Using Polywell to burn suger cane... huh?

If polywell fusion is developed, in what ways will the world change for better or worse? Discuss.

Moderators: tonybarry, MSimon

93143
Posts: 1131
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:51 pm

Postby 93143 » Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:47 am

MSimon wrote:Let me add that the CO2 hysteria is bunk.


I'm down with that.

Lots of people aren't, however, and on the off chance that it IS a problem, it would be nice to solve peak oil and CO2 in one shot, without changing our automotive technology or distribution system. If Polywell doesn't work, we aren't screwed; we just have to be smart about stuff. I think elevator/solar is a better bet than ITER, and it doesn't put the squeeze on our supply of lithium...

BSPhysics
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:17 am

Postby BSPhysics » Fri Feb 15, 2008 2:39 am

If battery technology keeps improving in the next decade as well as the last, we'll see an eventual convergence over to electric vehicles. This will eliminate the need for all of this E85, biodiesel bunk. I have moral reservations about using food for fuel anyway. Also, the questions about H2 storage, safety, and infrastructure go away quickly when people are driving cars with 300+ mile electric ranges. We aren't there yet but it won't be long.

The Chevy Volt, Toyota and Honda Plug In Hybrids, and the Tesla Roadster (plus many others) are showing that nanotech based batteries and supercapacitors may be good enough. Fusion reactors + electric cars sounds like a perfect marriage.


BS

Roger
Posts: 788
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 2:03 am
Location: Metro NY

Postby Roger » Fri Feb 15, 2008 2:48 am

BSPhysics wrote: biodiesel bunk.


IIRC, Truckers can now drive the length of I-95 on the east coast of the US, and buy only biodiesel . Taking the fat outta a fryer and driving with it is a good thing, albeit a niche market.
I like the p-B11 resonance peak at 50 KV acceleration. In2 years we'll know.

MSimon
Posts: 14331
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:05 am

Roger wrote:MSimon, who said those cars need to be Hybrids ? Gee dude sometimes it seems like your brain just freezes in place. Time for a defrag and a restart.

I seriously doubt CPU's for Hybrids will be an issue in 2020 or even 2050.


Area for CPUs will not be a problem. Area for Power Semiconductors is not a problem if we have ramp up time. If our whole fleet went hybrid or electric only tomorrow, there would not be enough power semiconductor mfg. capacity.

My point is that change takes time - even if you know exactly what you want to do - if you don't know exactly what you want to do it takes longer.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

Keegan
Posts: 206
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2007 6:29 am
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Postby Keegan » Fri Feb 15, 2008 6:23 am

MSimon wrote:Typical thinking process: if we can put a man on the moon why can't everyone buy a moon excursion ticket for a buck ninety-eight


Haha, Simon thinks they put a man on the moon......

oh j/k....... :D

But seriously a few people mentioned space elevators. I am a hug fan of them but i cant see them happening anytime soon. I am confident you will see a working polywell before you see a space elevator. The cable/tethers are many decades away. One of my other interests is man made diamond. We can currently grow optical grade diamond at 0.5mm a day over small areas. I really believed that a pure diamond tether would make a space elevator tangible. But recent calculation show that even if we could make a single diamond tether 1000's of kilometers long, the sp3 carbon bond (the strongest bond there is.) is still 10's of Gigapascals in tensile strength too low to make space elevator a reality.

What a shame. Space elevator to LEO and Polywell powered Ion Drive to Mars and beyond. It was a lovely thought tho.

BSPhysics wrote:The Chevy Volt, Toyota and Honda Plug In Hybrids, and the Tesla Roadster (plus many others) are showing that nanotech based batteries and supercapacitors may be good enough. Fusion reactors + electric cars sounds like a perfect marriage.


^ I couldn't agree more. 100% The main thing that has been holding electric cars up for a while now has been battery technology. One risked having batteries that would be outdated by the time mass produced models could roll off the floor. They have been working on it for a while and L ion is just starting to get good. I read that your could see off the shelf <$5000 battery packs in 5 years.

So yeah I want my polywell fusion powered plug in Ariel Atom please *drools*
Purity is Power

seedload
Posts: 1062
Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 8:16 pm

Postby seedload » Fri Feb 15, 2008 4:52 pm

MSimon wrote:Let me add that the CO2 hysteria is bunk.

It didn't cause the warming spell we have had and it will not protect us from the little ice age we currently appear to be headed for.


Hold on. You don't know that. Just as those claiming that global warming will destroy the world don't know either. The Earth is a huge dynamic system which will react to change in an indeterminable manner. The complexity of the system makes it very very difficult to acurately predict what will happen. It's that simple. We don't know what will happen if we keep dumping "greenhouse gases" into the air. Doomsdayists and dont-worry-about-it-ists are equally in the dark as to what will actually happen.

I personally believe that its probably not that big a deal. There are feedback mechanisms that will eventually kick in and equalize everything. But, it might be pretty nasty in the mean time. Who knows?

