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  • #3922
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    Aeronaut wrote:

    The FF reactor and seems to be an effective source of lower level heat. Therefore we do not need perfection, which is a purely mathematical concept, in order to benefit real people with real problems.

    I know of the X-Scan plans, but where do you see info that it “is already being used as an X-ray generator”?
    There’s a homepage link to a news story about a Japanese group that’s interested in X-ray generators achieving high energy transfer efficiencies.
    Where’s the link?

    Here’s a very interesting sample of a Press Release blending news and PR:

    http://www.teslamotors.com/media/press_room.php?id=1347

    #3939
    AvatarAeronaut
    Member

    Here’s the link, Brian. Had to break down and use the site’s search engine. https://focusfusion.pmhclients.com/index.php/site/article/singapore_dpf_group_demonstrates_high_efficiency/

    #5743
    Avatarnobillys
    Member

    Thanks for the press release. But, my computer is not loading it =/

    Hey I would like to go for the X-Fusion Prize though πŸ™‚

    #6220
    Avatarvansig
    Member

    Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    The push toward smart grids will help get these online faster, same as it helps any other company producing small generators. So the only major hurdle, as I see it, is the social one: that mindset of “nuclear = bad” in the eyes of the public.

    The public is conditioned to believe that any power generation must be massive, expensive, polluting and dangerous. The pitch should be able to show that all of these are misconceptions. But without entering the “too good to be true” head-space.

    We should be planning threat-risk scenarios and safety demonstrations for NRC.

    Scenarios should include { fuel spills, shielding failure, improper fuel used, electrical fire, theft, sabotage, terrorist attack }, and should quantify maximum extent of damage, and maximum radiation exposure to operators and public; and should compare them to existing power generation methods.

    The safety demonstrations should simulate each of these, as well, using independent teams, role-playing their responses in live-action drill

    Brian H wrote:
    I directed Jerry Pournelle to the site. Here is an excerpt from his Dec. 29 Current Mail column:

    A little energy ‘rithmatic

    In your Dec 18 view you note, “One hundred 1,000 megawatt nuclear power plants should cost about $150 billion (the first two might cost $25 billion each, but the hundredth will be less than a billion).”

    Taking the low end of your scale, the capital cost per Watt is $1. I remind (and update) you about my own fave candidate, Focus Fusion. It has just received paltry ($1.2 million) but adequate funding to push hard for the next 2 yrs. or so to prove break-even plus with proton-Boron11 aneutronic fusion.

    At ~$250,000 per 5MW generator, that’s $0.05/Watt. Or 1/20 your best case nuclear (fission) plants. And zero waste disposal costs.
    […]

    Brian Hall

    I had some correspondence with Mr. Hall, but it’s not really relevant. Obviously I would love to have electricity at a much lower investment rate; and I know there is a lot of theory about Focus Fusion. To the best of my knowledge they haven’t actually generated any electricity with the system, and the numbers look too good to be true. Of course many things that look too good to be true turn out to be true — alas a lot more don’t.
    […]
    The following is from the June 2008 issue of Discover:

    A focus fusion reactor could be built for just $300,000, says Lerner, president of Lawrenceville Plasma Physics in New Jersey. But huge technical hurdles remain. These include increasing the density of the plasma so the fusion reaction will be more intense. (Conventional fusion experiments do not come close to the temperatures and densities needed for efficient hydrogen-boron fusion.) Still, the payoff could be huge: While mainstream fusion research programs are still decades from fruition, Lerner claims he requires just $750,000 in funding and two years of work to prove his process generates more energy than it consumes. β€œThe next experiment is aimed at achieving higher density, higher magnetic field, and higher efficiency,” he says. β€œWe believe it will succeed.”

    I wish him very well, but my experience has been that even if it works as advertised it will be a decade or more before there is any practical application, and two decades before this system puts power into the grid. I sure hope I am wrong on that, but I don’t think it would be prudent to abandon more conventional power generation means in hopes that this will make such investment needless. It hasn’t yet broken even in energy input/output, which is the first demonstration that will be needed. Once it does that, we can get very excited; but it will still be a while after break even before it adds energy to the grid.

    The US is in the Coming Energy Crisis I predicted back in my columns in the 1970’s. It will take us time to get out of it. New technology will help, but I doubt we’ll get out of this on the cheap. That would take a miracle.

