Progress on India’s Thorium Nuclear Reactor and South Africa’s Pebble Bed

Progress on South Africa’s Pebble Bed ReactorCanada’s SNC Lavalin has gotten a C$253 million contract to help build the second phase of a demonstration Pebble Bed Modular Reactor (PBMR) for completion by 2014 in Koeberg, South Africa. The small advanced reactor, a South African national project, would produce 165 MWe and could be built in …

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Carnival of Space Week 68

Crowlspace hosts the carnival of space week 68. This site supplies an analysis of the technology that an interstellar capable civilization should have and an alternative to big antimatter rockets with mirror laser array propulsion Centauri Dreams considers the difficulties of interstellar travel. Crowlspace looks at antimatter propulsion. Check out the carnival of space week …

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A simple-to-make “superlens” can focus 10 times better than diffraction limit, microwaves so far, next 19-38 nm for visible light

A simple-to-make “superlens” can focus 10 times more sharply than a conventional lens. It could shrink the size of features on computer chips, or help power gadgets without wires. No matter how powerful a conventional lens, it cannot focus light down to more than about half its wavelength, the “diffraction limit”. So far they have …

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Sirtris, Sirtuin calorie restriction replication Life extension drug company, bought for $720 million

GlaxoSmithKline Plc, Europe’s biggest drugmaker, agreed to buy Sirtris Pharmaceuticals Inc. for about $720 million, adding an experimental treatment derived from red wine that’s thought to slow the effects of aging. Glaxo will pay $22.50 a share in cash for Sirtris, the London-based drugmaker said in an e-mailed statement. The offer is 84 percent more …

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Software and design innovation is enabling a 2 litre engine to perform like a 3-4 litre and save 27% on fuel

Better computer software is enabling a smaller engine to have higher performance and use 27% less fuel with low emissions Ricardo’s engine, called 2/4SIGHT, uses valves like a four-stroke engine, but in two-stroke mode, the engine keeps both the intake and exhaust valves open at the same time so that the fuel and air in …

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Carnival of Space week 29

Carnival of Space 29 is up. I contributed my article on the latest in rail guns which can be used as better big gun for navy ships or eventually for space launches. Hobbyspace reports on improvements to the Spacex rocket. Merlin 1C in its Falcon 9 first stage configuration has a thrust at sea level …

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Finex steel process better for environment and lower cost

Posco, south korean steel company, is preparing to expand abroad and overtake Nippon Steel of Japan as the world’s third-biggest steelmaker, its groundbreaking Finex technology is central to its plans. The South Korean company is a leader in revolutionising the steel- making process, becoming the first to commercialise next-generation Finex technology, which is both cleaner …

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A case in technological acceleration: faster communication makes higher resolution telescope

Higher speed communication between parts of a telescope and to scientists enables larger telescopes because “more pixels generate more data, and you have to have way to move more data around.” The boost in speed makes information processing faster among the James Webb Space Telescope’s (JWST) four science instruments as they “talk” to each other …

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