The KISS approach is to not take the chance that we might screw it up. We know that the Earth carried on for many hundreds of millions of years without us dumping huge amounts of CO2 into the air. So, we are pretty well assured that barring some unprecidented cosmic event, it will continue to do so for the forseeable future if we stay out of it. We should strive to minimize our footprint within the system.

We had to burn stuff to get to this technological level. Now, let's get back to letting the Earth run itself.

Treehuggers and Fusion nuts unite!

Helius
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:48 pm
Location: Syracuse, New York

Re: Using Polywell to burn suger cane... huh?

Postby Helius » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:28 pm

scareduck wrote:One way to store hydrogen that works very well is to put it at the end of long-chain carbon molecules -- for instance, octane, cetane, etc. That is, the common components of gasoline and diesel fuel. These are much more easily transportable than hydrogen gas.


Exactly. hydrogenated biomass to make methane, ethane, propane butane, the napthas heptane and Octane. How hard could it be? If the carbon came from biomass,(and hydrogen from nukes, it's gotta be do-able. That'd be "carbon neutral" too.

93143
Posts: 1131
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2007 7:51 pm

Postby 93143 » Fri Feb 15, 2008 5:49 pm

I'm dubious about biomass. It requires either waste streams that match or exceed our liquid fuel requirements over an indefinite period of time, or farming wasted on fuel production.

If it's possible to extract CO2 straight from the air industrially and make it into liquid fuel (I'm pretty sure it is), and if the energy required to do this is readily available (we're hopeful; that's why we're on this forum), then there's no point wasting farmland to accomplish something a factory can do better.

Waste stream processing is a pain for a variety of reasons, but it's going to have to happen anyway, and it could meet some of our fuel demand. I doubt it will handle all of it.

BSPhysics
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:17 am

Postby BSPhysics » Fri Feb 15, 2008 7:44 pm

"Taking the fat outta a fryer and driving with it is a good thing, albeit a niche market."

Roger, I agree and I may have misrepresented my thought with the word "bunk." Niche market is the the key. Energy independence and improving the environment cannot be achieved by biofuels. The fundamental point I'm trying to make is that electric cars and tomorrow's batteries may be superior to the internal combustion engine no matter what fuel we use. Those who look to biofuels as the answer are looking down a dead end. EV's will simply be better in almost all markets. I'm crossing my fingers anyway.

BS

MSimon
Posts: 14331
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:24 pm

BSPhysics wrote:"Taking the fat outta a fryer and driving with it is a good thing, albeit a niche market."

Roger, I agree and I may have misrepresented my thought with the word "bunk." Niche market is the the key. Energy independence and improving the environment cannot be achieved by biofuels. The fundamental point I'm trying to make is that electric cars and tomorrow's batteries may be superior to the internal combustion engine no matter what fuel we use. Those who look to biofuels as the answer are looking down a dead end. EV's will simply be better in almost all markets. I'm crossing my fingers anyway.

BS


The problem is charging time vs wire size. Delivering 100 Kwh of energy in 5 minutes or less is going to be a trick. Charging 5 autos at once will be an even bigger trick.

Maybe you do something like on site flywheel storage.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

scareduck
Posts: 552
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2007 5:03 am

Postby scareduck » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:52 pm

If EEStor has really figured out the wrinkles of ultracaps, you're talking a megavolt feed. Something like that would have to be dealt with at a the electrical equivalent of a filling station -- no way do you put that into peoples' homes.

MSimon
Posts: 14331
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:55 pm

scareduck wrote:If EEStor has really figured out the wrinkles of ultracaps, you're talking a megavolt feed. Something like that would have to be dealt with at a the electrical equivalent of a filling station -- no way do you put that into peoples' homes.

Odds are EEStor is learning that you can't beat dielectric saturation. At least not as easily as they hoped.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

scareduck
Posts: 552
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2007 5:03 am

Postby scareduck » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:41 am

MSimon wrote:Odds are EEStor is learning that you can't beat dielectric saturation. At least not as easily as they hoped.

Actually, my understanding is that the problem is barium titanate is a linear dielectric, rather than nonlinear (energy storage proportional to 1/v rather than 1/v^2).

BSPhysics
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:17 am

Postby BSPhysics » Sat Feb 16, 2008 3:47 am

It would be interesting to see what John Q. Public would consider "good enough" when balancing range, cost, and charge time for EV's. Tesla Motors advertises that battery technology is improving at an 8% clip per year. That is significant. By 2020, 500 mile ranges and 1.5 hour recharge times are possible at that rate. I'm not sure anyone knows the limit to the exponential growth before it starts to flatten but I'd bet $100 battery tech meets large scale consumer demand before the ceiling hits.

If Polywell's are in operation by then, a "fill up" would cost about $0.50.


BS

Helius
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2007 9:48 pm
Location: Syracuse, New York

Postby Helius » Sat Feb 16, 2008 1:18 pm

Roger wrote:
BSPhysics wrote: biodiesel bunk.


IIRC, Truckers can now drive the length of I-95 on the east coast of the US, and buy only biodiesel . Taking the fat outta a fryer and driving with it is a good thing, albeit a niche market.


What ratio do you need? Y'know McDonalds : Automobile.


Return to “Implications”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests