Daniel Duffy

Daniel Duffy

  • Commented on The internet of decay
    I see the internet of things (along with uplifting via genetic engineering) ushering in a future where we will all live in a horror/fantasy/Disney movie. A world with sentient magic mirrors that evaluate your physical health parameters and let you...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    As for fracking chemicals: http://www.chemservice.com/news/2014/11/surfactants-from-fracking-may-not-be-as-harmful-as-previously-thought/ One team of scientists from the University of Colorado Boulder decided to study the surfactants that are used in fracking fluids. They concluded that these organic chemicals are no more harmful than what is already...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    "Because earthquake clusters and contaminated groundwater are only problems for people who live in rural areas, and how common are they?" Actually they can occur in cities as well. The mayor of Youngstown, Ohio was bounced out of his bed...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    An inverter's operating power coincides with its voltage. For example a 100 watt inverter will function at 12 to 48 volts. As a rule of thumb, inverter efficiency increases with power output. At low current inverter efficiency can fall below...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    I understand and appreciate your arguments vis CNG storage tank safety. 3,600 psi storage pressure requires diligent design and retrofit of the converted engine. Was it a retrofitted CNG/diesel flex fuel engine? Was it the actual tank that ruptured or...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    "Now" can last for thousands of years - turning the Golden age of Methane into a true millennia - especially if the Japanese succeed in extracting useable amounts of methane from frozen clathrate deposits on the ocean floors: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/12/25/business/economy-business/methane-hydrate-extracted-sea-japan/ I...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    So welcome to the Golden Age of Methane. http://foresternetwork.com/weekly/energy-storage-solutions-weekly/innovation-at-the-pump/ As The Economist put it, “America’s unexpected, and most welcome, bonanza of natural gas from its vast shale deposits seems to be doing as much to reduce pollution as many of...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    Environmentally, solar is not pristine either. The destroyed habitat alone makes PV a bad environmental choice. The PV cells themselves are doped with toxic materials. Until recently, PV meant flat-panel cells and modules. While this allows for some saving in...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    Speaking of inefficiency, let's take or example the Neuhardengberg solar plant located near Berlin; 145 MW nominal capacity 245 hectares (0.95 square miles). First off, the nominal power sited of 145 mW is the "watt-peak", which is energy production under...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    Well this brings us to energy storage for renewables. All sorts of technological fixes are being tried: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/tech/super-battery.html ... including: Mechanical Fly Wheels (compact but expensive and can only store energy for short periods) Simple Heat Sinks (basic system heating...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    First, let's examine WHY solar energy has become so cheap, it's not for the reason you think. No doubt solar has hit a tipping point and is looking at potentially exponential growth. But this is not the result of advanced...
  • Commented on Some notes on the worst-case scenario
    What makes your nightmare dystopia scenario so fascinating and credible is that it mirrors previous historical events. The actions you describe being taken by carbon fuel companies in response to the "carbon bubble" is taken right out of the tobacco...
  • Commented on Policy change: future US visits
    There is codependency and then there is hierarchy with the wealthy and powerful hydraulic despots effectively controlling our government (see Trump's cabinet). Apparently mankind has never escaped feudalism of one kind or another, either hidden or open, whether run by...
  • Commented on Policy change: future US visits
    Still need to solve the problem of energy storage to make renewables a truly viable energy option. For now the most economical way of storing peak solar/wind power for later use when the sun goes down and the wind stops...
  • Commented on Policy change: future US visits
    If you all are looking for a Grand Unified Theory of Everything to explain what is going on in the world you won't do much better than the "carbon bubble": https://thenearlynow.com/trump-putin-and-the-pipelines-to-nowhere-742d745ce8fd#.ar2kaee50 For high-carbon industries to continue to be attractive investments,...
  • Commented on Policy change: future US visits
    Somewhere there is an alternate universe where Hillary won - and America has been rocked by dozens of Oklahoma City-like bombings staged by Right Wing militia groups. Lot's of Timothy McVie wannabees vowed that they would violently resist a Clinton...
  • Commented on Policy change: future US visits
    "As for my worst case nightmare scenario? Given the reshuffle on the National Security Council and the prominence of white supremacists and neo-nazis in this Administration I can't help wondering if the ground isn't being laid for a Reichstag Fire...
  • Commented on Things Can Only Get Better! (Part 1)
    Breakdown of the Gulf Stream. Piffle. How about a Green Sky? https://davidbrin.wordpress.com/tag/global-warming/ … but there are potential killer game changers. For example if methane hydrates under cool thermal layers in northern seas start to “blurp” out, the runaway effects of...
  • Commented on Playtime is over
    "it's that it has little or no explanatory power" It's a generational thing with approximately two generations every half century. A liberal/progressive generation rebels against the stifling constraints of their parents' conservative/reactionairy generation. Thn the libs are followed by a...
  • Commented on Playtime is over
    Like many people, I have been trying to figure out what happened this election. Why did America elect someone like Trump as president? I've gone through all of the explanations from economic insecurity of the white working class to racism...
  • Commented on Facts of Life and Death
    If future starving Britain has to plow under "huge tracts of land" to feed itself, what will it do to its renewable energy development. Theoretically the UK can supply all of its energy needs by renewable enrgy: https://www.withouthotair.com/ But you...
  • Commented on Facts of Life and Death
    Could Britain join NAFTA or have the same relationship with NAFTA that Norway has with the EU?...
  • Commented on What else can you do with a Big Dumb Booster?
    Everyon is asking "what we can do". But nobody is asking "why we should". Even if we had the capabilities of a truely reusable big dumb rocket, why should we use it? What are the economic benefits of such a...
  • Commented on Sad Trombone Exoplanet Reality Check
    Protect against impacts from interstellar dust particles at relativistic speds the same way tanks protect against armor piercing rounds: sloped armor. Take a miles long nickel/iron asteroid and reshape it into the the shape of a spike or a needle...
  • Commented on Sad Trombone Exoplanet Reality Check
    Maybe we won't have to make giant leaps to actual stars. Maybe we can take small steps to "Brown Dwarfs" (can't we come up with a cooler name, like Dark Stars?) that occupy the vast space between the stars. Who...
  • Commented on The iron law of development
    Or America circa 2016. Not all of America,just Red State America andthe decline and decay of Red America explains their desparation and devotion to a demagogue like Trump. Blue America is doing just fine thank you....
  • Commented on The iron law of development
    How about discussing an "Iron Law of Decay"? How does an advanced industrial society fail?...
  • Commented on What are you reading this summer?
    "The Water Knife" by Paolo Bacigalupi "Chinatown" meets "Cadillac Desert" and climate change. If they make a movie of this, Danny Trejo has to play Angel....
  • Commented on What are you reading this summer?
    "Ghengiz Khan and the Making of the Modern World" by Jack Weatherford. Turns out the the Mongols were the good guys,moreliberaros than conquerers. If Ghenghis is among the greatest military leaders in history, his grandson Kublai was history's greatest administrative...
  • Commented on Cyberpunk 2.0: Political economy, energy, and the future US
    With all this talk of "Cadillac Desert" and water engineering projects I'm surprised nobody has mentioned NAWAPA the "North American Water and Power Alliance" - a massive restructuring of all of North America's water systems. http://a-place-to-stand.blogspot.co.uk/2008/11/vig-engineering-23-greening-of-america.html And other macro water...
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