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About OldChemE

  • Rank
  • Birthday 07/13/1946

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    High desert Nevada USA
  • Interests
    All things science, golf, tutoring grandchildren, developing cartridge designs for old rifles (experimenting with various types of gun powder, various bullet designs, various ballistic results, target shooting), working with my hands (wood/metal).
  • College Major/Degree
    BsChe, MSNuclear
  • Favorite Area of Science
    Physical Sciences
  • Biography
    38 years engineering, 10 years teaching (Math & Science)
  • Occupation

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2422 profile views
  1. Is there a rational reason for religion?

    Depends on what you mean by 'rational.' One reason for religion: as children, we depend on our parents for guidance and protection, to feed us, care for us and shield us from the hard parts of life. Some people never get over that need for someone above them to provide that care and guidance-- so they turn to religion. Personally, I don't see the need, but I believe there are those who do.
  2. Amazon - Threat or Thrive?

    it's also worth noting that Amazon fills a niche that many stores don't. In our small town we have three grocery stores, one hardware, one ranch store, and three auto parts stores, and a number of tiny specialty stores. The small stores cannot viably carry a large inventory of less used items. There's just lots of stuff that we can only get by dealing with an internet connected supplier, such as Amazon. I gladly go to the local stores when I can quickly get what I want, but do a lot of online shopping for the rest.
  3. Neanderthal Rights

    They should have the same rights, since they are also humans. DNA studies tell us that neanderthal genes are present in much of society (I myself have 2.6% neanderthal genes). This clearly indicates that neanderthals were able to successfully mate with other early ancestors of the rest of humans-- by definition this means they are of the same species, but maybe a subgroup.
  4. How to identify an unknown element?

    or, if you don't want to go the mass spectrometer route basic inorganic chemistry works too-- pick up any good college level text on the subject and you will find lots of help. Be warned, however, inorganic chemistry is fun but it is also the hard way-- that's why mass spectrometers are used so much these days.
  5. What can be done with this Hawaii volcano?

    All you have to do to stop the property damage is get smart-- The volcano is not unknown or a mystery-- the mystery is why people insist on developing property in the path of the volcano.
  6. Origin of your UserName?

    Mine should be obvious-- I'm an Old Chemical Engineer (and Nuclear Engineer, and Former Square Dance caller, and briefly a teacher)-- and yes that's me in the avatar.
  7. A Hangover Care drink with science based ingredients

    Many years ago my university room mate, A graduate student in Chemistry, did his own research and claimed that the principle cause of a hangover was (a) dehydration and (b) the ketones and aldehydes that were present as side products of fermentation. To test his theory, we drank beverages using pure lab grade alcohol. It seemed to work. I never did any other research, but usually just woke up feeling thirsty and tired, but not hung over. I'm now too old for this sort of serious research, but heartily recommend it to hardier souls.
  8. True Meaning of Life

    Probably too unscientific for this forum, but I long pondered the meaning of life and decided, at least for me, "What is the meaning of life?" was the wrong question. I don't like being alone. The question for me was "Who is the meaning of life." Wife, family, friends
  9. Electrical conductivity of liquid argon

    If you think about it a little it makes good sense. Helium and Argon are Noble gasses. They have 8 electrons in their valence shell. They do not form ions particularly well and are largely non-reactive. You need ions in order to have significant electrical conductivity. Noble gasses don't conduct well.
  10. Cost, death, benefit analysis...

    I think the OP question is answered, but would point out that DNR decisions are not the only way government guidelines bring life to an end on a cost-benefit basis. A good friend of mine was diagnosed with operable prostate cancer at the age of 79. His doctor and insurance company refused to recommend or support prostate surgery. The basis given was that, according to US Government and Medicare protocols, a person of his age did not need the surgery as he would likely not die of the cancer anyway. This was, in effect, a cost benefit analysis. He was a healthy alert man of good mind. He could not afford the surgery on his own. Untreated, the cancer spread outside the prostate gland and killed him in 4 months.
  11. What is culture?

    Culture is most of the above, and maybe more. But i particularly agree that Language goes a long way to define culture. I lived and worked 6 years in the 'German' speaking part of Switzerland, and had to learn to gt along with the local dialect of German in order to do my job well. The biggest benefit to learning parts of the local language was that I began to understand the local jokes. So-- I became convinced that if you want to understand a culture you must learn enough language to understand the jokes. Culturally specific humor goes a long way toward encapsulating the essence of a culture.
  12. Typo likelihoods?

    Check out letters that are on opposite sides of a standard keyboard. when a touch-typist has to type one letter with the left hand and the next with the right (or vice versa) typos arise if the fingers of the two hands are not equal in speed of movement. For example, I have a tendency with words that end in 'tion' of typing 'iton' because my right hand seems to be a little faster (I am right handed). Similarly, I tend to type 'hte' instead of 'the' again because I seem to reach the letter h with my right hand a split-second faster than I can hit the 't' key with my left. I haven't done any research, so I don't know if this is just because I am right handed, or if it is just an age thing-- my left slowing down a little, or some other factor.
  13. Gun control, which side wins?

    Really?? https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170411085742.htm Cross-cultural study strengthens link between media violence, aggressive behavior Date: April 11, 2017 Source: Iowa State University Summary: Media violence affects aggressive behavior, compelling evidence demonstrates. This first-of-its-kind study, conducted in seven different countries, confirms six decades of research showing the effect is the same, regardless of culture.
  14. Gun control, which side wins?

    While I am coming very, very late to this thread, I notice the discussion bouncing back and forth on the question of what might be different about the US relative to other countries. How about entertainment?? I haven't researched in detail, but it seems to me that gun toting and shooting are high on the list of prominent TV programs and movies. Much more blood and gore than I recall from my youth. Video games, as well, come to mind (such as "Call of Duty"). Could it be that we have an increasing gun problem in the US also because we are making killing less upsetting? Could it be that we are becoming desensitized to the blood, gore and horror of taking lives? Could this be leading to a change in attitude of people with borderline attitudes being more willing to kill for the fun of it?
  15. The effect of additional neutrons

    and in addition to much already said, neutrons help to stabilize the nucleus by spreading out the repulsive effect of the charge on the protons. As you add neutrons, stability improves to a point, but with too many neutrons the dynamics of the nucleus (the parts don't stand still) reach a point where stability declines again. This is why you see a limited range of viable isotopes for elements.