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a stumble awesome science video

The pretty Awesome Bomb

This is a pretty awesome idea for a bomb, and to be honest, I never really thought of it.  I mean, if i wanted to destroy a city, I would just go all out and use a nuke, but I guess some people are “concerned for the environment” or some shit like that, and all the radiation that gets released into the atmosphere, and the death and destruction of people and property is apparently just not worth it to them.

These types of bombs are useful against minefields, and armored tanks because they create a massive pressure wave that can damage/destroy those things.  These are apparently comparable to sub-kiloton nuclear weapons, but without the fuss of radiation.  That’s all good and everything, but I prefer a simple Nuclear blast myself.

Whatever, here’s a video of the Russian Father of All Bombs, which is the largest non-nuclear bomb ever made. (interestingly enough, Russia is also the parents of the largest nuclear bomb ever made, the Tsar Bomb)

{photo | Thermobaric Weapons}

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a stumble awesome photo science the greatest

Nuclear Powered Everything!

Ah the 1950s.  Such a better time of life for the world.  DDT and Asbestos were used everywhere, a future was envisioned with flying cars, and the flux capacitor was invented.  It was during these simpler times that science realized that Nuclear power was the answer to everything. Before the silliness that was environmentalism, before Chernobyl and Three Mile Island.

It was during this time that NASA started Project Orion.  What is project Orion you ask?  The coolest and fastest way to travel in space (until FTL drives are made anyway).  The basic idea behind it was to use controlled nuclear explosions to propel a space ship froward in space.  Sounds pretty dangerous doesn’t it?  Well like all things of the 1950s, danger was everything’s middle name, if you didn’t have at least a 73% chance of being killed, or a 81% chance of wasting millions of dollars in spectacular explosions, then you weren’t doing proper research. (It’s my opinion that we need to return to those ideals if we as a species are to continue to exist).

Anyway, the concept behind the idea was sound, but the technology to control a nuclear explosion in then methods required just did not exist yet, that was one of the reasons why it was stopped.  However, there can be some concern from people about having 1080 nuclear bombs strapped the the end of their tiny little home and rocketing across the solar system at 0.1 times the speed of light.  That was the high estimate for speed for manned versions of the Orion, and 1080 nukes was the design for the Super Orion, an 8 million ton ship meant for interplanetary exploration.

It was an ingenious idea because nuclear power is cheaper then chemical to get to space, the only problem is fallout, and there would be tons of it if these rockets were made and launched from earth.  Why not launch then in orbit then? The EMP would knock out satellites.  The only solution was to launch from the poles, or from the moon or beyond.  How do you get this 8 million ton ship up there?  Build it in space.  In the 1950s though, that wasn’t economically feasible (it still isn’t), so in the end, the whole project was shelved, but shelved is better then scrapped.

They did perform some tests to see if you could propel a man made object with a nuclear explosion, and the tests were successful, so now it’s only a matter of restarting up this research.  The space elevator could be completed in as little as 20 years depending on who you listen to, and if we had a few of those, we could totally build one of these in orbit, use conventional explosives to get it to the moon, and then let her loose and go to Saturn, or Mars, or Asteroids.
With an estimated 14,000 nuclear weapons between just the US and Russia, making even small versions of the Orion ship a smart way to get rid of thousands of unused, unneeded nuclear weapons sitting in warehouses collecting dust, and wasting money.  It was estimated that we could make it to Mars in a year with these types of ships, and about 100 years to get to Proxima Centairi.

I really think it’s a cool concept, I mean look at these designs.  I doubt anything actually made would look anything like that in real life, but it still is an interesting idea.  One of the more plausible uses for this technology was to use it to force incoming asteroids and other NEOs out of the way by means of brute force.  Slam one of these rockets weighing in at few million tons and you will definitely knock anything out of the way.

Bringing things back to our planet, there was plans in both the US, and the USSR to have nuclear powered bombers circle the globe.  The idea behind them was that these bombers would never need to be refueled, and in theory, could circle above the earth as long as needed, always an hour or two away from dropping it’s payload on whatever city(ies) instructed to.

The air force actually did some tests with an engine that was nuclear powered.  What is a nuclear powered air craft engine?  Well, it’s a modified engine that gets its exhaust from super heated exhaust from the nuclear reactor.

Original tests by the air force were focused on proving that you could shield humans from the radiation from the nuclear reactors in an airplane, because the materials needed weigh a lot, which is something not so important in subs.  The process worked, but with the development of ICBMs, the need to keep planes circling the skies 24/7/365 was gone.  The program was scrapped, never to be heard from again.

Until now that is.  With the rising prices of jet fuel, people are looking towards other renewable energy sources.  While wind and solar and hydro power is good for electricity on the ground, it wont really work for an aircraft.  (Unless we have some paradox where you use the wind resistance to generate the power for the plane while its moving, but that would be a perpetual motion device that is just way to much for most minds to think of, anyway…)

Nuclear powered aircraft are a thing of dreams, a green way to travel the world, you could have non stop flights from NYC to Sydney, it would still take just as long to get there, because we haven’t come up with a sonic boomless supersonic jet, but hopefully we’ll be able to use our nuclear powered air craft to get that.  Then I would have a few of my goals fulfilled.

Nuclear aircraft use a nuclear reactor for their propulsion, so they have no fallout from a self contained intact reactor.  Perfectly safe.  There’s even measures in place to prevent accidents from happening if the nuclear engine got damaged, or if the plane was about to crash.  Now, with the fears of terrorism, I guess there is some reason to not want these nuclear powered planes, but with no risk comes no rewards, and I truly think that we should have nuclear powered everything.

