure the USAF has done most of the US military work in space, but by no means all of it. There was and probably still is, a US Navy component command to whatever USSpacecom exists today (but I stopped keeping track a few years back).

Regarding the name of said space force. Back in the day, with the satellites I paid attention to, we called the group satellites we managed the constellation ("with the stars"). When the aformentioned Admiral refered to them as the "fleet", I had a visceral and bad reaction (carefully kept to myself, 'course). So I have the same reaction to a 'Space Navy'. Navies navigate the waves. Maybe "Astry?" Nah, too easily corrupted...
"Aqaba! By Land!" T. E. Lawrence

R. Peters

ladajo
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Postby ladajo » Fri May 13, 2011 3:13 am

The name of Space Command is a misnomer. The bulk of what they do is manage satellites. That does not equate in any way to managing a manned fleet.

cuddihy
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Postby cuddihy » Fri May 13, 2011 5:28 am

GIThruster wrote:
It's interesting to me, that EMC2's "explanation" of why they don't release data is that their client, the Navy, doesn't want them to, and the Navy's "explanation" of why they don't release data is that it's proprietary to EMC2. There seems to be some collusion here, intended to thwart the FOIA.



Actually my takeaway from the article on this is that the reason the data is not being released is exactly what Nebel said at the beginning of the WB-7 effort -- The Navy is interested in the technology, so doesn't want some nutty pre-mature leak of (possibly incomplete) information that would make media news, but again, perhaps prematurely, hurt the Navy and, if it rose to the attention of the wrong congress member, would cause MAJOR problems.
It's a lot easier to demagogue "waste" in the federal budget if you can point to some crackpot idea like a $10 Million fusion energy project that seems somehow tarnished.

It's just good sense all around to wait until you have something that can't really be argued with, especially since it's cheap enough to do so.

My other takeaway that I don't remember seeing before...

*WB-7 did indeed do fusion, not just inert plasma testing as some suggested*

Oh, and for you non-Chair Force folks who wonder how the government funding works, here's the deal:

Although all the STIMULUS money was "obligated" (that is, set aside) when the contract was cut, which means, there's no possibility that the total money available for the contract will be cut from the Navy, anything that requires changes --like more expensive parts--would depend on money shenanigans that Congress is working, such as continuing authority, etc.

Also, it is likely that some of the money for the effort was programmed (POMed) at the time the contract was awarded, but not obligated until milestones are met. Milestones such as completing WB-7x review, completing WB-8 design, etc. Those are affected by changes to the money flow.
Tom.Cuddihy

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Faith is the foundation of reason.

GIThruster
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Postby GIThruster » Fri May 13, 2011 7:24 am

Tom, that's all true and makes good sense, but it is certainly a violation of the rule of law. Because the project is not classified, and is funded by USG, it is subject to FOIA. The way Navy is thwarting the law is to get EMC2 to claim ALL the work is proprietary when it is not. EMC2 is claiming it's the Navy that wants it hushed, and the Navy is claiming it's EMC2 that wants it hushed. The law of the land says that since we're paying for it, we have a right to know what's going on unless there is a national security issue at hand--and there is not. So even though Nebel's reasoning makes perfect sense to me, it still leads to a violation of the law.
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

palladin9479
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Postby palladin9479 » Fri May 13, 2011 8:14 am

GIT,

Try to think about it the other way. Do you ~want~ it made into a "national" secret? That is very easy to do, only requires the stroke of a pen from the nearest flag officer. I for one would much rather then use the back-door hush method then the official secret hush method, the first being easy to dispel the later being much more difficult.

chrismb
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Postby chrismb » Fri May 13, 2011 9:54 am

We'll know either way by the end of the year anyway, after our FoI requst goes in in October.

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Fri May 13, 2011 11:14 am

Skipjack wrote:
The term "Marines" is just using a foreign language word for "sea" (mar) to label soldiers on the sea. Soldiers in space should thus be termed "astrenes". Astrones? Cosmenes? What is your suggestion?

Yeah, from that POV you are of course right. But then you could not call it a "space navy" either.
I think "Space Force" is the most accurate.
"Major of the US Space Force" has a good ring to it, IMHO, no?


Lt. Commander is better.

http://www.defense.gov/about/insignias/officers.aspx
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.
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THE OPEN POLYWELL FUSION CONSORTIUM

ltgbrown
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Postby ltgbrown » Fri May 13, 2011 11:17 am

Lt. Commander is better.


Concur! (Although Commander sounds a little better!) :D
Famous last words, "Hey, watch this!"


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