Nojay

Nojay

  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    It's kind of interesting... there's still a lot of folks who make steam trains or electric traction trains in various track gauges, the traditional "model" engineering hobbyists but there's been an explosion of lower-priced versions of higher-end technology like laser...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    There's a point if you get deeply into making stuff where where you become a sort-of Second-Stage Lensman, building or owning tools to make tools. It's said that someone with a lathe or a mill spends most of their time...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    Big River and Fleabay sell branded (Dormer, Facom) taps and dies at reasonable prices but I don't know what the price is like where you live. There's also the Chinese dropshippers assuming you're willing to take the risk of getting...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    The rear derailleur mount on a bicycle is M10x1, Yep, it's one of the special cases, a large-diameter bolt fitted into a thin plate so the fine pitch is necessary to provide sufficient engagement in the plate otherwise it would...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    I've been pulling a lot of dead hard drives apart recently, made by American-owned companies but usually assembled in far-off cheap-labour factories. Most of the fasteners in these drives are things like #4-40 UNF and the like rather than sensible...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    Ummm, no. Whitworth thread profile is 55 degrees, chosen back in the day when cast iron and wrought iron were the normal materials used in engineering with steel reserved for special purposes. BA (British Association) thread angle is even narrower...
  • Commented on The dog ate my homework
    See this is where my ingrained bloodymindedness would kick in. I'd go "right, you want something that looks like it came off a typewriter, you can have something that looks that way because it came off something that works like...
  • Commented on And the Rabid Nazi Raccoons shall inherit the Earth
    Many adults in the UK (and the US) would have things of value other than cash money that could be converted into cash reasonably quickly if they really needed it -- a car, a business, a mortgage, a TV etc....
  • Commented on And the Rabid Nazi Raccoons shall inherit the Earth
    I recall seeing some development work and a proof-of-concept of a laser-boosted solid-fuel rocket system but it never seemed to go anywhere, at least not publicly. It used a conventional solid-fuel rocket with an Isp of about 240-250 which launched...
  • Commented on And the Rabid Nazi Raccoons shall inherit the Earth
    We can't build large really kickass lasers but we can build lots of lower-powered ones and they could have the same effect on worrisome space rocks. Being hit by the beams from a thousand 100kW lasers spread over multiple site...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Ferrous smelting lends itself very well to off-peak energy usage, especially in large-batch processing. I used to carry out IT support for a factory that made paper-making machinery, casting single-piece cast iron rolls as big as 160 tonnes at a...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Thermal desalinisation done economically requires high temperatures. The Arab countries doing desalinisation are burning gas to provide the process heat and power. Solar desalinisation can be done but the efficiency is piss-poor. Part of the reason the UAE is building...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    I never said they're perfect. They just don't slaughter people like the alternative, coal....
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    There have been major improvements in the safety of existing and new-build reactors even though they were incredibly safe to start with compared to the alternatives. There is no possible level of reactor safety that you will accept, basically. This...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Watts Bar 2 was completed about a year ago after being mothballed back in the 90s and is now generating 1100MW of non-fossil-carbon electricity. Summer and Vogtle are each getting a pair of new-build AP-1000 reactors, completion due about 2020...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Fukushima Daiichi actually had tsunami defences, a lot better than the port city of Sendai further north where a few thousand people were killed when it was inundated. The inadequacy of those defences has never been questioned in part because...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Coal is like a layer of Euro bills just lying in the ground, waiting to be dug up and shoveled into someone's bank account (the same applies to oil and gas, of course). Most coal mining today is surface-based, large...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Renewables can't be rolled out fast enough to replace coal. Germany is proof of this, despite a nationwide effort and willingness to spend hundreds of billions of Euros on solar and wind and garbage-burning plants their consumption of coal has...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    nuclear waste eating reactor concept There are a lot of Powerpoint presentations about waste-eaters. Nobody is bending metal or pouring concrete on one....
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    The deep borehole projects being mooted are going four or five kilometres down, way way WAY deeper than oil and gas bores or fracking drills, way below any water tables and deep into homogenous rock. As for U235 waste products,...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    The UCS grew out of the science community's backlash against nuclear weapons programs hence their Doomsday Clock. In the late 1940s and early 50s there was an effort made to dramatise the effects of radiation on biological systems, plants and...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Union of Concerned Scientists has always had a reflexive hate on for civil nuclear power so I tend to discount them automatically. They're not quite as bad as fairewinds and enenews though. A comparable list of carbon-energy accidents/incidents/close calls would...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    There are a number of interesting isotopes in "waste" but generally if more are needed then it's easy (too easy, perhaps) to make more where we can get at them. The short-lived "hot" isotopes of most interest would all be...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    There's work going on to investigate using deep boreholes (4 to 5 km deep) for nuclear waste disposal, specifically spent radioactive sources used in industry and medicine; it's cheaper for concentrated waste as there's no tunneling infrastructure required and it's...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Instead the new reactor design space has been constrained by the desire to bodge it on top of an underlying supply and service infrastructure originally intended to extract and securely stockpile plutonium from (relatively) non-hazardous materials. The only production-ready...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    Yup, America's deal drove a cart and horses through the NPT principles that anyone who wants to import civilian nuclear power technology and materials has to open their entire nuclear industry up for inspection so that none of the imports...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    So because existing tested operational nuclear reactor designs are only super-mega-safe and not ultra-super-mega-safe[1] you're fine with not replacing the world's coal-fired power stations with off-the-shelf reactors. That's nice. Germany is decommissioning its non-polluting nuclear power fleet while maintaining its...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    India has a problem in that they're not signatories to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and this restricts their access to world markets for nuclear technology and materials. They don't have a lot of uranium natively hence their interest in thorium...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    The waste produced by a typical 1GW nuclear power reactor in a year consists of about a tonne of highly-radioactive material that can be safely sequestered long term by deep geological burial. The Finns are starting to dig a deep...
  • Commented on "You're only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!" 2017 continued.
    You could say the same thing about the carbon industry -- "the human institutions we trust to manage it are absolutely terrible, and we need better" but that would put up prices for energy for everyone and compared to that...
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