SH3RL0CK

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1. Kender Solar Engine

This is incorrect. If you pump it into a box at x pressure, it increases in pressure to X, not to 10X. Otherwise I wouldn't need an aircompressor to air up the tires on my car as I could do so by breathing into the tire. Now certainly a temperature change can modify the pressure, but we have already gone over why this doesn't work... No, you don't have 10X as much pressure unless you also apply a very considerable amount of heat energy in accordance with PV=nRT. Certainly one of us does not seem to understand. But you brought up the Kender engine and they specifically say they use Helium. Therefore their system must be a closed system, as I said, because our atmosphere is not helium.
2. Kender Solar Engine

The Kender engine uses helium, therefore it must be a closed system as I am very certain I am breathing a combination of Nitrogen and Oxygen and other trace gases with virtually no helium. As a closed system, yes, we are simply pumping the gas around inside a box, or multiple boxes. By making it complex, we increase the chances (intentional or not) of introducing a mathematical fallacy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mathematical_fallacy
3. How would you amend the Constitution?

why? That would be good. I'd also add a requirement that Senators must be selected by the governor or legislature of that particular state. That way the Senator would represent the interests of the state (as I believe was the intent) rather than the people of the state. That would go a long way, IMO, towards limiting the number of unfunded federal mandates to the states for example.
4. Kender Solar Engine

Where did the 200psi gas come from? Under my scenario, I am going from 14psi (standard atmospheric) to a vacuum of 0 psi; then refilling at 14 psi. This was intentional to keep it simple. Adding a third pressure increases the complexity of your example. But lets take your example: For simplicity, lets have a closed system using an ideal gas. It takes energy to get to 200 psi. For the sake of argument, lets say 1J. Through the turbine, lets say we get the 1J back and the gas is at 14psi. You can't get more than the 1J back because that was all the energy input into the system, this energy was stored in the "P" part of the ideal gas equation then transfered to heat (T) and mechanical energy (V) by passing through the turbine. If its contains 1J of energy stored in the form of heat (1J of T), then we gained no energy from the turbine (0J of V). If we got all 1J of energy by harvesting it with the turbine (1J of V), then its not heated (0J of T). This is something you seem to be overlooking. In the formula PV=nRT, we harvest the energy in the PV part as the turbine in the form of mechanical energy. We either mechanically change PV (for an energy loss or gain) or change T (for an energy loss or gain). There is no free energy from this formula. If we DID gain all 1J back with the turbine, then what good would it do to put all 1J of energy into the gas to re-compress it to 200 psi? Neither do I know how to explain it simpler...where and how does PV=nRT give us free energy?
5. Kender Solar Engine

So if I understand you, you are saying it takes less energy to draw a vacuum in a box than you gain by filling the box up again? Lets assume a 100% efficient vacuum pump that uses 1J of energy to pull all the air out of the box. Applying PV= nRT, there is now an energy differntial of 1J of potential energy that can be gained by letting air back into the system, stored in the "n" component (fewer number of atoms) and "T" component (perhaps the overall temperature of the box dropped). So, now if we let gas back into this box, the system gains the 1J of energy from the box in the form of the "n" components (more gas in the box) and in the "T" component (perhaps the overall temperture increases once again). So where is the extra "free" energy coming from? Are you claiming that, assuming the box cooled and some energy is stored in the "T" component of the equation, you will let the external environment warm the box up to room temperature. Then the box will become warmer than room temperature once gas is released into this vacuum (PV= nRT and some energy added to the "T" part of the equation) and you will harvest this extra energy? If so, I would suggest the problems here would be 1) most of the energy is in the "n" part of the equation so there is very little "T" energy to reclaim by this method. 2) A real vacuum pump would have losses greatly exceeding this potential gain. 3) It would be necessary to harvest energy only during the warm up phase, otherwise you would lose this potential energy gain during the "cool down" when drawing the vacuum. I'm not sure how you could switch off a potential energy harvester like this but there could be ways to do this. 4) Even assuming 100% efficient pumping and energy harvesting, there is still energy losses associated with maintenance and repair of the valves, connections, pump, energy harvesting equipment, etc. that may exceed this energy gain (its going to be quite small). You would be much better off installing a windmill or solar panel to harvest the available energy in the environment.
6. Kender Solar Engine

