I awoke in a pretty poor mood this morning, which was a little upsetting… As I am so used to being the optimistic and absurdly cheerful one at work…
Which when you consider the oldest person I work with aside from me is maybe twenty years old… It is probably a little sad.
Anyway, I am not going to let that cloud my mind too much… It would be silly to allow that to cloud my mind.
Plus, I am currently listening to happy instrumental music, well that and Nyan Cat. So I cannot be unhappy right now… It is imposible.
I did originally write down that I was going to make something on here which had a very… I suppose, a mean nature.
So I changed my mind and moved onto the other suggestions I had written on my list, and the other two things were rather sad…
So after contemplating if my brain was just naturally a sarcastic prick, I looked through my old notes (Trust me there are an absolute fuck ton, also I used to be a massively pretentious penis… Seriously… Consider that possibility… Seeing as I am currently a little bit of a pretentious penis) and found something I really wanted to talk about.
(This is my bedroom… Not that this was particularly hard information to garner yourselves… But hey I can be- hang on, what would that even be? Whimsical maybe? Obvious? Anyway… I think I’m tired.)
It is a little bit of a departure from my usual list of topics, but it is still an interesting one to discuss… Even if this discussion is still mostly if not entirely one sided.
We need more power!
In this, I do not mean the metaphorical power over your own destiny or even the literal political or monetary power one would get from such pursuits, but I mean literal energy.
As in electricity, as in juice and a ridiculous cornucopia of other terms which means what we consume in frankly horrifying amounts these days.
It is the reason why we cant settle wars and things of that nature by having giant mech battles, or launch many deep space missions.
The technology exists to do all of these things and a hell of a lot more, the one thing we are missing is the energy required to do it.
Batteries have come a hell of a long way since Alessandro Volta invented them in 1800, but they are still literal parsecs away from the same level in which technology has evolved since then.
Side Note: I just wanted to put this in because I can literally think of no other place to put this, but a parsec is an actual unit of measurement. It is equal to 3.26 light years… As in it would take light, a form of electromagnetic radiation (Nerd Rage ensue), 3.26 years to travel that far… Something which travels (Roughly, obviously excluding things it has to travel through) at 186,000 miles per second. So we are talking 19,000,000,000,000 miles or 31,000,000,000,000 kilometres if you are American…
We have even created batteries which we can recharge to use again and again, but still these do not put out enough power…
We are consistently working on new theories on creating energy; cold fusion is my personal favourite, not because it is most likely, although there is more research into it now than there ever has been, but because it is the most interesting…
But then we would descend down the roads of creating miniature black holes with the pressure needed, and reducing atoms to literally their state at the point of the big bang… I live and breathe for this stuff, not because I am a scientist but just because it all fascinates me so damn much!
Side Note 2: Cold Fusion is a hypothetical idea that we could create a nuclear reaction at essentially room temperature. When you consider the types of places that fusion happens, for example, the Sun, that is pretty darn cold… A VHTR (The imaginatively titled, Very-High Temperature Reactor) is about 1000 degrees centigrade (Again 1832 degrees fahrenheit if you are American) and that is the type of place we do our fusion. But even with this example we can see why its called Cold Fusion.
But then again most of fringe science I find fascinating. As it is only just outside of accepted norms yet it is still within enough understanding to be accepted as theories.
But this is probably the whole reason why I read that book called Time by Stephen Baxter, that was very much rooted in fringe science as well as quite a bit of scientific speculation.
Even in here there is a lot of speculation about fuel resources running out which again is quite intrinsically tied with the issue of energy being a desperately needed commodity in much greater amounts than ever before despite a dwindling supply.
But then after the issue of power generation there is also the issue of storage… Where would it all go?
There are experimental space craft being drafted which have solar sails which could use the bountiful energy of the sun to power space flights, but they have to be gigantic in size! And so not exactly practical.
Side Note 3: The best solar panels we have at the moment are X21-345 from SunPower which convert 21.5% of the solar energy which makes it through the atmosphere. Roughly only 70% of the suns ultraviolet radiation makes it through the atmosphere, to make things a little easier this is the part of sunlight which gives you a tan but is not the only part of sunlight. Leaving only thirty percent… And through some delightful maths (A subject I dislike) solar panels can only use 6.45% of sunlight! Which is only just better than plants which can generate biomass from around 3-6% of daylight.
Energy is something which we will always need and if the past century has taught us anything it is that.
We will need to develop more and more complex methods to ultimately generate more and more power. Will we see cold fusion? Perhaps… Will we see an easier method of nuclear power? More likely… But there are literally hundreds of power plans in place to generate more powerful forms of fuel…
(Is it though? The end is a very ubiquitous title… The end of what? I can see why I am sleep deprived so often…)
But will technology completely eclipse power generation? Maybe, I like to live in world where the future is not certain, we are not inevitably going to murder ourselves, nor are we ever likely to garner world peace…
We are what we have always been. Grey, neither evil nor good… We are all varying shades, stuck in the middle.
T’is the curse of being mortal.