Nuclear energy is a touchy subject, people don’t like it, they are afraid of it, and they don’t understand it.  The truth of the matter is that we need to embrace nuclear energy, and all the raw potential there is in it.  While it may be a scary technology, there is much to be learned, and gained from it.  It was a technology that people thought wasn’t possible, and in a few short years the world was proven wrong.  Unfortunately because of mostly irrational fears, we’ve underdeveloped our nuclear technologies.

There are real fears associated with nuclear power, but over the years, those have no real basis in fact anymore.  Now nuclear power is safer for the environment then conventional gasoline/fossil fuels.  The reactors are much more efficient, small, portable, and cheaper to run.  They also have an operational lifespan of multiple decades with proper maintenance.  In the right settings the cooling towers of nuclear plants really add to the ascetics of the land.  I would have no issues living with towers in my back yard.

And if things go wrong, well just remember this factual quote of mine:

They say the sunsets are beautiful after a nuclear blast

I say, let’s make some beautiful sunsets

There is a scientific reason for that too, it has to do with all the debris that gets sent into the atmosphere, it reflects, and refracts the light from the sunset differently.  It’s true, and that is my number one goal in life, see the sunset after seeing a nuclear bomb go off.

When I become rich and powerful, I will have my own personal private fleet of nuclear powered things.  And then when the robots take over, if i don’t have a bunker that’s nuclear powered, then I will take my nuclear powered ships into space, and set up shop inside some asteroid.

{Dark Roasted Blend | Project Orion | Nuclear powered passenger planes | Nuclear aircraft}

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a stumble science

Robotic Plants

Just what we need, more excuses for robotic entities in our own homes.  Maybe if people were less lazy, we would be less likely to cause our own destruction.  Not likely, humanity and lazyness usually go hand in hand.

Besides the fact that it’s a concept for a robotic planter that moves towards light, it’s a pretty nice looking planter.  I still can’t get over the fact that we want to make things robotic, it just doesn’t work for me, why?  Don’t you know that eventually that robotic planter will turn on you, hell, the plant inside it will probably help it turn, didn’t you see The Happening?  Plants teaming up with robots to create more environmentally friendly killing machines.  I’m sorry, that just makes me sick.  Also, I am trademarking that term Environmentally Friendly Killers™ ©2008.

Cats make everything cuter, don’t you think?

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awesome photo the greatest

End of an Aviation Icon

The F-117 Night Hawk, the first true stealth aircraft was retired in April of this year.  Now it looks like the first one has met its end with a garpple-equipped Caterpillar:

It looks like the operator had some fun.  How Ironic would it be if it was a Russian behind the wheel of that?

I feel bad because all my favorite planes are being replaced with new ones.  Granted these new ones are more advanced, and stuff.  But they are also way more expensive.  Not only that, but with the advent of faster and faster fighters, dog-fighting as it was invented just isn;t the same anymore.  And that’s sad, because that’s what made fighter pilots so awesome, at least to me anyway.

Until we have an epic space war with some aliens (or ourselves) (no robots though!), I think the fighter pilot as we know it right now, is gone and done.

{Gizmodo}

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a stumble science video

How the LHC works

See more funny videos and Technology Videos at Today’s Big Thing.

Here’s a nice video describing in simple detail how the LHC is going to destroy us all in a few weeks after it’s had enough time to throw a bunch of particles around in giant circles for awhile.

I think it’s pretty awesome how we can get something up to 99.9% of the speed of light. Granted it’s a super nano tiny particle, but it’s still a step in the driection of FTL ships, and that’s a step in the right direction in my book.

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a stumble awesome haha! internet photo the greatest

Best Stumbles 3

Hot off the heals of Best Stumbles 2‘s stumble from earlier this week comes another group of pictures I’ve collected over the course of the month.  This time there is remarkably less Nazi related humor, (but there’s some, don’t worry, I haven’t gone soft on you).  Still, to keep the home page from taking forever to load on slow connections, and from being super long what with the Bon Jovi post from this weekend, the full list is after the click:

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awesome science strange

The Spookiest Weapons ever

Ivy-Mike

This is my type of list!  Of course the Atom Bomb leads the way, and I would have no other weapon as number 1.  Some on the list are kinda dumb, and the Puke Flashlight, not so much spooky, but The Rods from God, sounds like a really awesome one.

rods from god

Just think, dropping giant metal rods from orbit down to earth at hypersonic speeds, and destroying whole cities.  That’s awesome!

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a stumble awesome DIY the greatest video

D-Day, small scale style


Ahh, the magic of CGI, green screens, and copy & paste! Despite all that, this D-Day invasion was done with only 3 people, and it really does look like it was a few hundred, unlike the few thousand that Saving Private Ryan looked like.
{Joblo}

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a stumble

Airplanes, the safest way to travel

birds vs. plane
If I was on that plane, I would freak out. If i was on any of these planes, or the airport, or seen any of it, I would freak out.
eject
That’s some good timing
broken plane
That’s sad, I like those planes

All being said though, air travel still remains the safest form of transportation for us humans…

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a stumble awesome DIY LEGO

LEGO Murderers

Good-Thing.net has set up some awesome sets of murder, LEGO style.  Be careful though, some of them are pretty gruesome, even for plastic people.