Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

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

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classicpenny
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Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by classicpenny »

There’s been enough time, people. The Polywell is not a difficult concept. Either we do not yet have a viable commercial Polywell because it can’t possibly work; or we do not yet have a viable commercial Polywell because a decisively large and influential group of business interests do not want it to work. Honestly, I have no idea which reason is operating here. I do not want it to be either reason; but there has definitely been enough time.

Robert Bussard, inventor of the first functioning Polywell, was ready to spend several hundred million dollars building a full-scale 100 megawatt Polywell back in 2006; but “they” had already cut off his funding in 2005. He made a fuss, and (along with Tom Ligon) got the attention of a lot of people. But then Dr. Bussard died. And at some point, Tom Ligon was asked to sign a non-disclosure agreement. The Navy started funding the Polywell again in 2007 –but with only a few million dollars, far far short of the required amount.

In 2008, a good friend of mine, who happens to have been a contract negotiator for the Navy, was having dinner with a friend of his who happened to be a staff judge-advocate in the Navy, with a law degree and a degree in nuclear engineering. My friend told the lawyer-engineer about the Polywell, and about the web site that I had up back then. Within 18 hours my website was completely GONE with no warning whatsoever – off the internet. When I called my server (Apple) about it, they told me that they had removed my website because I had “exceeded my data download allocation for the month.” In order for that to have happened, people would have had to download hundreds of thousands of copies of my Polywell book, which was available for download on the website, and certainly not a book for which there is any discernable demand that I have been able to see.

A year or two later, I built another –different- Polywell website. Shortly after I went on line, I received a phone call from a person who claimed to represent EMC2. He asked me not to advocate the contacting of Congressmen in support of the Polywell, because too many Congressmen and media people were harassing the Chief of the Office of Naval Research; he also asked me to remove the pictures of Dr Park and Dr Nebel from my website, and remove the San Diego EMC2 address. I complied with all of his requests.

Rick Nebel, Dr Bussard’s replacement was ready to spend hundreds of millions of dollars building a full-scale 100 megawatt Polywell back in late 2009; but then he resigned in Fall 2010 for reasons that have never been adequately explained. (The Navy was continuing to dribble out a few million dollars a year – still pathetically short of the amount required.) Nebel hasn’t said a public word about the Polywell since. And neither has anyone else.

About 4 years ago Dr Steven Chu –Secretary of the Department of Energy- said he was aware of the Polywell. Yet, to my knowledge, the Department of Energy has never so much as acknowledged the existence of the Navy’s Polywell program.

Indeed we haven’t heard a single authoritative word about the Polywell for many years now.

Business interests are not terribly concerned about ITER or NIF (which cost many many hundreds of millions of dollars) because they are both long-term research endeavors with little promise of commercial viability for at least 30 years.

Business interests are not terribly concerned about wind or solar or tidal or geothermal because none of them constitute a serious threat to big coal, big oil, or big natural gas. Business interests understand the true magnitude of the world’s rate of fossil fuel consumption, and they know that NONE of these “green” sources of energy will put so much as a dent in the world’s demand for fossil fuel.

Business interests ARE terribly concerned about the potential of popular belief in global warming to place a VERY significant dent in the world’s demand for fossil fuel. They are so concerned about it that they have successfully convinced many congressmen and many media people to neuter any serious attempts to address global warming issues.

I once thought the Polywell was one of the very few ways that our planet might be able to seriously address global warming. Could it be that these same business interests see the Polywell in the same way, and could this be the reason that the Polywell is going nowhere?

Could it be that Business interests are not terribly concerned about the pathetic state of Polywell funding because that is EXACTLY what they want?

Just asking….

choff
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by choff »

No news is no news.

Maybe the recent report from Skunkworks is the answer, no reports because it's seriously under top secret wraps, and they've been doing a Manhatten style black box program 100MW reactor the whole time.
CHoff

hanelyp
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by hanelyp »

If the polywell works, the Navy has strong incentive to have working reactors before the rest of the work is sure the system works, or at least before some key detail is well known.

