The world is going to change this is remarkable

Olumin

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Right, but you could make the same argument for human space flight. Significantly more risky & complex then building airplanes. Yet; from the first supersonic jet to the moon landing it took only 22 years. Something most people probably wouldn't have thought possible at the time. Id argue that its a larger step from the first aircraft to the Saturn V, then it is from the first fusion ignition with a positive energy return to a commercial power plant. Its amazing what people can do with virtually limitless resources & budget (60s space program).
 

DRW

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These are 1, worst case numbers for some technologies and best case for others.
Every solar and wind KW is backed up by equivalent gas right now, so you really need to stack those costs. As noted above, that is based on very minimal battery storage, 2-6 hours. When you increase to needed 2-4 days from pure renewable supply, those costs at least double if not triple. Suddenly solar and wind is $5000/kW -- not so far from advanced nuclear that has had almost no investment. These are things that people who actually have to put this into practice have to consider as opposed to those that write articles and don't consider reality. Power is something that must be there all the time, 24/7.
I agree, there is something about those numbers. I'm pretty sure our (nuclear plant http://www.cookinfo.com/) cost per megawatt is competitive with other generation plants. I'm not a financial guy, and I don't speak for my employer, so I'm not going to toss a number up on the table. It probably wouldn't take long to find more realistic numbers for currently operating nuclear plants on the web.
 

Monocrom

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Unless some billionaire philanthropist or generous government program decides to finance the construction of plants in such places. In the name of environmental protection & European unity I could perhaps see richer European countries helping to finance fusion energy for other European states.
Someone actually did the math, and found out that literally 2% of Elon Musk's net worth, if properly distributed, could end World poverty. He was asked about that. Even said he'd do it. But only if an organization could be established to make sure the money was given out properly; instead of stolen by corrupt individuals. Imagine what another 1% could establish, given the topic being discussed.
 

Monocrom

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Like I said, someone did the math based on his net worth.
Now would everyone on earth be happy if that was done for them?.... Obviously not.
 

alpg88

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Like I said, someone did the math based on his net worth.
Probably the same people who did the math and said taking from rich and giving to poor is a good idea, completely ignoring 1000s of years of human history proving time and time again, it has an opposite result.
It is not about being happy, it is about failure of the outcome. They will just create more poverty as strange as it sounds it is true
 

alpg88

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SEveral years ago there was a story about a cop in nyc who bought a pair new shoes for a homeless, great story, now they guy will keep his feet warm and dry, well not exactly. a reported followed up on a story, and found the homeless guy a week or so later, he was wearing his old falling apart shoes full of holes, the reporter asked, why don't you wear your new shoes, he said i'm afraid i'm gonna get beat up and robbed for them shoes. whoever does that math completely ignores human and social factors. or maybe their goal is not to improve someone's life, but justify taking someone's wealth for themselves, history showed that time and time again.
 

Monocrom

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Probably the same people who did the math and said taking from rich and giving to poor is a good idea, completely ignoring 1000s of years of human history proving time and time again, it has an opposite result.
It is not about being happy, it is about failure of the outcome. They will just create more poverty as strange as it sounds it is true
Wasn't some political organization. Done more as a mathematical exercise. No one said he should be stripped of 2% or and percent of his wealth. And again, Musk agreed to it. But only if it could be done right. So far, no takers.
 

Monocrom

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Several years ago there was a story about a cop in nyc who bought a pair new shoes for a homeless, great story, now they guy will keep his feet warm and dry, well not exactly. a reported followed up on a story, and found the homeless guy a week or so later, he was wearing his old falling apart shoes full of holes, the reporter asked, why don't you wear your new shoes, he said i'm afraid i'm gonna get beat up and robbed for them shoes. whoever does that math completely ignores human and social factors. or maybe their goal is not to improve someone's life, but justify taking someone's wealth for themselves, history showed that time and time again.
Pretty sure the cop just wanted to do something nice and help him out. I'm familiar with that story, and what was clear is that the homeless man was clearly paranoid.

Look at me, advocating for the brighter side of humanity. Meanwhile, I'm the one who coined the phrase "Human-beings are disgustingly predictable." I still stand by it. But honestly, sometimes a pair of new shoes is given so a person can keep their feet warm, and free of blisters or cuts. If everyone stopped to considered everything you mentioned above, no one would stop to help ANYONE.
 

alpg88

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How does this discussion relate to fusion?
good question, the quest for fusion, unlimited free energy is promoted as saving a planet, and prosperity for mankind, but social and political factors will be deciding factors, not technology.
N.Tesla offered j.p. Morgan a way to supply energy to everyone with no wires, he declined, he saw no money in it, he wanted tesla to invent a way to send a message with no wires that he would charge money for. Same thing here, people in power will be controlling fusion, if it ever gets financially feasible, meaning will be making a profit for them. we will still be paying the bill. as far as it being better for environment, i'm not so sure. just look at clean electric cars, they leave bigger footprint, and use more resources to make than gasoline cars. and we are not even touching the fact that we'll need to upgrade entire infrastructure to support this goal, (iirc 68% of al cars electric by 2035).
 

Poppy

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Someone actually did the math, and found out that literally 2% of Elon Musk's net worth, if properly distributed, could end World poverty.<SNIP>

How does this discussion relate to fusion?

good question, the quest for fusion, unlimited free energy is promoted as saving a planet, and prosperity for mankind, but social and political factors will be deciding factors, not technology.
<SNIP>
alpg88, et al., I can't contribute much to the discussion about the viability of fusion, but I didn't want Monocrom to get the discussion sidetracked with a discussion about Elon Musk.
 

turbodog

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Also remember: from the first aircraft (hot air baloon, 1783), to the first airplane, it took 120 years. But from the first airplane to the first supersonic jet, it took only 44.
Fusion might have took 60 years to get this far, but that doesn't mean it'll take another 60 for further breakthroughs.

On first blush, this seems accurate. However, during the time in question we made leaps forward in material science, thermodynamics, design, electronics, electronic control, computers, machining tolerances, machining methods, etc.

The gains are dimishing... and the problems with fusion are SIGNIFICANT. We need materials that will operate 24x7 beyond the limits of melting just to name one.
 
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turbodog

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We are wanting fusion to... boil water, that's it. Nothing more. This is the same end result of fission, burning coal, and burning natural gas.

What if there were a way to extract the heat needed, w/o the radiation/waste/storage issue of fission and hundred years of r/d for fusion?

The earth is radioactive internally and produces unmeasurable heat. Drill a DEEP borehole, drill another a ways away - across a field w/ permeations, pump water in one end, extract steam from the other. And... you can do this near a thermal (coal/nat gas) plant... so no need to redo infrastructure.

This is in process _now_, funded by both gov't and private money. We have plenty of bore rigs, drillers, and expertise.

Even _if_ fusion was 100% solved tomorrow, it would take decades upon decades just to deploy across the US.

The earth is already doing fission, in a perfect containment vessel, both for radioactivity and waste, all we have to do is tap into it.
 
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Someone actually did the math, and found out that literally 2% of Elon Musk's net worth, if properly distributed, could end World poverty. He was asked about that. Even said he'd do it. But only if an organization could be established to make sure the money was given out properly; instead of stolen by corrupt individuals. Imagine what another 1% could establish, given the topic being discussed.

Someone literally was really awful at math.
 
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