    #6222
    BreakableBreakable
    Keymaster

    vansig wrote: Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    For a quite long time I was suggesting to go for the fusion-fission hybrid approach. Its essentially the same as going the high price road, but does not involve lying about the price. Not only would it increase experiment believability, but if other projects are of any measure funding would skyrocket:
    http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/WR_Approval_for_Myhhra_0503101.html
    And after this has been implemented funds earned can buy time to learn more and finish the engineering of the DPF.
    The current route seems much more risky:
    After the current goals are achieved LLP will still have to prove (using peer-review or otherwise) that the results are real (while on minimal or no funding)
    or they will have to secure the funds and work on the prototype without having the results validated at all.
    This does not seem easy at all, especially that the energy crunch is about to start (peek oil 2011=50%, 2016=90% probability) – everything will get more expensive and less funds will be available for investment.
    Still I hope that the current funds will be enough for this experiment to prove that PB Fuel can be burned and it wont end on that.

    #6224
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    Breakable wrote:

    Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    For a quite long time I was suggesting to go for the fusion-fission hybrid approach. Its essentially the same as going the high price road, but does not involve lying about the price. Not only would it increase experiment believability, but if other projects are of any measure funding would skyrocket:
    http://www.world-nuclear-news.org/WR_Approval_for_Myhhra_0503101.html
    And after this has been implemented funds earned can buy time to learn more and finish the engineering of the DPF.
    The current route seems much more risky:
    After the current goals are achieved LLP will still have to prove (using peer-review or otherwise) that the results are real (while on minimal or no funding)
    or they will have to secure the funds and work on the prototype without having the results validated at all.
    This does not seem easy at all, especially that the energy crunch is about to start (peek oil 2011=50%, 2016=90% probability) – everything will get more expensive and less funds will be available for investment.
    Still I hope that the current funds will be enough for this experiment to prove that PB Fuel can be burned and it wont end on that.
    I am not privy to any information about the private funding that Aaron has referred to. However, the pattern is promising; my extrapolation is that as positive results continue to pile up, it is becoming less onerous to obtain such backing. If the timeline of thermal D-D unity this year and p-B11 burning within months thereafter, and thermal pB unity by the end of 2011, is successfully followed (or exceeded), then I would think that LPP will have an excellent chance of continuing to bootstrap its operations with such investments.

    Any path which leads to being beholden to or dependent on approvals by consortia and governments with massive vested interests in the current industrial-university-government-research complex & jobs program is far more dangerous, IMO.

    P.S. A belated welcome to Aeronaut to the exclusive Croaker Club; membership has now doubled! :cheese:

    #6225
    AvatarAeronaut
    Member

    Brian H wrote:

    P.S. A belated welcome to Aeronaut to the exclusive Croaker Club; membership has now doubled! :cheese:

    Gasp! When did that happen?

    #6227
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    Aeronaut wrote:

    P.S. A belated welcome to Aeronaut to the exclusive Croaker Club; membership has now doubled! :cheese:

    Gasp! When did that happen?
    When you hit 500 posts. :snake: :coolsmirk: Barely over a year for you; linear extrapolation suggests we’ll both pass 1000 by the end of the year, and thereafter you will build up an insurmountable Volubility Gap. :zip:

    #6229
    AvatarAeronaut
    Member

    Brian H wrote:

    P.S. A belated welcome to Aeronaut to the exclusive Croaker Club; membership has now doubled! :cheese:

    Gasp! When did that happen?
    When you hit 500 posts. :snake: :coolsmirk: Barely over a year for you; linear extrapolation suggests we’ll both pass 1000 by the end of the year, and thereafter you will build up an insurmountable Volubility Gap. :zip:

    Why wait til then?

    #6232
    Avatarvansig
    Member

    Breakable wrote:

    Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    For a quite long time I was suggesting to go for the fusion-fission hybrid approach. Its essentially the same as going the high price road, but does not involve lying about the price.

    it isn’t “lying about the price”. it’s “setting expectations”. we expect that the $1M will deliver the whole 15MW plus a spare generator. they (investors, licensees) expect marginal increase in value over what is currently available.

    we have not yet met their expectations by demonstrating a working generator.

    so let’s give ourselves some head-room, by testing receptiveness to the concept. the other day i had a chat with a guy from the local power generation company, and told him about the above spec, without mentioning that it is fusion. He was quite receptive, and suggested that a 15MW generator is in the zone for a typical university or industrial campus. my conclusion: an easy sell.

    #6233
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    vansig wrote:

    Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    For a quite long time I was suggesting to go for the fusion-fission hybrid approach. Its essentially the same as going the high price road, but does not involve lying about the price.

    it isn’t “lying about the price”. it’s “setting expectations”. we expect that the $1M will deliver the whole 15MW plus a spare generator. they (investors, licensees) expect marginal increase in value over what is currently available.

    we have not yet met their expectations by demonstrating a working generator.

    so let’s give ourselves some head-room, by testing receptiveness to the concept. the other day i had a chat with a guy from the local power generation company, and told him about the above spec, without mentioning that it is fusion. He was quite receptive, and suggested that a 15MW generator is in the zone for a typical university or industrial campus. my conclusion: an easy sell.
    It has been asserted by some here that the NRC and other regulators will use every possible remotely applicable bureau-rule to delay and drive up the cost as far as possible, certainly by a factor of 5, or perhaps even 10. My response to that has been to suggest that no state and even the US is not the world, and any jurisdiction that played such games would find itself “sucking gas” when others used the huge cost advantage to their advantage, instead of trying to protect local monopolies, etc.