If the polywell has a critical flaw, they have an incentive to make competitors spin their wheels for awhile before they figure it out.
The daylight is uncomfortably bright for eyes so long in the dark.

mvanwink5
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by mvanwink5 »

Please, not the global warming conspiracy theory. That is worse than my asteroid conspiracy theory, and that was just a joke. The only place where billions are being thrown every which way, uselessly I might add, is researching this idiotic global warming. That is where all the research money has gone. Just look at the maybe, could be, might be "research" articles being published on AGW.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Stubby
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by Stubby »

Several issues with the story.
Maybe you had a weird contract that allowed deletion of your website if you go over your bandwidth but normally providers don't delete content for that reason.
If your site was deleted without cause, you have recourse.

Taking down web content on the basis of a request from an unverified source is also weird.
Everything is bullshit unless proven otherwise. -A.C. Beddoe

CaptainBeowulf
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by CaptainBeowulf »

I agree with this:
If the polywell works, the Navy has strong incentive to have working reactors before the rest of the work is sure the system works, or at least before some key detail is well known.

If the polywell has a critical flaw, they have an incentive to make competitors spin their wheels for awhile before they figure it out.
And partially with this:
No news is no news.

Maybe the recent report from Skunkworks is the answer, no reports because it's seriously under top secret wraps, and they've been doing a Manhatten style black box program 100MW reactor the whole time.
It's possible that the Air Force and Navy, with Lockheed-Martin and EMC2 as the proprietors/subcontractors, have started an under-wraps project as a result of WB7/WB7.1. WB8 went ahead partially as cover, partially to examine long term options for boron.

However, they decided that for a near-term 100MW system, the best course of action was to dump the thing in a cylinder, switch to RF heating and do it the simplest way possible with deuterium and tritium. Lockheed has the engineering pool and the manufacturing plant to get the "simple" prototype done within five years and then start churning the things out on the assembly line within ten years. Lockheed gets a good chunk of the profits, but some royalties go back to EMC2. Meanwhile EMC2 keeps researching the "true" Polywell concept with the objective of the boron reactor. The RF deuterium-tritium in a big can reactor serves as a testbed to iron out remaining kinks as well as to earn enough money to justify the final big funding push to get the boron Polywell.

Or, L-M just scooped EMC because EMC didn't get the patent, the Navy got wind of this, and isn't betting that EMC can beat L-M to the finish line.

Both are nice conspiracy theories :mrgreen:

You also have to keep in mind the current political climate. The U.S. deficit really is out of control, and people are looking for examples of government "waste" to cut. Polywell research could easily be portrayed by some types as ivory tower pie-in-the-sky research that will never lead to a working product. If you pretty much rely on government for your research funding, best to keep your head down and not be noticed right now. Lockheed-Martin doesn't have to worry about that, because it doesn't appear to necessarily need government funding to build its somewhat Polywell-esque deuterium-tritium device.
Either we do not yet have a viable commercial Polywell because it can’t possibly work; or we do not yet have a viable commercial Polywell because a decisively large and influential group of business interests do not want it to work.
Rockets are also a simple idea in theory. Goddard and Tsiolkovsky did the basic theory, built experimental rockets, and demonstrated that they could work in the early 20th century. It took until the mid 20th century for them to really catch on (early 1940s for katyushas and moaning minnies, 1944/45 for the V2, 1950s for IRBMs, ICBMs and a sputnik-launcher, 1960s for moon rockets). Just because it's simple in theory doesn't mean that there aren't a thousand and one annoying little details that have to be worked out in order to make the thing work. Heck, are Tokamaks really that complicated in theory?

mvanwink5
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by mvanwink5 »

CaptainBeowulf's response IMSO is well reasoned and diplomatic, which for my taste is always the higher road. I have thought about the LM effort and I can'r see how it can't be anything other than a fast track Polywell. To get a beta=1 with high internal pressure, there must be an ion pump to get the D and T into the cylinder reaction zone, and I don't know of a simpler way to do it than electrostatics. So, with my personal bias, it seems to be a fast track black op work around the public funding display window we have been using on EMC2 efforts. Furthermore, we know of a damaged nuclear submarine in repair that might be fitted with a LM DT thermal Polywell device, just to add to the conspiracy theory.

