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Comment tug-of-war (Score 0) 250

There are the good guys, and the bad guys, and they are fighting mightily over EVs entering the mainstream market. The Koch Brothers, assisted by their minions, the Koch Suckers, are about to spend $10 million in an effort to suppress EV production and implementation here in the US, since the more EVs on the road, the less profit for the Fossil Fool industry. What has always mystified me is why somebody as obscenely rich as the Kochs would think their lifestyle would be any more enhanced by another billion or three. You would think that they would be afraid of stepping over the line at, some point, with the Justice Department ready to deprive them of not only a bug chunk of that previous cash they love, but a few years in prison for their misdeeds-- and at their ages, with any time behind bars they just might not make it out alive.

Comment Re: Now... (Score 0) 412

My name is Bill Dale. I am very curious about this subject, but I have lots of other interests as well. ÂThe one thing I am most passionately interested in also concerns chemistry: electric vehicles. Before there were any EVs on the market, I was so determined to drive without buying gasoline that came from our very worst enemies that I Âconverted a BMW to electric that isÂon YouTube now: ("BMW EV conversion burns rubber!!!") ÂI spared no expense in making it as powerful and serious as I could. ÂToday I have a Chevy pickup truck EV conversion, and another flashy, fun 3-wheel enclosed motorcycle EV that drives like a car, and both of them have opened many doors for me, such as spending an entire evening with Elon Musk at a private party, and being invited regularly to events of all kinds, for me to bring my EVs. I have struggled to handle the steep learning curve of AC motors, DC motors, power electronics, battery chemistry, etc. ÂIt is of primary importance that we discontinue our dependence on foreign oil as quickly and completely as possible since the $450 billion we spend yearly helps to support despotic regimes and terrorism, and has dragged us into a trillion dollars' worth of wars over the last several years. ÂIf we wean ourselves off of that oil, that is hundreds of billions of dollars we would otherwise be able to spend on our health care system, education, roads and bridges, and paying off this immense national debt. So... I do want to get up to speed on chemistry, even if it's a bit removed from the kind of chemistry we spoke of above. I have been in contact with Popular Science and would like to publish an article in their mag on the somewhat "invisible" EV conversion community. If you would like to see some pix of my show vehicles and see what makes them so unusual and popular, my email address is billdale "at" earthlink "dot" com. ÂI enjoy your passion for astronomy and astrochemistry (I guess that's what you'd call it!) and would enjoy staying in touch with you. Again, thank you for the detailed explanation of celestial chemistry (BTW... Neil deGrasse Tyson has a short but great video where he explains that every atom in our body was created by what I would refer to as solar alchemy. Fascinating.)  Later-- "Electric Bill".

Comment Re: Now... (Score 0) 412

Thanks for your reply. I gave it more thought... if a large mass of iron or other inert material were in a star, it would be much heavier than the gases so would sink into the core, making it hard to have any effect on its light patterns. Also, if it was there for very long, the metals would probably vaporize eventually and disappear. Even if the ratio of metal to gas was very high, it might not work. I am eager to see if someone eventually finds a theory that fits this scenario. You may have heard about Comet Lovejoy that plunged into our Sun a few years ago. Everyone expected it to be eaten up, but instead a few hours later emerged from the other side at an odd tangent. https://youtu.be/yVvI-LWsmpE

Comment Re: Now... (Score 0) 412

We need to think outside the box, or the Dyson Sphere, as it were. Perhaps, most suns are made of the hydrogen and helium we are familiar with, but 2 hat if a star were bombarded with large inert bodies consisting of iron or other materials that would create inconsistent light output as those semisolid bodies materials moved about within the mixture? In the last year or so, there was a comet that struck our sun and, surprisingly, emerged rather intact a few days later. There is precedent for believing that solid or semisolid bodies can survive within such an environment, at least for a while.

Comment Re: FWP (Score 0) 228

You are the WORST of the WORST... a chronic, immature complainer with a chip on your shoulder about all things reasonable and sane. I am not "upper class", or even upper middle class... my ears and lungs are assaulted daily with not only leaf blowers, but police cars and helicopters, Harleys with no pollution controls or mufflers racing down the street just feet from my house, school buses, charter buses, metro buses and trains ruining the quality of life here. Anything to reduce ANY of that noise and pollution is welcome. You would have only the weakest of legs to stand on if the only solution was to ban all leaf blowers or makers of noise and pollution, but as the article clearly states, the answer is to use ELECTRIC blowers that produce only the least of noise and NO pollution at all... and they are far better for the user not only for their own lungs and ears, but for their wallets as well-- they cost nearly nothing to operate as opposed to those pieces of recalcitrant crap that foul out, require constant maintenance, are an explosive hazard. You have NO business trying to force me to put up with that much noise, pollution and Tea Party-type rhetoric. You and those like you should be exiled to a tiny island where you are forced to submit to these terrible offenses daily. I look forward to streets overrun with Teslas, and Bolts, and other near-silent cars, trucks and motorcycles that produce neither pollution nor sound to assault my senses or the senses of those around me.

