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Sun May 20, 2018, 01:41 PM

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex depart Windsor Castle

for a reception hosted by The Prince of Wales at Frogmore House, in a silver blue Jaguar E-Type Concept Zero. This vehicle was originally manufactured in 1968, and has since been converted to electric power

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Response to HAB911 (Original post)

Sun May 20, 2018, 01:45 PM

1. Mmm..mmm..mmm...bye you two ..have fun & have a blessed long happy life


That is a sweet video.

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Response to HAB911 (Original post)

Sun May 20, 2018, 01:49 PM

2. My favorite car when I was a kid. XKE Jag So classy .. and electric to boot!


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Response to YOHABLO (Reply #2)

Sun May 20, 2018, 01:53 PM

3. Mine too, although I never rode in one.

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Response to YOHABLO (Reply #2)

Sun May 20, 2018, 02:11 PM

5. My favorite too!

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Response to HAB911 (Original post)

Sun May 20, 2018, 01:57 PM

4. my fave too

Not sure I could get out of it once I got in now though.

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Response to HAB911 (Original post)

Sun May 20, 2018, 02:41 PM

6. Rich people who did very little to accumulate wealth driving an electric car on a planet...

...where billions of people lack access to clean water or even rudimentary sanitary facilities.

WHO: 2.1 billion people lack safe drinking water at home, more than twice as many lack safe sanitation

I'm just beside myself with thrills...or maybe not...since I actually know something about the environmental impact of electric cars.

This is actually worse than Musk worship, and Musk worship is a horrible feature of our ongoing descent into obliviousness.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #6)

Mon May 21, 2018, 08:36 AM

9. I'm curious

We are speeding down a one way street to the demise of the internal combustion engine. In your opinion, what is the alternative?

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Response to HAB911 (Reply #9)

Mon May 21, 2018, 07:10 PM

10. The demise of the ICE is another one of those popular beliefs that is not connected with reality.

I certainly don't want to place myself in the position of endorsing the car CULTure.

This said, certain kinds of self propelled vehicles would be required in a civilized world as opposed to the one in which we live.

Examples would be tractors, delivery trucks (where trains are not available), emergency vehicles etc...

As it happens, electric vehicles are often less clean than are gasoline ICE vehicles. I often point to this paper that shows that air pollution mortality in higher in China for electric cars (but not electric scooters) than air pollution mortality from gasoline powered cars:

Electric Vehicles in China: Emissions and Health Impacts (Cherry et al, Environ. Sci. Technol., 2012, 46 (4), pp 20182024).

I discussed this paper at length elsewhere: China Already Has 100 Million Electric Vehicles

The fantasy behind electric cars is that electricity is inherently clean and this is not remotely true. Almost all of the electricity on this planet is generated from dangerous fossil fuels and the fraction of world energy so produced is increasing, not decreasing. Given the number of energy transitions involved in making an electric car run, along with the 2nd law of thermodynamics, an electric car under many circumstances wastes energy and thus is very capable of being worse than a gasoline car.

To the extent we need self-propelled vehicles, I think the paper by the late Nobel Laureate George Olah is the best description of the path to reducing the unacceptably high external costs of the car CULTure, not that the car CULTure as structured now can ever be sustainable.

The highly cited paper is here: Anthropogenic Chemical Carbon Cycle for a Sustainable Future (George A. Olah*, G. K. Surya Prakash, and Alain Goeppert, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2011, 133 (33), pp 1288112898)

Of the two fluid fuels Olah proposes, methanol and DME, DME is superior by far, as it is non-toxic and has a very short atmospheric half life, about 5 days.

DME used in a diesel engine, appropriately modified to account for lubricity and DME compatible seals and injectors would be far cleaner than any electric car ever could be.

DME is also a replacement for any type of device running on natural gas, on LPG, and possibly on spark engines. It also is an excellent refrigerant, heat storage medium (as a supercritical fluid) and a very useful chemical solvent that is easy to remove simply by pressure release. It is easy to remove from water and, again, has very low toxicity.

It can be made directly or indirectly (from methanol), depending on the nature of the catalyst by direct hydrogenation of carbon dioxide.

Hydrogen, which is useless as consumer fuel but very valuable as a captive intermediate can either be made by thermochemical water splitting or thermochemical carbon dioxide splitting cycles, the latter because of the water gas shift reaction. Many of these are known. My personal favorite is a variant of the ZnO cycle, the variant producing at one step, an equimolar mixture of carbon dioxide and oxygen which would be very convenient for closed combustion (smoke stack free) of waste materials and biomass, thus affording concentrated carbon monoxide as a useful intermediate for fixing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to make things like polymers and carbon fiber type materials.

