Living on Mars, a pipe dream

Living on Mars, a pipe dream

Some ‘visionaries’ foresee the human race living on other planets. Sure, in principle nothing wrong with it.

However to really have any chance of survival in the long term that planet has to conform to very restricted parameters, as conditions found on earth since after millions of years having evolved as a species on earth our bodies are designed to live within the boundaries as set by the earth’s conditions.

Even a small relatively deviation in temperature is enough to make human life very hard reason why so few people live on the poles and why the human race had it’s origins nearer the equator.

We need a temperature within a narrow band to survive.

Now take for example the planet Mars.

It’s dead. It died long time ago, it’s atmosphere consists of for us unbreathable gases (mostly CO2) at about half earth’s pressure making surface life impossible.

It doesn’t have a revolving iron core so no magnetic field to deflect hard radiation making surface life impossible

The water content of the planet consists mostly of permafrost at <250 kelvin making the availability of liquid water near enough impossible.

The surface consists of oxidized rock and a good layer of micro particle dust making articulated earth like machines of any usable size a nearly impossible task to keep operational.

The same dust will enter into any construction made by us and in the long term cause any machine or living entity being perfused by that dust.

This dust is mostly iron oxide. Surface of Mars As an abrasive compound it really does the trick. It is toxic in the amounts found in Mars surface and atmosphere.

It is certainly a compound which will destroy any larger machine due to it destroying bearings and being and electric conductor short circuiting any electronic device, which cannot with our present or to be foreseen technology be totally sealed off.

Than the daily dose of radiation. Already the even the shortest Earth-Mars round trip would be about 0.66 sievert. This amount is like receiving a whole-body CT scan every five or six days. Conditions on Mars aren’t any better due to lack of dense atmosphere and magnetic field.  Radiation on Mars 

So only subsoil habitation is possible and than at great depth. In order to construct a habitat suitable to sustain multiple generations we need to excavate about the size of the current habited surface of earth which including the surface needed for agriculture (based on 2018 population) Earth has a land surface of 149 million km².

Which needs to be heated since the planet is at <250 kelvin. It also needs to have daylight lighting, earth like atmosphere and pressure. The energy needed to just begin to excavate a small colony, heat it, pressurize it and give it earth like atmosphere is beyond calculation. And how does one obtain this energy? Solar panels won’t work since the sun is to distant, windmills won’t work due to the low density of the atmosphere.

Only one energy source would be direct matter to energy conversion as in nuclear fission and/or fusion. But it would have to be a really huge reactor, or field of reactors to generate this energy. But how do you build that on Mars? How do you build the infrastructure? For that you need energy you don’t have yet.

In other words, to have a real self sustaining colony on Mars which won’t cause inbreeding within one generation you need to deplete all resources on Earth, send them to Mars, invent robots that will reliably prefabricate the living quarters and other infrastructure. After the decennia it takes to do that send at least 100.000 of humans of diverse populations to Mars and hope they won’t kill each other on the trip and the cosmic radiation doesn’t cause a significant mutation.

In conclusion the ‘visionary’ which proposes making Mars an alternative for Earth suffers from an overly active imagination and sincere lack of factual knowledge/comprehension thereof






Germany and it’s renewable energy usage

Germany and it’s renewable energy usage

Due to the significant drop in nuclear power consumption, Germany has been unable to reduce fossil fuel consumption as much as previously hopedThis shortfall is especially the case with natural gas, which has been a central cause for concern given the political leverage held by massive Russian exports to Germany, and to the European Union more broadly. On this issue, progress has been limited, and seems to be getting worse.

As the table below demonstrates, Russian natural gas exports to Germany are only increasing, and show no signs of abatement, mirroring anecdotal reports and the steady progression of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

Total imports, including those from Russia (except a 2011-2012 decrease due to supply diversions resulting from extreme cold weather), have increased while both domestic production and consumption have decreased.

In 2016, Germany sourced over 46 percent of its natural gas imports from Russia, up from 40 percent in 2006. The other two key suppliers, Norway, and the Netherlands, both maintained relatively stable exports over the period examined.



In short, Germany’s Energiewende is big failure. Having spent 100s of billions of euros on ‘alternative energy production’ the only result is that the consumer end price for electricity risen to amongst the highest in Europe ( What German households pay for power ) whilst dependence on fossil fuels has augmented.

Worst still, due to the unpredictability of their alternative energy Germany has been forced to pay other nations to please pretty please take their surplus energy of their hands to prevent their infrastructure glowing red from overproduction whilst at the same time having to pay spot prices to import energy those nights the sun doesn’t shine, those cloudy days it also doesn’t do much, those days the wind doesn’t blow or those days it doesn’t blow at all or to strong.

Inevitable conclusion: their endlösung for energy production doesn’t work in real life.


Fat is not so bad, nor is alcohol

Fat is not so bad, nor is alcohol

The research, led by University of California neurologist Claudia Kawas, tracked 1,700 nonagenarians enrolled in the 90+ Study that began in 2003 to explore impacts of daily habits on longevity.