and I suspect a much, much, much higher initial pressure than 14 psi... but regardless how do you "decrease the pressure" without applying some kind of energy to the system? PV=nRT. If PV is constant (and R is constant), then if n decreases, T must increase. Of course in the real world, removing some of the gas (decreasing n) without changing either the pressure or volume is going to be a trick. One way to do this is to increase the temperature by applying some energy that is external to the system If you wanted to decrease both n and T (or decrease T and keep n constant), then you will have to increase the pressure and/or volume. How do you propose to modify either the pressure or volume of a system without applying energy? which requires energy to do which results in the "cooled" gas heating up much more quickly than the "14 psi" gas. The reason being that there is much more gas at 14 psi than what was "cooled" through the valve. PV = nRT, in a closed system PV and R is constant so n must be reduced proportionally to T. When the numbers are run, I'm sure the energy input to force the pressure decrease to 1psi will equal the amount of cooling to the 14 psi gas, plus losses. In an open system, the "cooled gas" cannot cool down the gas at 14 psi since this is essentially an infinite amount of gas. Which means the following: doesn't happen. At least not in a way that any energy is gained. And since there is bound to be energy lost due to inefficiencies, this system just spends a lot of energy to do nothing.
7. Kender Solar Engine

One difficulty in this, of course, is to prevent these same molecules from receiving energy from other molecules at the same time...its not like heat transfer is a one way street. PV=nRT is a good equation to start with determining how to change the temperature of an ideal gas (either increase P or V; or conversely reduce the amount of gas present in the system n, to increase the temperature). In all practical cases, energy must be applied to force the molecules to do something they wouldn't have otherwise done.
8. Ultra fast train system for the UK

Everyone seems to be forgetting that trains, while efficient, rarely go exactly where people need to go. In my particular case, I can drive to work in about an hour. Or I can take mass transit (there are several possible combinations of trains and buses, all of which wind up with the same time) in about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. First, I can't afford the extra time required for mass transit. But my point really is that any energy savings mass transit has over automobiles could be lost due to the extra distance involved.
9. I sometimes have difficulty responding to GW deniers.

I am skeptical, but less about the "A" in AGW and more about the bottom line. What is our best course of action? We do not know. In my mind, this question is really two fold. 1) We need to establish with certainty the realationship between our actions and climate change. We need to know that if we do X then Y happens. The climate modeling that currently exists isn't currently capable of doing this with any certainty, IMO. 2) Once we answer #1 above (and I am opposed to any serious spending until then), we need to determine how much we are willing and capable of spending to mitigate the climate change. This needs to be a political question and not a scientific question. Perhaps the best course of action is to do nothing. Perhaps it is a few minor lifestyle changes. Perhaps a return to the stone age (though I myself disagree as in this case I would probably either starve or freeze during the next winter). To answer your question of how to deal with a "denier" you first need to determine exactly what is being denied. In JohnB's case, he is denying some claims regarding the "A" in AGW. In my case, I reject some (most until we understand the science better) of the proposed "solutions" to climate change. A debate between either of us would necessarily be different, as it would be to a true "denier" as we have differing viewpoints.
10. Evolution vs Creationism

No, it seemingly does not. Well, there is a difference in that no one seems to be saying evolution never happened until 1858. There are, unfortunately, creationists stating there was no life before 7,000 years ago. This does not invalidate all creationists, however. There are many with a creationist view that does not conflict with science (i.e. a 13B y.o. universe, 4B y.o. earth, evolution etc.).
11. What is the justification for spending such large amounts of money?

Well, I have to admit I must have mis-remembered my source or confused it with something else as it is pretty much in line with your information. As such, I retract my statement. Not that I am in favor of tax increases. I am of the opinion the real problem is that our leaders have a spending problem and I would prefer the government spend our money more wisely.
12. For those who like potato guns

I assume you have done the math regarding the expected pressure that this refinery piping will see due to the internal explosion? And that you have compared this pressure with the ratings for "schedule 40" piping? Do you have any prototype pressure and hydrostatic testing? I wouldn't mind seeing these calculations and/or since I am a bit skeptical that your "schedule 40" piping will sufficiently contain the potential explosion. Which of course, could result in the rupture of the piping and the potential for property damage or even loss of life. Especially considering you stated People generally do not throw away quality stuff, making the aforementioned pressure and hydrostatic tests pretty important. After all, playing with fire (or explosions) is fun only until someone gets hurt.
13. What is the justification for spending such large amounts of money?

I am surprised by this as I have seen credible information to the contrary (about a week ago). Right now I am quite busy and don't have time to look up my original source unfortunately. I'll try to do so when I get a little more time.
14. What is the justification for spending such large amounts of money?

So are you saying the economy went south because the Democrats took control of Cogress? You cannot deny the great economic boom of the 1980's (under Reagan and Tip O'Neil), of the 1990's (under Clinton and Gingrich) and of a good economy during most of the early part of the 2000's (under Bush and a Republican congress). I suppose if Bush gets all the blame for this current recession, then we need to assign the blame for the 2001-2 recession to Clinton, the 1992-3 recession to GHW Bush, and the 1980-82 recession to Carter.
15. What is the justification for spending such large amounts of money?

