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Friday, June 17, 2011

China Boldly Going where We went 50 Years Ago- THORIUM MOLTEN SALT REACTORS

The Chinese Academy of Sciences announced that it will finance the development of a programme to develop a Thorium Fuelled Molten Salt Reactor (TFMSR). This is first of four “strategic leader in science and technology projects” that the Chinese Academy of Science will be supporting.
The Head of the Chinese TFMSR programme is Dr Jiang Mianheng, Graduate of Drexel University, with a PhD in electrical engineering. His father Jiang Zemin, was the former President of the People's Republic of China from 1993 to 2003. This gives an indication of the importance .....
   Indeed they are not playing around. Thorium is 4 times more common on Earth than uranium, though there is no shortage of either. Molten salt reactors are safer, if that is a consideration. The molten salts considered for MSRs are chemically stable. They do not react rapidly with moisture or air. Their chemical inertness precludes accidents that are due to chemical interaction. There is no fire hazard or explosion hazard. They are also compatible and are non-corrosive with respect to suitable structural materials. The experience with the MSRE has shown that high-nickel alloys, combined with adequate oxidation potential balancing of the salt, can result in low corrosion of the structural materials.

The molten salts considered for the MSR are stable to high temperatures at low pressures. This feature allows for high efficiency with no extreme safety demands from the structure materials. Being a liquid system at low-pressure eliminates the storage of potential energy or other risk of an energetic burst or explosion.
   The Russsian attitude is equally sane
The use of nuclear energy is vital for the future development of the world economy, the head of Russia's state nuclear agency said Monday in an impassioned defence of atomic power.

Sergei Kiriyenko, the head of Rosatom, described nuclear energy as a "locomotive" of development
and certainly true as our present economic meltdown proves.

So what is the western attitude. Well we actually had one in the 1960s which proved itself as designed
The broadest and perhaps most important conclusion from the MSRE experience was that a molten salt fueled reactor concept was viable. It ran for considerable periods of time, yielding valuable information, and maintenance was accomplished safely and without excessive delay

So obviously it was closed down , further development suppressed and 50 years later the Chinese are going to overtake us. And some people wonder why we are in recession.

So what is the British attitude. Funny you should ask
...although the Coalition Government continues to pour subsidies worth many millions (should be 10s of billions) of pounds into wind power, which, as Live revealed earlier this year, produces at best intermittent energy with potential environmental costs, it has so far decided to do nothing about thorium except to maintain a ‘watching brief’.
The reason is that a review last year by the Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir John Beddington, concluded that thorium research shouldn’t be a priority, as ‘development of the appropriate technology would appear to be some way into the future’.

That could be described as a depressingly circular argument: if the scientists aren’t funded to pursue the research and development, the technology will indeed remain in the future. Meanwhile, the reasons for Sir John’s pessimistic assessment seem baffling.

In a letter to Cywinski, he admitted the science behind thorium reactors was ‘well based’, and said the main reason he couldn’t recommend government support was because there had never been research on how to reprocess thorium fuel ‘on an industrial scale’.
  We shouldn't do any research purely because we haven't done ant research. Beddington clearly knows what lies he has to tell to keep his job as "Government Chief Science Advisor". and is willing to tell them. Of course such reactors won't always remain in the future. Soon they will be in China.The responsibility for the economic, scientific and cultural failure of Britain and the western countries generally lies entirely with the treasonous politicians, bureaucrats, Luddite activists and the corrupt MSM "reporters" who propagandise for them and censor everybody else..
  And as further proof that the "environmentalists" scare stories have nothing whatsoever to do with real safety issues see these quotes that show the agenda is entirely Luddite unconcerned about human survival.. Compare and contrast the zero deaths at Fukushima and 56 in Chernobyl with the 33 from the e coli outbreak that came from a German organic farm. If their hysteria were sincere or even not wholly dishonest they would now be putting more than 33 times as much effort ito closing organic farms. They aren't.
Aircraft Reactor Experiment building at ORNL, it was later retrofitted for the MSRE1960s reactor site

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

M74 Extension - Claimed "Under Budget" at 4 Times the Original Budget

  Whatever we think of Scotland's politicians competence about doing things they appear to have a rare skill at ensuring favourable coverage.
   Look at the coverage for the new 5 mile M74 extension bypassing the city centre.
Major public project ahead of schedule and under budget

SCOTLAND'S most expensive new road is expected to cost £20 million less than expected when it opens in two weeks, the Scottish Government has said.

Infrastructure and capital investment secretary Alex Neil said the saving on the five-mile M74 extension in Glasgow was "clear evidence of our robust and effective management of major projects".