Researchers discovered that subjects who drank about two glasses of beer or wine a day were 18% less likely to experience a premature death, the Independent reports.

Meanwhile, participants who exercised 15 to 45 minutes a day, cut the same risk by 11%.

“I have no explanation for it, but I do firmly believe that modest drinking improves longevity,” Kawas stated over the weekend at the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual conference in Austin, Texas.

Other factors were found to boost longevity, including weight. Participants who were slightly overweight — but not obese — cut their odds of an early death by 3%.

“It’s not bad to be skinny when you’re young but it’s very bad to be skinny when you’re old,” Kawas noted in her address.

Subjects who kept busy with a daily hobby two hours a day were 21% less likely to die early, while those who drank two cups of coffee a day cut that risk by 10%.

Further study is needed to determine how habits impact longevity beyond people’s genetic makeups.

More renewables mean less stable grids, researchers find

More renewables mean less stable grids, researchers find

Grid stability is likely to be increasingly challenged as power distribution moves from a centralized to a more decentralized model, new research has found.

According to a paper published this week in the journal Nature Energy by researchers from Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and the UK’s Queen Mary University of London, integrating growing numbers of renewable power installations and microgrids onto the grid can result in larger-than-expected fluctuations in grid frequency.

The researchers collected data from grids of various sizes in Germany, France, the UK, Finland, Mallorca, Japan and the US. Based on this data, they developed mathematical models that “can establish the influence of making the grid smaller or of adding a bit more renewable energy” in order to aid in planning, said Professor Christian Beck of Queen Mary University, one of the paper’s co-authors.

The team found that small grids like Mallorca’s displayed larger frequency deviations than larger grids, such as continental Europe’s. And comparing different regions showed that a larger share of renewable generation resulted in larger frequency deviations.

“The grid operators want the frequency to be 50 Hz, but it fluctuates a little bit around this all the time,” said Beck. “We can now establish the probability that the deviation is more than 2 per cent or so, which is a big deviation, and we found that the probability of that is higher than expected from pure random fluctuation.”

Beck told PEi that the research team’s “first surprise was that energy trading had a significant impact on the grids studied” after Germany’s grid and others displayed particularly large fluctuations every 15 minutes, corresponding to spot market trading.

“The grid frequency had big jumps every 15-30 minutes,” he said, “and it wasn’t clear to us before that trading has such a big effect. Most people were worried about renewables because they are unpredictable and certainly produce fluctuations in frequency. Trading gives a similar order of, or stronger, fluctuation, which hadn’t been clear to us or, I think, to most people.”

Comparatively, the research showed that a larger share of renewable generation in a given region resulted in larger deviations from the standard 50 Hz. For example, the UK, with more renewables than the US, also had larger frequency deviations. To integrate more renewables onto the UK grid, the research team recommends increasing primary control and demand response.

“The UK is somewhat special,” Beck said, “in that it has a much higher component of wind power contributing, and it also has an overall smaller grid than the rest of Europe. Still, frequency fluctuations caused by trading seem to be at least as relevant as fluctuations caused by renewables.”

Asked about the effects on microgrids, he said that “the maths allows us to extrapolate the effects depending on the size of the grid. If we extrapolate our results to smaller grids, then indeed we would be implying that the effects are more pronounced there, and if people wish to have a microgrid then they need to relax a little bit the conditions they demand on constant frequency.”

“I don’t think we are saying anything against microgrids,” he added. “You just have to complement them with suitable control strategies to make sure the frequency is constant enough.”


The idea that by some miraculous yet to be invented ‘smart’ grid this problem can be overcome belongs to the domain of futuristic solutions. Obviously the more failure prone advanced electronics you add to the problem, the solution becomes a problem. 

And all this still is based on the current situation without having provisions for the enormous extra load Electric Vehicles will put on that grid.

If ever the general transport currently based on hydrocarbons where to be replaced by electric the current grid and further infrastructure would buckle at the first time the  47 quadrillion Btu in 2012 to 94 quadrillion Btu in 2040 for the transport sector alone would be trying to get that of any electric grid, being it smart or super-intelligent.

No dose effect on mortality by particulate matter PM2.5

No dose effect on mortality by particulate matter PM2.5


Enstrom’s study: Fine Particulate Matter and Total Mortality

As with the fake science ‘supporting’ AGW this latest effort to scare people into paying exorbitant eco taxes for non existent problems begins to unravel fast.

It’s really amazing how time and again ecowarriors try to get away with baseless fake science in order to get their hand in your wallet. 

The tactic is always the same: propose a very scary problem, pump it up with hundreds of taxpayer/donation funded studies whose premise is: Here is the desired outcome now please write us a paper saying it is so.

