imikem (767509) writes "There is a really depressing article by Brad Plumer of the Washington post here. While I support an all of the above except fossil fuel approach to electric generation going forward, I often note the rather smug attitude of certain solar and/or wind advocates, ignoring serious problems with both. This irritates me, as their faith in these useful and necessary technologies often seems to approach that of a religion. Then too we get reflexively anti-nuclear, FUD-filled rants, and denialist members of the myth of the month club. On one hand, I cannot understand how apparently well-intentioned people can think that solar and wind plus efficiency can supply reliable energy to 7-9 billion people indefinitely. On the other are people who appear convinced that burning a hundred million years' worth of fossilized hydrocarbons in the space of a few decades won't drastically affect Earth's climate. I'm starting to lose hope that humankind will do anything meaningful in time to prevent a horrifying collapse of civilization and the global ecosystem within the lifetime of my children. Maybe The Matrix is the real future. Cue up some calm, reasoned debate in three, two, one." Link to Original Source top
imikem (767509) writes "University of Washington researchers and scientists at a Redmond-based space-propulsion company are building components of a fusion-powered rocket aimed to clear many of the hurdles that block deep space travel, including long times in transit, exorbitant costs and health risks. "Using existing rocket fuels, it's nearly impossible for humans to explore much beyond Earth," said lead researcher John Slough, a UW research associate professor of aeronautics and astronautics. "We are hoping to give us a much more powerful source of energy in space that could eventually lead to making interplanetary travel commonplace."