The £15m-£20m saving on the £445m construction contract amounts to some 4.5 per cent of the total, although the total cost of the project is £692m, which includes buying land.
Mr Neil said building work was running eight months ahead of schedule, although the overall project is running years late...
Mr Neil said: "The M74 completion is the largest infrastructure project on the ground in Scotland and it's opening eight months early and between £15m and £20m under budget.

"This will mean significant savings for Scottish taxpayers and drivers will be able to enjoy the benefits of this crucial piece of infrastructure several months ahead of schedule.

"This is clear evidence of our robust and effective management of major projects such as this. Our record of investment in transport infrastructure over the past four years has provided a much needed boost for the construction sector and supported tens of thousands of jobs."
Only at the end of the article is it mentioned that
"A month after Holyrood opened in 1999, Labour were saying this road could be built for a fraction of the current cost, but in reality it has cost almost £3,000 per centimetre of Tarmac laid, and opened 12 years after that optimistic spin.
In fact the original promised cost was £177 million.They paid out far more than that (£247 million) for the land alone.

So how does this compare with other motorways?
request under the Freedom of Information Act for "the average cost of building one km of motorway (in lowlands) in Great Britain".

I can confirm that the current costs were published in Hansard in March 2007, and the information is as follows:

2005/2006 Cost per lane (km) in real terms for motorways: £6.8m

2005/2006 Cost per lane (km) in real terms for a dual carriageway: £4.6m
  So even with inflation £138 million per mile looks a little high, in fact 10 times what it should be. Despite the Green's objecting to it on cost terms I suspect a substantial part of that cost overrun is due, not to real building costs, but to placating the Greens with "Inquiries" and hold ups.

   Some time ago when I proposed the Scottish Tunnels Project one possiblity was
 Glasgow Motorway Extention - The present above ground proposal is costed at £500 million (then) apparrently relocting costs & because some of the ground is said to be polluted by chrome. Obviously a tunnel with bypass outlets would be far cheaper & would not cause the pollution problems opponents claim to be motivated by.
  No reason was ever given for rejecting this but if we compare the cost per km of the Norwegian tunnel system which averages around £4 million per 2 lane tunnel km the equivalent for 2 lanes of 4 lane motorway,covering 8 km would have been £128 million. This is half of what the Scottish government paid for the land alone (which would not have been needed if it was a tunnel).

    If projects of this nature have already been done (and they have cut over 750 km of tunnels in Norway over the last 20 years) then it cannot be denied that it is possible to do it. Norway has less of an engineering tradition than us but if all that is necessary is to hire them to do such things then lets hire them. Actually I suspect the problems are more political than engineering, so lets sell them our politicians instead.

    Would it not be better to come in marginally over budget, with a budget of £128 million, than to boast of being marginallt  under a budget of £692 million.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Library of News and Pictures about Yugoslavia Censored by our Lamestream Media

  I am very pleased to be able to introduce Andrej Pavlovic's new blog.
Yugoslav Affairs
I recently commended the regular newsletter he produces collating news stories about what went on and is still going on in former Yugoslavia. He is now making this permanently available on blog and there is a lot of it for news that we never see "officially".

  All stuff that could hardly be more totally censored by the Anglo-American media if every single journalist were loyally under Stalinist control. How that is possible if they aren't all entirely corrupt is something I have yet to see an explanation for.

   As I said Andrej has been collating these for some time but now that he is also listing them on his own blog I expect him to, fairly quickly, build up a library of information, links and photographs

which is otherwise not available to most westerners. I expect his blogspot search facility to be widely used, even by journalists should there turn out to be some with integrity. These are the articles he has put up in just a few days:

KOSOVO: Trial in Klecka massacre case begins

CROATIA: War Crimes against Serbs- Wartime Assista...

Modern Tokyo Times: Vichy Serbia Sends War Hero To...

Former KLA members go on war crimes trial

KOSOVO: Church in Smodreza turned into public toil...

Swans Commentary » Srebrenica, Mon Amour - An...

KOSOVO: Frequent looting of Serb churches in vicin...

KOSOVO: Two individuals arrested over stoning of b...

Voltaire Network: Ratko Mladic and the Pandora's b...



Republican Riot: Roasting Mladic

Holocaust survivors denounce pope's Croatia statem...

Croatia moves towards finalising EU entry talks

General Mladic: The Facts

Witness tells UN court he was forced to lie about ...

Bundeswehr slammed for children's 'Mitrovica' war ...

Harvard Researcher: ‘Vatican helped Nazis evade co...

Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey - how EU makes Serbia ble...

1986 ethnic composition of Yugoslavia

How many of these have been you seen or will you see reported by the BBC/ITN or Scotsman/Herald or any equivalent in your neighbourhood?

Andrej has done a service not only to Serbia but to everybody who believes in freedom of information.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Recent Reading

Palin and Romney seem the only real contenders in the Republican Presidential race - and Palin hasn't yet declared herself a candidate.