    #6237
    Avatarvansig
    Member

    Brian H wrote:
    It has been asserted by some here that the NRC and other regulators will use every possible remotely applicable bureau-rule to delay and drive up the cost as far as possible, certainly by a factor of 5, or perhaps even 10. My response to that has been to suggest that no state and even the US is not the world, and any jurisdiction that played such games would find itself “sucking gas” when others used the huge cost advantage to their advantage, instead of trying to protect local monopolies, etc.

    yeah; that “drive up the cost” tactic is the committed goal of the anti-nuke lobby, which is partly nimby, and partly legitimate anti-proliferation lobby. the good news is, we’re on their side, on this one. to quote Eric: “focus fusion is very anti-proliferation”.

    #6238
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    vansig wrote:

    It has been asserted by some here that the NRC and other regulators will use every possible remotely applicable bureau-rule to delay and drive up the cost as far as possible, certainly by a factor of 5, or perhaps even 10. My response to that has been to suggest that no state and even the US is not the world, and any jurisdiction that played such games would find itself “sucking gas” when others used the huge cost advantage to their advantage, instead of trying to protect local monopolies, etc.

    yeah; that “drive up the cost” tactic is the committed goal of the anti-nuke lobby, which is partly nimby, and partly legitimate anti-proliferation lobby. the good news is, we’re on their side, on this one. to quote Eric: “focus fusion is very anti-proliferation”.
    Yeah, but it uses ATOMS, doncha know? And we all know how dangerus them things are! πŸ˜†

    #6244
    AvatarAeronaut
    Member

    vansig wrote:

    Here’s that marketing black-magic: if $250K for a 5MW reactor piques peoples’ “too good to be true” filter, then tell them $1M for 1..15 MW. People have come to expect incremental improvements, not revolutionary ones. We know it’s revolutionary. Let’s downplay that. Later, when the technology triples their expectations, we all win.

    For a quite long time I was suggesting to go for the fusion-fission hybrid approach. Its essentially the same as going the high price road, but does not involve lying about the price.

    it isn’t “lying about the price”. it’s “setting expectations”. we expect that the $1M will deliver the whole 15MW plus a spare generator. they (investors, licensees) expect marginal increase in value over what is currently available.

    we have not yet met their expectations by demonstrating a working generator.

    so let’s give ourselves some head-room, by testing receptiveness to the concept. the other day i had a chat with a guy from the local power generation company, and told him about the above spec, without mentioning that it is fusion. He was quite receptive, and suggested that a 15MW generator is in the zone for a typical university or industrial campus. my conclusion: an easy sell.

    The 1st MW is going to take the longest and be the most expensive to deliver to a load, where it can solve a large number of real-world problems. But we’re still assuming one or a few large investors who will be looking for proof that FoFu1 actually works. The higher the individual contribution, the higher the expectation of a “sure thing”, which we all know can’t exist. All that will ever exist is a set of probabilities which will be interpreted differently by each individual.

    That thought can be expanded, given our nearly universal market potential, to have individual investors organized at the local level who have a vested interest in seeing pB-11 work, even if it does take 5 or 10 years. And with their contributions being in the $100 to $1,000 range, and possibly tax-deductible, this network can spring up rapidly, sending clear signals from Main Street to Wall Street, and from there to Washington. The idea of as little as $100 sending an enormous signal is salable in it’s own right.

    The need for working hardware is a hidden assumption that I’ve challenged in other threads. Today we sell Hope. If all stays on schedule, the world’s going to have one heckuva New Year’s party.

    #6246
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    Aeronaut wrote:

    That thought can be expanded, given our nearly universal market potential, to have individual investors organized at the local level who have a vested interest in seeing pB-11 work, even if it does take 5 or 10 years. And with their contributions being in the $100 to $1,000 range, and possibly tax-deductible, this network can spring up rapidly, sending clear signals from Main Street to Wall Street, and from there to Washington. The idea of as little as $100 sending an enormous signal is salable in it’s own right.

    The need for working hardware is a hidden assumption that I’ve challenged in other threads. Today we sell Hope. If all stays on schedule, the world’s going to have one heckuva New Year’s party.

    Don’t get too far ahead of yerself, Aero! There are VERY strict SEC limits on what you can do in the way of soliciting investments without being a registered ‘vehicle’ and so on. I suggest you have a wee dialog with Aaron or Eric before you get too far along in such plans. They may well be flat-out illegal at this point.

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