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Comment Re:What (Score 1) 181

"No matter how fit he is, I think visiting the south pole aged 86 its taking awesomeness a bit too far."

Why? Compared to the moon, the temperatures on the south pole are quite toasty.

The South Pole may be a flat place, but it's at over 2800m, or 9300 ft. I understand that Aldrin's problem was getting oxygen at that altitude.

I met Aldrin once, at a conference in Tucson years ago. A truly awesome guy, but age means increasing physical limitations.

Comment John Doe warrants are the problem here (Score 2) 201

When the IRS or any other agency wants discovery of evidence in a case, it should be demonstrating interest in a specific person, partnership or corporation being investigated. The whole idea of John Doe warrants is an unconstitutional fishing expedition. Let's hope that now we'll get some new Supreme Court appointees who don't rubberstamp the government's every whim.

Comment Re:Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! (Score 1) 295

But this is Japan we're talking about, not Russia, and not the gloom-shrouded, anti-science West. Fukushima is not far from Tsukuba Science City, where I once worked, and if Japanese culture is still as I remember it, multiple teams are working on multiple solutions to this problem that will amaze the rest of the world. Right now, foreign journalists can't even spell terms like 'mycoremediation', but they're going to have to learn fast.

Comment Re:Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! (Score 0) 295

"I think everyone who thought about it for more than a couple of minutes was figuring to multiply the 'estimate' by a factor between 2 and 10."

Then later the estimate will get divided by some large factor as a new generation of rad-hard disassembly robots gets produced.

Comment Re:Brilliant research (Score 4, Insightful) 154

"This could be a real game changer if it manages to change some minds. We need nuclear tech to cope with the nuclear waste, and this can be done in an inherently safe and responsible way that turns the waste into energy."

But take a closer look at the article. This iech only applies to reactors using graphite blocks as a moderator, a type not used in the US or Asia. The 14C is separated out from the stable 12C and formed into the energy-producing diamonds.

Our own spent fuel, because it still contains 95% of the original energy potential, is better off being fed to a new generation of full-burnup reactors that will extract all the energy and leave behind only short-lived waste.

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