Successfully developing a liquid-fluoride thorium reactor (LFTR) would essentially solve our planets energy problems for thousands of years, because it would allow us to fully utilize the energy in natural thorium, which makes up 0.0012% of the Earths crust. Most of the research and development work for this technology was done by Oak Ridge National Labs back in the 50s and 60s. They were working to a different set of overall objectives, nevertheless, there are many lessons to be gleaned from their work that can help us to avoid pitfalls and develop LFTR into a high-performance, high-reliability power supply.
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This is a "Science Shorts" version of Jon Jenkins talk on the Kepler Mission. The Kepler Mission began its science observations just one year ago on March 12, 2009, initiating NASA's first search for Earth-like planet...
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There is going to be more and more debate and controversy as to what constitutes a heavy element given the fact that it only exists for a brief fraction of a second. Did it or did it not even exist at all?