Ann Coulter “I can usually tell after a speech what the average SAT scores are, because contrary to my prejudice, at the good colleges they do not heckle, they do not throw food, they usually do not have stupid signs outside; they want to beat you in question and answer,”

Proposed China/South Korea/Japan free trade area - very hopeful because Which deal North Korea out of the position of Chinese ally & signals to NK's officers that China will be happy when Kim dies, of natural causes or lead poisoning, and they can join the free trade area with SK.

Politically China also gains by not being associated with a distasteful ally whom they only supported because SK was seen as a US satellite. The US gains by not having to stay and defend SK.

On the other hand North Korea has noticed that western promises to Gaddafi, Saddam, Yugoslavia

leading to them giving up or not producing WMDs proved untrustworthy

On Lord Thomas Macaulay, and his dictum: "A democracy cannot survive as a permanent form of government. It can last only until its citizens discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury".

Israel arms for cyberwar for cyberwar and indeed biological warfare it is probably at least as easy for small nations to defend themselves than for large ones because there are fewer entry points and connections. This may be important in the future.
Pseudoscience - Wikipedia article about phrenology, homeopathy etc. In normal wikipedia style it does not mention global warming as a pseudoscience but it is clear it ticks all the same boxes.
Media "experts" The result was a collection of more than 27,000 forecasts whose veracity was then checked over the following years. The outcome, published in 2005, was salutary. It showed that the typical expert did not perform significantly better than random guessing...
Those who did badly did not like getting bogged down in complexities, or weighing up the evidence from a variety of sources. Instead, they had a habit of making predictions that complied with some grand, overarching thesis. And having made their predictions, they were - ironically enough - strikingly confident about them.

A grand thesis, simple views, confidence ... as Gardner points out, that's pretty much a thumbnail sketch of the perfect media pundit.

Yet according to Prof Tetlock's research, those are precisely the characteristics of experts whose predictions are worse than random guessing.

And that, in turn, suggests that the very fact a pundit makes regular media appearances means we can ignore his or her predictions.

intelligence made a difference in gross domestic product. For each one-point increase in a country’s average IQ, the per capita GDP was $229 higher. It made an even bigger difference if the smartest 5 percent of the population got smarter; for every additional IQ point in that group, a country’s per capita GDP was $468 higher. Of course which is cause and which effect or how much one reinforces the other is pretty much guesswork. I would like to think that it is mainly effect - that rich countries provide more education and make people smarter.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

7 Questions for Warmists - Professor Fred Singer Comments

  I have received this from Professor Fred Singer, head of SEPP, the original warming sceptic newsletter which you can and should get here. The term "world authority" fits him well. It is a reply to previous discussion with Professor Wolf on my 7 questions for warming alarmists.

Since I have been copied to, I feel I should add my comments -- as they relate to climate science.

1. On the global temp record:

The 1910-40 warming is genuine and caused by natural factors. I am aware of only one analysis that ascribes it to human causes -- and though published in Science and quoted by IPCC, it is likely incorrect

The 1979-97 surface warming is contradicted by many independent pieces of evidence (I count at least six) and is likely close to zero

Not sure if Eric agrees, but I might convince him

5. On geo-engineering:

I am in general agreement with Eric but would add;

1. Injection of sulfate particles into the stratosphere would have undesirable consequences for ozone
2. I question the need or efficacy of geo-engineering but see no harm in modest funding of studies

Best        Fred

  I am going to stick my neck out, in such eminent company, by saying something more about geo-engineering. I very much agree about it's present efficacy. Cooling the planet before being absolutely certain that we are experiencing a dangerous degree of warming would not only be unnecessary but damaging and conceivably even catastrophic since previous ice ages suggests that there may be positive feedback for cooling. However I think it is important that any reasonable assessment shows it is possible in extremis I am glad we know that possibility exists - this is not the "precautionary principle" simply a sensible engineering "belt and braces" attitude.The fact that sulphate particles would be inexpensive and going nuclear have a net negative cost gives a baseline to assess any alarmist proposals against.
   The fact that such particles worked to create "years without a summer following the volcanic eruptions of Krakatoa 1883, Tambora 1815 and Laki 1783-5 show that sulphate would work. I also think they show that the effects on ozone would not cause catastrophe at ground level.
   In the long term the best place to geo-engineer Earth from is space, where both cooling and warming could be done. This will be practical when we have a spacegoing civilisation at little extra cost. Building "space solar power, we would build a Lunar colony on weekends and third shifts ...And solving global warming, if it actually ever turns out to be a problem, by building tinfoil parasols on bank holidays."

   If the alleged believers in global warming catastrophe, which do not include Professor Wolff, really did believe it the rational thing would be for them to promote nuclear power and space industrialisation.

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