As with the air quality standards. Air in the Western World became so clean over the last decades it’s having a measurable effect of the amount of sunlight actually striking the ground. Standards for what constitutes ‘clean air’ are now so strict that nature itself can’t adhere to it. Natural causes of air ‘pollution’ (hey we as a species managed to overcome much worse over the last million+ years and we prosper) are worldwide the main driver.

Just as with CO2 not being a pollutant but a highly necessary trace gas for vegetation so is PM2.5 a in greater part a natural phenomenon we live with since time memorial.


Nuclear drive trains for long haul transport

Nuclear drive trains for long haul transport

Despite the obvious fact that CO2 has no discernible influence on climate nor weather.

Despite the fact higher CO2 in the atmosphere leads to a literally greener planet.

Doom sayers profess any CO2 content in the atmosphere higher than 350 ppm will be our downfall. Regardless that farmers using enclosed growing facilities upping the CO2 to 1000 ppm to get the best crop results without killing the workers by some incomprehensible mechanism part of humanity is convinced that more CO2 in the atmosphere is the cause of global warming, global cooling and changes in weather patterns.


Assuming that what are the alternatives? Wind and solar are too independent on natures whims and the day/night cycle to be a reliable source of sustainable energy as United Kingdom/Germany/Australia and many other nations have empirically proven.

So what is a real alternative? Only one. Direct matter->energy conversion. At this point in time the most efficient one, nuclear fusion, is unfortunately not yet within our level of technical prowess.

So the next best thing, Nuclear Fission, is our only realistic alternative to wind/solar. It delivers reliable energy with the least accidents per capita per kw/h per person.

How does this tie in with transport? Well since space-stations need a safe, reliable powerplants the development of those come to being.

Examples which could be adapted to transport are:

The SAFE-400 space fission reactor (Safe Affordable Fission Engine) is a 400 kWt HPS of 100 kWe to power a space vehicle using two Brayton power systems – gas turbines driven directly by the hot gas from the reactor. Heat exchanger outlet temperature is 880°C. The reactor has 127 identical heatpipe modules made of molybdenum, or niobium with 1% zirconium. Each has three fuel pins 1 cm diameter, nesting together into a compact hexagonal core 25 cm across. The fuel pins are 70 cm long (fuelled length 56 cm), the total heatpipe length is 145 cm, extending 75 cm above the core, where they are coupled with the heat exchangers. The core with reflector has a 51 cm diameter. The mass of the core is about 512 kg and each heat exchanger is 72 kg. SAFE has also been tested with an electric ion drive.

A smaller version of this kind of reactor is the HOMER-15 – the Heatpipe-Operated Mars Exploration Reactor. It is a15 kW thermal unit similar to the larger SAFE model, and stands 2.4 metres tall including its heat exchanger and 3 kWe Stirling engine (see above). It operates at only 600°C and is therefore able to use stainless steel for fuel pins and heatpipes, which are 1.6 cm diameter. It has 19 sodium heatpipe modules with 102 fuel pins bonded to them, 4 or 6 per pipe, and holding a total of 72 kg of fuel. The heatpipes are 106 cm long and fuel height 36 cm. The core is hexagonal (18 cm across) with six BeO pins in the corners. The total mass of reactor system is 214 kg, and diameter is 41 cm.


With minimal investment/longevity/efficiency as compared to EV Long Haul vehicles those vehicles equipped with such an derived reactor could not only drive around for 10 years on a single refuel, they could also be powered to haul long haul truck trains as currently being used in Australia.

Even better, when not being used as transport vehicle the onboard reactor could be fitted with a generator and supply electricity to the local grid.

All it needs is an open mind and a reasonable amount of engineering capability

Hubris, Homo Sapiens undoing

Hubris, Homo Sapiens undoing

This book  as practically all other books/studies presume that homo sapiens is the supreme criterion by which to judge other species. This is evidently an extreme example of anthropocentrism. Within it’s own pov many more animals are far superior within their own context than homo sapiens.
In the realms of the disinterested natural evolutionary world homo sapiens is in evolutionary terms a dead end branch. It took the species a mere 100.000 years to arrive at the point where it is on the brink of multiple factors leading to extinction.
Unbridled procreation, with a distinct tendency to self-destruction coupled a primal brain which controls an unrivaled capacity for mass destruction is not going to able to compete with even mere jellyfish which outlive us by 500 million years.
Homo sapiens barely overcame in evolutionary time scales, it’s gene pool severely polluted by not only being descendant of the relative few that survived the multiple natural disasters such as the ice ages but nowadays by medicinal progress.
Eugenetics is a dirty word because it was abused by an ideology of the 20th century but anyone with a sound mind can reason that keeping non-viable specimens in that gene pool only serves to pollute it even more.

Homo sapiens has effectively put itself outside of the natural selection mechanism which as a mechanism caused the best specimens to survive and the weakest succumb. By intervening in this mechanism of we barely understand it’s long term implications it would surprise me if homo sapiens as a species would reach a million years let alone the crocodile with a brain the size of a walnut which so far made to 200 million years.

Hubris will be it’s undoing long before