Best regards to all bored or impatient CT'rs
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by Skipjack »

The LM announcement has sadly been the most exciting news in years. I wished there were more details.

ladajo
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by ladajo »

Or maybe you guys a leaping ahead without looking.
We do not even really know what Lockheed Martin has come up with. We have thin speculation based on the limited commentary they provided. Yes it sounds Polywell like, but does anyone really know what the configuration is? I didn't think so.

As far as news for EMC2. We know they have money, we know they are working. If they stop working that will become clear as well.
I think that this Summer is going to be telling, one way or the other. It may take until Fall for news either way to make the rounds, but $$$ is what matters. Especially these days.

I have not looked at the money trail for a while. Maybe it is time for a poke to see what activity there has been.

Patience.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

mvanwink5
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by mvanwink5 »

Or maybe you guys a leaping ahead without looking.
We do not even really know what Lockheed Martin has come up with. We have thin speculation based on the limited commentary they provided.
Another question is why LM would say anything at all, then leave out anything that would give us any more than a vague idea of what is being done? Thus, putting the blind and antsy into leaping like a thumped frog. I wonder if the LM guys have a sadistic sense of humor?
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

ladajo
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by ladajo »

I think we should just pay attention, and see if anything more surfaces from Lockheed Martin. We need more information in order to properly assess.
If it was meant to be a secret, they would not have talked about it. They know full well how to manage information.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

hanelyp
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by hanelyp »

Of the reactor types I'm aware of, Field Reverse Configuration looks like the best fit of the limited data on the LM project. Particularly the chamber shape and the 'few open field lines' point.
The daylight is uncomfortably bright for eyes so long in the dark.

paperburn1
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by paperburn1 »

ladajo wrote:Or maybe you guys a leaping ahead without looking.
We do not even really know what Lockheed Martin has come up with. We have thin speculation based on the limited commentary they provided. Yes it sounds Polywell like, but does anyone really know what the configuration is? I didn't think so.

As far as news for EMC2. We know they have money, we know they are working. If they stop working that will become clear as well.
I think that this Summer is going to be telling, one way or the other. It may take until Fall for news either way to make the rounds, but $$$ is what matters. Especially these days.

I have not looked at the money trail for a while. Maybe it is time for a poke to see what activity there has been.

Patience.
I disagree, I would base its "go or no go" on October. They have more that adequate funding for the current effort until March 2014. I feel the silence we hear is the busy little squints, geeks, and tweaks toiling away in the workshop not caring about telling other people whats going on because they are having a very interesting time.
Just saying 8)
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

paperburn1
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by paperburn1 »

ladajo wrote: If it was meant to be a secret, they would not have talked about it. They know full well how to manage information.
LM is very compartmentalised in budget as well. Bob will not tell Joe a thing unless it means more funding or control for Bob. As per example when I was working for them on a project another division was getting rid of a computer system that we desperately needed for spare parts. When we said we wanted it they were going to charge us 130,000 dollars for the parts or they would go to the scrap pile. We did not have the funds in the budget so the other division scrapped the parts instead of transferring them. Why? Blue dollar can never be used on green dollar projects. If we were a blue dollar project we could have had them for free. lunacy I know but that's what happened.
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

GIThruster
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Re: Is the ABSENCE of news, news?

Post by GIThruster »

paperburn1 wrote:They have more that adequate funding for the current effort until March 2014. I feel the silence we hear is the busy little squints, geeks, and tweaks toiling away in the workshop not caring about telling other people whats going on because they are having a very interesting time.
Just saying 8)
Yup. No reason to expect to hear anything for the time being. Even when they need to go for more funding, I wouldn't expect us to hear much about it. In fact, one might even argue that L-M's cylindrical effort ois the result of too much transparency under Bussard. Without MC2, I doubt L-M would be doing what they're doing.
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

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