The Fusor Reactor: Philo Farnsworth
RAY OF DISCOVERY
There was once a dream of endless energy, of radiance without end. As dreams do, it found its material expressions in the discoveries of several truly gifted researchers. The dream symbols seek those who seek them. The discoveries were all the results of accidents. Fortunate accidents. Nevertheless, the world did see manifestations of dream-like energies whose sources were potent, mysterious, and eternal. It seemed then that these wonderful inventions, these strange power generators would fulfill so much of the dream and hope, the passion and desire of those who wait in silence.
These mysterious devices were received, gracious gifts from the providential source. Among those in whose hands the devices found their material expression, there was no question concerning their source. Here were anomalies of Nature. No one could have developed these things from existing lines of scientific inquiry. To do that would have required, in hindsight, another few centuries. No, the radiant energy receivers of Moray, Perrigo, Tomadelli, Hendershot, Hubbard, Coler, and so many others, were not the result of mere scientific persistence.
But, why were they given? Perhaps it was both because of an impending need and a humanly intended objective. Great revelations always precede potential world crisis. Great revelations precede human need. Perhaps they came to fulfill the world’s need for energy. Clean, safe energy. They all appeared at around the same time period. Both sides of the Century’s turn was witness to these wondrous discoveries. Perhaps also they came because the wrong use of certain natural energies would be proliferated on earth, endangering all life. There are those who will not argue with this understanding.
The discoveries arrive like a piercing ray. Where the discoveries appear makes no difference. Their benefits are intended for the whole race. They come like a ray in the night, striking into hearts who seek. The process is an active manifestation of external consciousness. Those who receive this blessed Ray make the discoveries, which are sent to save the entire race from impending perils. They have each seen and spoken of that Ray of Discovery. What humanity chooses to do with such messages will determine the future of nations.
A recent announcement from plasma physicists promises new and thrilling advancements in the generation of electrical energy for society. The prize of this research is cheap, clean, limitless electrical power in vast, limitless quantities. The energy source of which they speak could theoretically last for millennia. For this they require new billions for continued research. And the billions are obtained.
The hot fusion advocates, mostly grant-greedy academes and their research teams, paint a lovely future before eager Senate hearing committees. The very fact that Senate committees entertain such proposals at all makes conspicuous several startling facts. It becomes at once apparent that large and radical policy shifts in technological funding have been called into action. Once upon a time, proposals for hot fusion and space program initiatives were squashed flat by committee members. Having their own ties with fossil fuel cartels, none were willing to risk the emergence of new and futuristic technologies at the risk of their own financial security.
But now we see a defined policy shift propelling toward the new technology, as if some new regulatory strategy were being deployed. It is difficult to assess these behaviors and fiscal movements. Traditionally, American Money is made by resisting discoveries and technologies, not by promoting them. But there may be new regulatory variables and fears, which we must continue to assess.
Academes profess that the free social expression of hot fusion technology would trigger startling social revolutions. Like master behavioral modifiers, their words play the heartstrings well. The new improvement, they say, would mean the obsolescence of fossil fuels. Independence from every foreign oil source would be part of the “advantage”. Along with this obsolescence would come the disappearance of every fossil fuel attendant environmental plague. Next, they project the deployment of hot fusion power generating stations. Small industrial scale hot fusion reactors could supply all nationally needed electrical power, supplying it forever. Commercial hot fusion reactors will arise, they swear, if the government-backed research is licensed out to private concerns. According to the idealistic economists, which they employ, the long-range effects of this hot fusion revolution will not destroy the fossil fuel interests. Their economic advisers suggest that fossil fuel industries gradually begin shifting their markets from fuel to petrochemical sales. While such altruism has not been the historical response of the coal and oil companies, the committee members strain to hear and absorb each word of promise. Some are still careful, since Standard Oil is an American based trust. Showing a vote for new technology could be dangerous.
As the utopian promises of clean, cheap energy are waved before the committees in yearly bids for extensive contracts, the facts are not so flowery. In fact, the facts are not promising at all. It is surprising that academes who pursue hot fusion research are never as caustic when reviewing their own data results as they are with the research proposals of others.
The contradictory note in this scientific fund-raising symphony is very dissonant to those familiar with Hot Fusion’s past history. Yet, the bid-making proposals go on, the yearly show which brings them salaries. The hot fusion “prize”, sought through modern methods is, at best, elusive. Analysts who have followed the shaky course of current hot fusion research know the disappointments, failures, and practical limits of the entire hot fusion program. And there are limits to which real success in the hot fusion endeavor is also limited. But these are all very costly disappointments. Physicists who periodically announce minor “success” in the hot fusion race usually employ these announcements, obscure technical diversions, in their continuing effort to obtain continued support. But the dreams they wave are figments, the patchwork fragments of a former dream, which was, fulfilled in numerous energy discoveries. Long before “atomic” or “nuclear” were termed, there were real dream fulfilments, whose material vessels matched their promise. And they were inexpensive to reproduce.
- DEADLY SOUND: Vladimir Gavreau
- ELEMENTARY CHEMISTRY