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Comment: Re:"Thus ends "Climategate." Hopefully." (Score 4, Interesting) 497

by hairykrishna (#47415943) Attached to: Climate Change Skeptic Group Must Pay Damages To UVA, Michael Mann

Define 'scepticism about AGW catastrophism'. I'm a professional physicist and I would suggest, based on experience talking to my colleagues, that there is very little scepticism amongst physicists that humans are responsible for observed temperature rises and are going to be responsible for a whole lot more. It is certainly not 'rampant'. Consequences of said warming for the human race is a different topic.

Comment: Re:Riiiight (Score 1) 498

by hairykrishna (#46453729) Attached to: Ukraine May Have To Rearm With Nuclear Weapons Says Ukrainian MP

Expertise and know-how counts for little. Essentially every country in the world either has that or could acquire it in short order. What matters in reality is stocks of highly enriched uranium or separated plutonium. Ukraine (probably) has neither and does not have the infrastructure to produce either on a short timescale.

Comment: Re:Is this guy a conservative? (Score 5, Insightful) 141

by hairykrishna (#43711105) Attached to: Interviews: Freeman Dyson Answers Your Questions

He said that Bush senior removed all the tactical nukes which made the world safer. This is true regardless of what you think of the Bush's other actions.

I'm not sure that Dyson can easily be pigeonholed into a broad political definition. He's a very smart man who says what he thinks and doesn't really give a crap about anyone elses opinion of him. I don't always agree with him but he's generally worth listening too.

Comment: I'm glad I was a teen 20 years ago (Score 4, Interesting) 1078

by hairykrishna (#43608737) Attached to: Florida Teen Expelled and Arrested For Science Experiment

I was far from a bad teenager. I loved science though and if it went bang that was all the better. Draino and aluminium foil? Jesus. I made fertiliser bombs. I synthesised Nitrogen triiodide and all manner of other fun compounds.

One bonfire night I once had a visit from the police due to my homemade titanium salutes. They were amused and told me not to blow my hands off. These days I'd go to jail for a million years.

Comment: Re:Top secret? (Score 2) 101

by hairykrishna (#42689253) Attached to: Secret UK Uranium Components Plant Closed Over Safety Fears

The AWE site at Aldermaston is enormous. It's an old airfield stuffed with big, nondescript buildings. Unless you're working on site you won't get within about half a mile of any of the 'interesting' ones and even when on site you won't know what's in most of them unless directly working there. I can well believe that they have a hidden enrichment plant.

Comment: Least of your worries (Score 5, Informative) 386

by hairykrishna (#41013637) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Protecting Data From a Carrington Event?

The only mechanism I can think of which would case a solar flare to render optical disks unreadable would be radiation damage. A solar flare which delivered that kind of dose would likely wipe out all life on earth so you probably wouldn't be worrying about your backups.

Comment: Re:U.S. loves to kill things (Score 1) 400

You've got the wrong end of the stick. HEU works just fine in an implosion weapon and in a gun type, plut works only in an implosion type. The reason most weapons are plut is cost and availability. You're also misusing 'Teller-Ulam design'. This refers to the design of the fusion secondary in a H-bomb and not the design of the primary.

You are right about non proliferation buggering isotope production though.

Asynchronous inputs are at the root of our race problems. -- D. Winker and F. Prosser