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(Popular Science)   In 2020 when your laptop battery catches on fire and explodes, it will take out a whole city block   (popsci.com) divider line 59
    More: Cool, University of Missouri, orders of magnitude, nuclear powers, laptops, human hair, plutonium, isotopes, nanotechnology  
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7578 clicks; posted to Geek » on 08 Oct 2009 at 6:28 PM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2009-10-08 03:33:32 PM
Well, I'm sure that in 2020 plutonium will be available in every corner drug store, but in 2009 it's a little harder to come by!
 
2009-10-08 03:43:10 PM
jake_lex: Well, I'm sure that in 2020 plutonium will be available in every corner drug store, but in 2009 it's a little harder to come by!

--Golf clap--
 
2009-10-08 03:58:10 PM
RADIOACTIVE ISOTOPES DO NOT WORK THAT WAY!
 
2009-10-08 04:08:14 PM
How on earth did this go green without a Sarah Connor reference??
 
2009-10-08 04:10:50 PM
As long as we, as a society, get over the hangup on nuclear power. An entire generation was scared sh*tless by words like nuclear, atomic, and radioactive.

One of my good friends helped to send Cassini to Saturn. He once told me that one of the hardest parts of pitching the project to the administration was the fact they relied on 72.3 lbs of Plutonium for heat and electrical energy.

This kind of stuff has ridiculous energy density. You just have to have the cajones to use it.
 
2009-10-08 04:17:19 PM
John Nash: RADIOACTIVE ISOTOPES DO NOT WORK THAT WAY!

Oh, yeah? Says you and the laws of physics!
 
2009-10-08 04:18:37 PM
I thought we're all going to die in 2012. The movie trailers told me so.
 
2009-10-08 04:19:44 PM
As a side note, I'm really glad to see this article was given a "human hair" tag. You never know when you might feel like looking up a bunch of greenlit articles tangentially related to human hair...
 
2009-10-08 04:26:40 PM
dedekind_cut: This kind of stuff has ridiculous energy density. You just have to have the cajones to use it.

Of course if you have 72 pounds become vaporized above a populated area because of some accident with the launch, then you've severely sickened a large percentage of the population and screwed up the water supply. Plutonium is insanely toxic, regardless of it's radioactivity.
 
2009-10-08 04:44:19 PM
verbal_jizm: Of course if you have 72 pounds become vaporized above a populated area because of some accident with the launch, then you've severely sickened a large percentage of the population and screwed up the water supply. Plutonium is insanely toxic, regardless of it's radioactivity.

TFA doesn't say what isotope of what element is used.

That being said, your laptop would probably be just as hot (thermally) whether it's turned on or turned off. Not sure if that is a bonus or not.
 
2009-10-08 05:13:56 PM
pandabear: TFA doesn't say what isotope of what element is used.

Yeah, I was referring to dedekind_cut's comment, not TFA.
 
2009-10-08 06:14:34 PM
Anyone else feel like they were reading a Foundation novel there?
 
2009-10-08 06:21:39 PM
Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE
 
2009-10-08 06:36:34 PM
yogaFLAME: Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE

Yeah, but they're filled with Americium, so it's OK. Not that commie pinko socialist uranium that wants to take all your guns and kill your grandmother with them.
 
2009-10-08 06:38:03 PM
GAT_00: Anyone else feel like they were reading a Foundation novel there?

Came in here to say this.

My co-worker and I both flipped out when I read this from another source earlier.
 
2009-10-08 06:45:59 PM
Robo Beat: yogaFLAME: Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE

Yeah, but they're filled with Americium, so it's OK. Not that commie pinko socialist uranium that wants to take all your guns and kill your grandmother with them.


I thought Uranium was named after the Roman god Uranus.

Mendelevium, on the other hand, is named after a Russian. Who happened to invent the predecessor of the modern periodic table, comrade. And it's radioactive, too.
 
2009-10-08 06:57:22 PM
yogaFLAME: Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE

You're pee is radioactive, too...
 
2009-10-08 07:08:59 PM
So if I hook up about a hundred thousand of these I could power my house off the grid? Sweet.
 
2009-10-08 07:11:00 PM
maddogdelta: yogaFLAME: Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE

You're pee is radioactive, too...