These thermochemical cycles, although often proposed for useless and unworkable solar thermal schemes are easily adaptable to nuclear reactors, which is why whenever I dream of nuclear reactors, I am thinking of ones that operate at much higher temperatures than those currently in use, in some cases, "pre-melted" reactors.

These very high temperature reactors would have very high thermodynamic efficiency and would in fact produce electricity as a side product and not as the primary end product.

Thanks for asking. Have a nice evening.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #10)

Tue May 22, 2018, 09:19 AM

11. and thanks for responding!

Most of that is above my pay grade, but understandable. I suppose I should have clarified ICE as fossil fuel ICE. What are the chances electric generation can or will be cleaned to the point vehicles make sense? Do you support nuclear as currently generated and are we headed to the high temp variety in any meaningful way?

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Response to HAB911 (Reply #11)

Tue May 22, 2018, 08:19 PM

12. You will never find anyone who is more enthusiastic about nuclear energy than I am.

I personally believe that is the last best hope of humanity, and I often state, that opposing nuclear energy is borderline insane and almost certainly immoral to the point of criminal.

If you know anything about me, you should know that.

The current fleet of nuclear reactors represents a great engineering, scientific, environmental and human success, but this infrastructure is largely based on technology that was developed in the 1950's and 1960's.

Like many other high tech devices, aircraft come to mind, nuclear energy is not risk free and there have been expensive and (in the case of Chernobyl) deadly failures, but like aircraft - which are the safest traveling devices in terms of deaths/100,000 km - nuclear energy is vastly superior to everything else, not perfect, but just infinitely better, which should be enough, but somehow isn't.

To answer your question:

High temperature reactors were studied extensively in the 1950's and 1960's and some were tested. It can be said that materials science at that time was relatively primitive compared to what we know now. As I remarked elsewhere, the British had moderately successful high temperature reactors, but largely they were electricity generating machines.

One of the most important tools for understanding materials was the development of the Kohn Sham equations, which were developed in the 1950's and 1960's well before the computer power existed to utilize them. The overwhelming majority of the functioning nuclear reactors in the world were designed before that computer power existed to use this theorem/equation. This work was developed by Nobel Laureate and Holocaust Survivor Walter Kohn. KS - and more advanced refinements - are now routinely used to address many questions in materials science and, for that matter, biological and chemical science.

There have been many more recent developments in both the theory, DFT and OFDFT, and practice of materials science since Kohn began publishing his work. Were it not for public stupidity, I'm sure we could develop outstanding reactors, but as of this decade, we are facing a period in which ignorance is triumphant, hopefully a brief reactionary interlude, but one never knows.

I have not kept up to date on the latest developments in high temperature reactors per se, although I have been very interested in refractory materials. Last I looked, the Chinese were exploring high temperature reactors and coupling them to the somewhat less than ideal (from my perspective) sulfur iodine hydrogen cycle. I believe they have a 10 MW high temperature gas cooled reactor operating, I'm not sure. People are always publishing sulfur iodine papers and modifications, and perhaps, because of a quirk originating with General Atomics

My son will be researching very high temperature refractories this summer in Europe, totally by coincidence, as a result of his academic success. I had nothing at all to do with it by the way. Nevertheless I'm really intrigued by this work, which involves both chemical structure and nanostructure applications, and I hope he'll be able to teach me something when he returns.

I've been daydreaming quite a bit myself about very high temperature reactors using liquid plutonium (and various eutectics) as a fuel, based on some preliminary work carried out in the late 1950's and early 1960's. I've spent quite a bit of time collecting and reading literature on this concept, which I believe deserves another serious look. I believe these types of reactors, in a "breed and burn" setting can definitely be structured to produce continuous hydrogen/carbon oxide cycles. If what I imagine is realistic, these would be remarkable machines, built and structured with what some people, not me, regard as "waste."

As my son's scientific abilities grow, I'm trying to drop these concepts into his mind, wherever he has time or interest. I will certainly not live to see anything like this, and no matter how much I've learned, in now way do I have the prestige or resources to see this thing through, but I'm impressed by my son's mind, and proud father that I am, I can hope he may have both the resources and prestige.

I'm hoping, beyond my son, for a generation less stupid than mine. Some of the kids I've met have been very impressive, very impressive.

That's all I've got. I've got hope.

What we're doing now is so wrong as to boggle the mind.

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Response to HAB911 (Original post)

Sun May 20, 2018, 03:40 PM

7. Isn't the steering wheel on the wrong side of the car

for Britain?

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Response to Jane Austin (Reply #7)

Sun May 20, 2018, 05:18 PM

8. It is, but most countries have allowances

...for wrong-side steered cars. In Trinidad there was a requirement for markings to warn other drivers you were in a left-steered car. And I once knew a guy in the US who had a right-steered Land Rover, which he'd imported himself.

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