Friday, June 19, 2009

Advertisements for debate

Looks like the Heartland Institute is trying to do some media awareness. Good adverts, but will the politicians and mainstream pay any attention? Probably not. Too many vested interests with an eye on the 'carbon' dollar out there for that.

Hat tip to A Dog named Kyoto.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

What would happen......

Just idle musing you understand; but I wonder what would happen if you built eight, (or six, or four) Tokamak type devices and arranged them standing on their sides in a circle, with one side of each donut shaped device cut so that the plasma torus developed within each devices circular magnetic field intersected in a central magnetic 'pinch' chamber. Like in the two diagrams below.

Given that if the right conditions are created, Nuclear Fusion can and has been achieved within Tokamak type devices, but not enough to match the power input; if the plasma contained within each of the six toroids of plasma was run up to near fusion temperatures, by running six plasma streams together at a central point in a open ended 'pinch' type magnetic containment chamber, would that create conditions of heat and pressure sufficient within said magnetic 'pinch' chamber to induce a near-continuous Nuclear Fusion reaction without quite such a massive amount of initial energy input as ITER or other similar projects?

Supposing that the right hydrogen / deuterium fuel mix is injected into the eight (or six, or four) plasma toroids the rest is down to creating the conditions where such a reaction will make place. Heat, pressure, velocity, and leave the rest to the laws of Physics.

Of course my idea could be complete rubbish, but given what I've read recently, it sounds just as likely than some of the other concepts I've read about. In the words of Lewis Carrol's White Queen "If you can believe six impossible things before breakfast."

Back to Manuscript revision.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Cloud Mystery

I don't know about anyone else, but I find a lot of synergy with this clip;

I think Henrik Svensmark's theory has legs because it does show a link between cloud formation and cosmic rays which has been public since Wilson's work on cloud formation in the early 1900's. I find myself agreeing with most of the content for the following reasons;
  1. The 'greenhouse effect' of water vapour makes the minimal effect of CO2 look positively ineffectual.
  2. The Sun is a variable star and is apparently heading into a prolonged minima.
  3. Svensmark is experimentally demonstrating his postulation, not just using speculative computer models and 'adjusted' data which do not accurately reflect reality.

Interesting stuff. Certainly more credible than the CO2 lobby's "We can't think of anything else it might be".

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Misleading headline

As an occasional big game fisherman who has handled live sharks of eighty pounds and upwards during a tag and release programme; could I make the suggestion that any one (Or at least their executors) who reads and acts on the following headline; "Sharks can be cuddled like dolphins, say scientists" should sue the media outlet responsible in the case of injury or death whilst trying to mishandle a shark.

Whilst it is true that there is little chance of injury whilst handling some of the smaller species, up to and including the tropical Zebra Shark, there is a significant risk factor associated with trying to anthropomorphise some of the larger species. Sharks are like any other wild creature, and react badly to being crowded by humans. They have a tendency to bite, and even small to moderate sized specimens of the Blue Shark (Prionace Glauca) have teeth resembling that of a circular saw. I've seen said teeth close to, you won't catch me trying to get all Walt Disney with them. Christ on a bike! Some people do make misleading statements.