Without Fundamental Research, World Is Heading Towards Energy Disaster

The economy and health (of the world) has no future, if new clean, low carbon base energy sources are not developed for  primary energy production. That means hydrogen (with derivatives) and nuclear (including thorium and high efficiency high temperature small reactors). Maybe  immense storage batteries are developable too, if breakthroughs are possible and happen… But we don’t really know if science fiction batteries could be made…

Now the point is this: hydrogen and nuclear must be developed, but government assisted research is needed. Otherwise what will happen is a squeeze between increasingly expensive fossil fuels, in which not enough investments happened (for good reasons, but that’s besides the point) and intermittent energy, which can’t replace the fossils…

As can be seen, INTERMITTENT energy (wind and solar) amount to nearly nothing. If we were only looking at electricity production, wind and solar would be more important, but still pretty ridiculous…

Such research should be a major part of the economy, but it is not. Instead all ponder if one more gas pipeline from dictator Putin to Europe should be made to flow… While conveniently avoiding Ukraine… Enabling an attack there.

These questions may not look economical and social… But they have the potential of dominating the economy, and society, short range and long term.  Complementing the intermittent energy production with hydrogen had been delayed too long. Unfortunately, the initial high scientific budget for new energy research shrank to nearly nothing, in the last version of the spending bill presented by the government. 

Without much more fundamental research, disaster is coming.

And let’s say it’s research of the details: we know hydrogen and nuclear work. It’s just a matter of figuring out the details. On the fundamental research front, LLL, Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, a US government facility just produced the first thermonuclear energy positive reaction…, and that by a factor of five in the energy directly absorbed by the imploding Deuterium-Tritium pellet [1]. Temperature was in excess of 100 millions Kelvin and pressure in excess of 100 million atmospheres… Only government labs can afford to get that fundamental…

Patrice Ayme


[1] Total energy release from fusion: 1.3 megajoule, total laser energy input, 1.9 megajoule…  

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