October 14, 2008

You know what else would be bad?

Not being able to feed my children because gasoline is too fucking expensive.

I know that there are a large number of people who are not only okay with high gas prices, they wish that prices would spike up around $10 a gallon. To those people I offer the following helpful advice: please go fuck yourself before sticking your head in the over. Seriously. High fuel costs equals higher food costs, higher heating/cooling costs, higher clothing costs, higher pretty much everything unless you're a complete dunderhead. You might be okay with paying a buttload for everything, but I, not being rich, am most decidedly not.

You think that pain drives research into new technologies? That makes you stupid. Sure, it provides a little impetus, but if people are worried about heating/cooling their homes and feeding their families, they aren't going to spend a lot of time and money on vaporware. That includes businesses. Higher energy costs mean higher costs of doing business which means, usually, that some divisions/departments get cut. Having worked in R&D before, I can tell you that research divisions are not the most directly profitable sections of a company. Until or unless something pays off, they are usually a drain on resources.

For the record, I would love for some new energy technology to be created. However, it has to be (a) proven, (b) scalable (you keep ignoring that, don't you?), (c) affordable and (d) available 24x7 because things need to run when it's dark outside. If the technology doesn't meet those criteria, then it's worthless.

One other thing: you people who tout electric cars have really got to figure out where all that electricity is going to come from to charge the batteries, because I really want to know. Maybe from the unicorns that Obama will give us all, but I'm not really counting on that. Besides, unicorns taste like chicken.

Link via the Instamonster.

Posted by Physics Geek at October 14, 2008 01:39 PM | TrackBack StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!

Fusion is the answer :) that's why I work on it. And that's why I ended up with your blog in my feed :) Although I never actually read anything related to physics in your entries yet, I still enjoy them.

Posted by: KK at October 14, 2008 03:29 PM

Well, I could write about general relativity, or graduate E&M, or condensed matter physics. The reality, though, is that my audience, already small, would shrivel into a singularity.

Once upon a time, I did post Shroedinger's time dependent equation, but I don't think it was my most well received blog entry, mainly because most people went WTF?!.

Fusion, eh? Do you work on the Polywell fusor, or some of the low temperature related branches of research? I actually try to keep up with that research because it's always interested me. I am waiting for something to be proven as scalable so that we can engineer the heck out of some power plants. In the interim, I'll continue working on the G3+ fission reactors.

Posted by: physics geek at October 15, 2008 07:13 AM

I work in plasma theory in a stellarator.

If you are interested in fusion power plants (only an idea yet) you should read about ITER (giant toroidal fusion chamber) and DEMO (post-ITER "plant").

There's also an inertial confinement fusion project to be possibly built in 2010. It's called HiPER (gotta love those acronyms).

Good luck with fission. I'll stick with fusion ;)

Posted by: KK at October 15, 2008 09:35 AM