What is more critical than the overall debt, is the debt as a percentage of the GDP. If you owe $1M that would be somewhat of a problem for someone making$100k a year. But its manageable for someone making \$1B a year. A rising debt isn't a problem if the GDP grows faster. But as you imply, it would be far better still to have savings rather than debt. Which is why it is important that the economic recovery happen sooner and stronger, rather than later and weaker. Too bad no one really knows how to make this happen. As an aside, I'm neither republican nor democrat. There is little fiscal difference between them, both parties have shown they have a spending problem. Democrats spend, and raise taxes to cover the shortfall. Republicans spend, and whose business-friendly policies raise the GDP to cover the shortfall. IMO, we got lucky in 2000 when Clinton (D) raised taxes and Congress ® enacted policies to raise the GDP resulting in an actual reduction of savings (the last time this happened).
16. I have to make a time piece without using electricity.

Never mind counting the drops, just measure the volume of the water that has drained. That way you only need to take one measurement at one time. You can also calibrate the water volume to account for the slower drip rate once the bucket level has dropped (due to a longer timeframe).
17. What is the justification for spending such large amounts of money?

Short term, the USA looks like a bad investment, but a longer view should be taken. But what is the alternative? As Greece has recently shown, the Euro isn't necessarily a better investment. The public debt of the USA as a % of GDP is similar to, or less than, other Western nations. China is already investing in itself heavily, but the lack of transparency and the probable corruption makes China (and a very large part of the developing world) a risk as well. So where does China, OPEC, Japan, and Russia invest given the USA may be the best of a bunch of bad choices? I agree the USA needs to be more financially responsible, and I do think that will happen. The sunset of the Bush tax cuts will help regarding the public debt immensely (though I would prefer a reduction in the overall size of the government). People are starting to hit the AMT, and that trend will accelerate in the coming decade which is going to greatly increase the IRS revenue. When the economic recovery happens, the tax revenues will greatly increase and that will help. And, when the recovery happens, the lack of stimulus spending will also help. And, the winding down of the Iraq war will help. I don't see a real problem in the medium term. In the long term, medicare and social security will bury us, unless the USA decides to not fully pay this obligation (what I think will be the resolution to the pending SS and medicare crisis).
18. Kender Solar Engine

TomBooth, Thanks for clarifying the consensus on workable and non-workable designs. I should add the design of heat pumps and the like are quite complex. More complex than can be adequately addressed here. Again, if you are serious about this, enrollment in an engineering college would be advisable. I think perhaps I did get your idea confused with the Kender engine...your plan certainly has more merit than their design.
19. Kender Solar Engine

If you are serious about this idea, it behooves you to study and learn this science at least as well as Mr. Skeptic. I would suggest you enroll in an engineering college somewhere. That you lack an understanding of PV=nRT indicates to me that you have a lot to learn about this field. Other than from yourself, who exactly is confident this idea will work? Everyone except yourself (and the fine people at Kender, apparently) on this thread are quite confident this will not work. The people thinking this will not work have backed up their beliefs by mathematical equations. The people thinking it will work have a more nebulous arguement that I, for one, am not buying. The math does not lie.
20. I have to make a time piece without using electricity.

How accurate must this be? A sundial would actually be sufficient if accuracy wasn't a concern.
21. half isn't balance

He did say so publically early on. And he still had much support, perhaps because of these statements. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mein_kampf On extermination of the Jews: and see this part: Granted the functionalism viewpoint also has merit. On waging war against the whole world:
22. half isn't balance

I disagree and suggest you research this further, many of their policies were quite socialistic in nature. For starters, look at:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazism I won't deny the Nazi party had some right wing tendencies, but in reality it was a mix of both todays conservative and todays liberal politics. Some left-leaning tendencies: (emphasis mine) Additionally, Nazi Germany had a National Health Care Plan http://www.thefreemanonline.org/columns/national-health-care-medicine-in-germany-1918-1945/ And strict gun-control laws http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_politics_in_Germany IMO, the Nazi party would not easily fit in either the political left or political right today.
23. Kender Solar Engine

if you don't think this equation is useful then I don't think we can help you with your questions. Study up on this equation, Sayonora is showing you where you are wrong.
24. World may not be warming (news article)

I agree, clearly the world is warmer now than in the past. The real question that is unanswered is what should we do, now we know the earth is warming? What I question based on the information in the links is the accuracy of the projections; because the severity of the problem affects what we should do. Do we need a crash program to address this, or do we have time to gradually phase in a more sustainable society? These relevations do not give me confidence we have quantified the severity of the problem ... as for I also agree, and since we have drifted off topic I'll stop it here.
25. Jobs of the Future

Glad to hear it. Spammers are getting sneakier, I don't like to waste my time with them.
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