Tuesday, December 16, 2008


test of openID

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Exxon Valdez vs. Natural Oil Seeps

Oil naturally seeps out of the ocean floor in areas known as seeps. One in particular, off the coast of California is well known. It is the Santa Barbara Oil Seep, and was known by the Indians that lived on the coast.

The oil seep has been quantified by researchers in this paper. The authors claim that 100 barrels of oil per day seep into the ocean.

According to Wikipedia, the Valdez reportedly released 10.8 million gallons of oil into Prince William Sound. This is equivalent to 257,000 barrels.

Thus, the Santa Barbara oil seep leeks equivalent to the Valdez every 2600 days, or 7.0 years.

And check out this article from the Christian Science Monitor on the same subject.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Yeah? So What!

Ok. The arctic may have oil.

Well compare that to oil reserves in the Green River Formation in the Western United States.

Then get back to me.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Global Warming is not a settled science

We don't have to accept any more without a fight, that there is any consensus amongst scientists about Antropogenically caused Global Warming.

From the most recent Editor's Comments of the American Physical Society:

With this issue of Physics & Society, we kick off a debate concerning one of the main conclusions of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN body which, together with Al Gore, recently won the Nobel Prize for its work concerning climate change research. There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution. Since the correctness or fallacy of that conclusion has immense implications for public policy and for the future of the biosphere, we thought it appropriate to present a debate within the pages of P&S concerning that conclusion. T...

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Nuclear Waste Vitrification Revisited

I've read a recent popular mechanics article about mini nuclear reactors. From the comments on the article, many people are still terrified about how we process nuclear waste.

Let me first say that I worked for some time with EG & G Rocky Flats, in Rocky Flats, Colorado, on a research project that was directly involved with the development of processes to treat nuclear waste.

While I am not a chemist involved in radioactive chemistry, I developed models to predict chemical and mechanical processing times, in order to assess the overall requirements necessary to treat the many thousands of drums of nuclear contaminated waste that was sitting ABOVE ground.

In my view, the process of vitrification to research the process of "vitrification", which is essentially the process of embedding the radioactive ash into glass. The ash is created by oxidizing the radioactive waste in a slow, but controlled fashion. The resulting ash is mixed with molten glass. The ash incorporates itself into the glass matrix. After it solidifies, the radioactive components are embedded within the crystalline structure. This is much like how lead crystal is safe to drink from, even though it contains lead. The lead does not leach out of the glass. The following research paper from Pacific Northwest National Labs shows that unblanketed nuclear ash-containing glass has a nearly leachless rate for thousands of years.

The vitrified glass is still radioactive, and does heat up, but in a very predetermined way. The heat-up is determined by the relative amounts of ash and glass.

Finally, the vitrified radioactive glass can be "blanketed" That is, encapsulated by non-radioactive glass. This would reduce the leach rate by many orders of magnitude... That is to TENS to HUNDREDS of thousands of years.

Add to the fact that the vitrified waste can be stored in an underground salt dome, and basically there is no problem for humanity.