Ah. So that must've been the reason my gf flipped out when I peed all over her last night.

Damn you internet, damn you for making me think that's what women want!
 
2009-10-08 07:13:05 PM
Saberus Terras: Robo Beat: yogaFLAME: Holy sh*t guys, YOUR SMOKE DETECTORS ARE RADIOACTIVE

Yeah, but they're filled with Americium, so it's OK. Not that commie pinko socialist uranium that wants to take all your guns and kill your grandmother with them.

I thought Uranium was named after the Roman god Uranus.

Mendelevium, on the other hand, is named after a Russian. Who happened to invent the predecessor of the modern periodic table, comrade. And it's radioactive, too.



Good God. How deep does the rabbit hole go?
 
2009-10-08 07:14:11 PM
thompsonius: How on earth did this go green without a Sarah Connor reference??

images4.wikia.nocookie.net
/hot like a T-850 power cell
 
2009-10-08 07:15:01 PM
 
2009-10-08 07:15:55 PM
joegekko: Ah. So that must've been the reason my gf flipped out when I peed all over her last night.

Damn you internet, damn you for making me think that's what women want!

You're probably just doing it wrong. You should try again tonight, you know, just to be sure.

If you videotape it, I'll review your technique for a nominal fee. Practice makes perfect.


D'oh! HTMfaLe!
 
2009-10-08 07:25:27 PM
won't need a laptop in 2020 because my brain will be connected to GoogleBrain wirelessly.

my wireless connection will be 2,234 GB/second...up. down will be infinite.
 
2009-10-08 07:25:59 PM
Finally, my plans will be realized!

\Evil laugh.
 
2009-10-08 07:26:17 PM
Why are they comparing a "penny sized" battery to a dime in the picture?
 
2009-10-08 07:28:17 PM
TFA: Researchers Develop a Penny-Sized Nuclear Battery

...then there's a picture of said battery, next to a dime. Which is pretty much the same size as a penny, but the battery is twice as big. DOUBLE FAIL.
 
2009-10-08 07:35:53 PM
Cue the "This thread (and battery) heats my balls pic"
 
2009-10-08 07:46:15 PM
cptjeff: Finally, my plans will be realized!

\Evil laugh.


Ha. I'll be safe in my refrigerator.
 
2009-10-08 08:03:50 PM
GAT_00: Anyone else feel like they were reading a Foundation novel there?

LOL Not at the time, but now that you've mentioned it.

I did make a comment to my GF about the difference between this tech and "traditional" nuclear reactors, though. The Priests of Anacreon occurred to me when I said it.

/almost named my current Fark incarnation Salvor Hardin.
 
2009-10-08 08:08:39 PM
Nem Wan: thompsonius: How on earth did this go green without a Sarah Connor reference??


/hot like a T-850 power cell


Thank you both.
 
2009-10-08 08:16:39 PM
In 2020 when your laptop battery catches on fire and explodes, it will take out a whole city block

Subby says that like it's a bad thing...
 
2009-10-08 08:23:18 PM
maddogdelta: In 2020 when your laptop battery catches on fire and explodes, it will take out a whole city block

Subby says that like it's a bad thing...


well, heck, he could have said something in the leagues of if it happened with a Mac, the first thing that people would claim is that it's a feature.

iNuke ?
 
2009-10-08 08:36:47 PM
joegekko: joegekko: Ah. So that must've been the reason my gf flipped out when I peed all over her last night.

Damn you internet, damn you for making me think that's what women want!

You're probably just doing it wrong. You should try again tonight, you know, just to be sure.

If you videotape it, I'll review your technique for a nominal fee. Practice makes perfect.

D'oh! HTMfaLe!


lol!
 
2009-10-08 09:05:33 PM
verbal_jizm: Plutonium is insanely toxic, regardless of it's radioactivity.

um, r us sure it isnt toxic BECAUSE of its radioactivity?
Link (new window)

/kids these days
 
2009-10-08 09:32:54 PM
Cereal Killer: jake_lex: Well, I'm sure that in 2020 plutonium will be available in every corner drug store, but in 2009 it's a little harder to come by!

--Golf clap--


I found it somewhat derivative of something Steve Martin did about 30 years ago, but whatever....
 