Comment Re: Paper rockets (Score 0) 155

If you blame everything you do not like on a can of soup, and the soup is actually innocent, you can rant and rave forever and accomplish nothing. What you do not like about the Space Program (as well as the ACA, immigration, etc.), you have to actually finger the real culprit or nothing will improve. Obama has many issues he is dealing with... in this case, ACA, the economy and a few other issues take a higher priority... the GOP keeps trying to kill Obamacare even though polls show resoundingly that it is working and people want it. As long as GOPs keep wasting their energy and tax dollars insisting it does not work, and all evidence it to the contrary (do you see tens of thousands of people on the street clamoring to overturn ACA?) says otherwise, then other matters such as the Space Program can not be properly addressed.

Comment Re: Reliability of refurbished booster is unknown (Score 0) 163

You disparage SpaceX for not using parachutes-- yes, parachutes were used for smaller components-- mainly capsules-- during early missions with smaller craft, and with tiny model rockets, but if you do not understand the principle of "problems of scale", you need to look it up. The simplest example of a problem of scale would be that if you dropped a glass sphere one-tenth of an inch from a height of 10 feet onto a hard steel surface, it is likely to survive intact. If you drop a glass sphere 20 feet in diameter from a "height" of just one inch, you can be sure it will shatter to pieces. The Dragon booster rocket is more thanca dozen stories tall--the biggest ever-- and would definitely require a rocket firing to slow it down before hitting the ocean, even with a huge parachute, or the entire assembly would be crushed on impact with the water. You are better off doing it as SpaceX did it, landing softly on a pad. This guy succeeded in bringing this huge booster back intact--he does not warrant your sarcastic comments, but enthusiastic cheers for such an incredible feat. In the future 80 you do not have the slightest background in the subject at hand you are best not to be showing how foolish and clueless you are.

Comment Going forward (Score 0) 163

Just as the reusable booster is a strategy to reduce costs, they will he looking at other cost-savers. The Dragon launch system is the largest ever built, plus by using super-cooled, denser fuel, they can put more hardware in orbit than anyone could before them. One strategy they may employ would be, as they could have done on this last momentous launch, was to have put a full 12 satellites in orbit rather than just 11 plus one dead weight for balance. When the first of those satellites does go haywire, that 12th satellite could be taken out of hibernation to fill the slot of that first dead satellite. And, going forward, using all excess launch potential to put "spares" in orbit that hibernate until needed.

Comment Re: where is the factory? (Score 0) 151

Tesla is closely monitoring 60 different cell chemistries being developed by a wide variety of universities, corporations and non-profits. None of them have shown themselves close to market yet. As soon as one of them do, you can be sure it will show up in Tesla's immense, 5-billion-dollar Gigafactory in Nevada. Batteries are by far the most expensive element in the composition of an EV, and a major drop in battery price or gain in energy density would be a massive disruption to the auto markets and OPEC... and the oil despots are so terrified of EVs that as more and more EVs appeared on the road-- there are currently about a half-million in use-- OPEC began to drive the price of gasoline down, knowing that when the price of gas is high, more EVs are sold, but when the price of gas drops, those EV owners don't go back to gasoline-- they stay with electric drive. As an EV owner/ driver, I know how much cheaper and satisfying an EV can be: more powerful, quieter, near-zero maintenance, and guilt-free. I don't want my gas money going to terrorists, and love knowing the money I spend driving an EV will stay here In this country.

Comment Re: the new slow dummies in the left lane (Score 0) 748

Racist to the nth. I am not Asian, but your prejudice is glaring... you even try to justify yourself by oddball logic. It's fools such as yourself that have pushed Trump into a position of prominence. I live, in L.A. with lots of Asians of every flavor, and I see no more accidents in Koreatown or Little Tokyo or other Asian centers than elsewhere. I am only glad I do not have a jackass such as yourself as a neighbor.

Comment Re: Dammit... (Score 0) 105

You are still a fool and an idiot if you think the observation able universe is anything less that tens of billions of light years... the edge as, we know it is about 43 billion light years from us. Of the closest bodies near us-- our own Moon, Venus, Mercury, the Sun and Mars-- the latter is the only one we had any hopes of finding any life, but there are about 40 billion habitable planets in our galaxy, and you are delusional enough to think that in these few short years that we have been looking without success, that that is enough reason to think there is no life. Most scientists today are of the opinion that there is intelligent life out there, and that given enough time, we will find it.

Comment Re: Dammit... (Score 0) 105

Damned idiotic spell corrector! It should have Carl Sagan's name in its database, as well as a lot of other words that it lacks, such as "its" and "they're"... and it won't even allow you to add such words to its database, forcing you to keep correcting its incorrect corrections. This is despite the fact that if I type "corrrctions", it will add that obvious nonsense to its word list!

Comment Re: Dammit... (Score 0) 105

Amazing. Is there something so extraordinarily terrifying about the possibility of intelligent life somewhere within a billion light years of us, that, without the slightest background in astronomy or related sciences, and despite the fact that thousands of far more schooled individuals than you are not foolish enough to make such a definitive statement? Carl SSatan's aid that there are only two possibilities, each of which is numbingly profound: that in this enormously vast universe that we, on this tiny blip of a planet, are the only living things. The other possibility is that we are not alone. You cannot prove a negative... to even pretend to do so by professing there is no other intelligent life, makes you look pitifully ignorant.

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The key elements in human thinking are not numbers but labels of fuzzy sets. -- L. Zadeh