2009-10-08 10:12:10 PM
verbal_jizm: Of course if you have 72 pounds become vaporized above a populated area because of some accident with the launch

That's why they don't launch rockets over populated areas.

/Just like a bottle rocket, the Titan IV has 'Aim away from face' written on the side
//And if it doesn't say that, it should.
 
2009-10-08 10:19:35 PM
"THERE IS NO DANGER! REPEAT, THERE IS NO DANGER! FIVE SUBNUCLEAR CELLS ARE DORMANT, TWO SUBNUCLEAR CELLS ARE NOW IN SHUTDOWN PHASE, ONE SUBNUCLEAR CELL IS OPERATING AT TWO PER CENT CAPACITY. THESE CELLS ARE OF NO VALUE! REPEAT, THESE CELLS ARE OF NO VALUE! REPORT LOCATION TO NORTH CENTRAL POSITRONICS, LIMITED! CALL 1-900-44! THE CODE WORD FOR THIS DEVICE IS 'SHARDIK.' REWARD IS OFFERED! REPEAT, REWARD IS OFFERED!"
 
2009-10-08 10:26:35 PM
verbal_jizm: dedekind_cut: This kind of stuff has ridiculous energy density. You just have to have the cajones to use it.

Of course if you have 72 pounds become vaporized above a populated area because of some accident with the launch, then you've severely sickened a large percentage of the population and screwed up the water supply. Plutonium is insanely toxic, regardless of it's radioactivity.


They aren't shooting the plutonium into space in a Coke can. RTGs are designed with launch accidents in mind.

"Each RTG contains 18 separate heat source modules, and each module encases four plutonium-238 pellets. The modules are designed to survive a range of postulated accidents: launch vehicle explosion or fire, reentry into the atmosphere followed by land or water impact, and post-impact situations. An outer covering of graphite provides protection against the structural, thermal, and eroding environments of a potential reentry. Additional graphite components provide impact protection, while iridium cladding of the actual fuel cells provides post-impact containment. The fuel is in the form of plutonium-238 dioxide, a ceramic material which is resistant to fracturing." (new window)

There's no real danger of plutonium dust being released by a launch or re-entry accident with an RTG.
 
2009-10-08 11:38:01 PM
verbal_jizm: Of course if you have 72 pounds become vaporized above a populated area because of some accident with the launch, then you've severely sickened a large percentage of the population and screwed up the water supply. Plutonium is insanely toxic, regardless of it's radioactivity.

People breed like rats, though. In 20 years you could never tell the difference.
 
2009-10-08 11:58:29 PM
cptjeff: Finally, my plans will be realized!

\Evil laugh.


img.photobucket.com
 
2009-10-09 12:22:01 AM
...and when several 1000 get thrown away?
 
2009-10-09 01:38:05 AM
And one day the Americans will make a boiler so large it will kill us all when it blows.
 
2009-10-09 01:42:21 AM
nutkick_42: And one day the Americans will make a boiler so large it will kill us all when it blows.

Um....what?
 
Ask
2009-10-09 03:10:43 AM
Fill16: ...and when several 1000 get thrown away?

Terrorists can salvage them to make nukular weapons. Even the disposal becomes easier with plutonium.
 
2009-10-09 03:20:39 AM
As long as don't have to buy another AA, AAA, C or D battery.


/and they should come with the damn things I buy...
 
2009-10-09 04:42:33 AM
rogue49: As long as don't have to buy another AA, AAA, C or D battery.


/and they should come with the damn things I buy...


Just buy rechargeable batteries; we have a couple dozen or so of them at home, and it has saved us a substantial amount of money from having to buy normal single-use batteries on a regular basis.
 
2009-10-09 04:51:52 AM
Cool, but call me when I can get 0% APR on one of these:

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2009-10-09 05:57:06 AM
mud_shark: I found it somewhat derivative of something Steve Martin did about 30 years ago, but whatever....

Steve Martin? The politician?
 
2009-10-09 09:17:04 AM
Step one: Find a piece of metal
Step two: Irradiate one side of the metal
Step three: Harness the voltage that occurs between the sides

It's usually a very small voltage and I'm not sure that this is something you'd want around your person due, but if they can get the radiation down to background levels even during failure I can't see a problem with this.
 
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