h a l f b a k e r y
Not so much a thought experiment as a single neuron misfire.
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10% of the energy from fusion in
the core of the Sun is carried
away by neutrinoes. That means at
the earth they have a flux
density of about 136 watts/square
No known material interacts with
neutrinoes. That might make this
idea a non-starter.
However, supposing one could find
(I suggest an ordinary
turbine plated with stuff from a
neutron star) it will have many
advantages over solar or wind
You can put it anywhere: in the
wastes of siberia, over the floes
of the antartic, down a disused
mine; because anywhere and
everywhere, the neutrino
flux does penetrate.
Some boffins have surmised that
the neutrino flux is far greater
than we imagine, such that the
flux from the sun is
insignificant. In such a
scenario, in an isotropic
neutrino flux, I guess it will be
impossible to extract energy
whatever the scheme of turbine or
sails deployed. I wait for the
comments of those who have a
greater command of the physics
As Dog Ed has pointed out, the
neutrinoes out there are
carrying a large amount of
energy along. So this project
fits into the 'interestingly
impossible' category. Unless
somebody comes up with a turbine
blade built to manifest a strong
field of weak force. If that is
not a contradiction, that is.
Neutrino capture experiment discussed. [bristolz, Mar 20 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]
||neelanden, it's very hard to make neutrinos work--they just won't pull their weight, and they hardly have any weight at all... But seriously, they can't be grabbed electromagnetically because they don't feel that force, which means they don't even interact with a tabletop the way my forehead does--they don't feel the solidity of matter, not even the matter of a neutron star. (Did you know that when you bang your head on the table it's the electrostatic repulsion between the atoms of your forehead and the table that make it hurt?) They hardly feel gravity, as you know, and being leptons they pay no attention to the 'strong' force that binds quarks, protons, and neutrons. The only thing that has any appreciable influence on a neutrino is the 'weak' force.
||So I guess what you'd need is some way to create a large-scale manifestation of the 'weak force' which only ever operates at very short ranges inside an atomic nucleus, and I dunno if that's possible. Even in theory.
||I just recently read that during a supernova explosion the collapsing/exploding star can briefly emit as much light as an entire galaxy, but the neutrino flux from the collapsing core of the star carries away ten thousand times more energy than that! Bismallah! One thinks of the neutrino as a silent, inoffensive little ghost yet it facilitates the most violent stellar events we know of.
||wow Dog Ed - good name for a cat then
||They use perchloroethylene, a dry-cleaning solvent. (link).
||I can not understand why one would harness something that can pass through feet of lead and into a cloud chamber, were nothing else can pass?
Would not it be more economically feasible to harness abundant sun light, wind, or wave energy and convert it to useful electrons than try to catch flies with vinegar?
||"Economically feasible"? A half-baker knows not of such
||Cmon now, we gave "hullaballoon" a croissant. Who ever said the ideas here are supposed to be practical? Not only is this idea amusing, it plays with physics in a fun way. +
||<<I suggest an ordinary turbine plated with stuff from a neutron star>> The collection device would melt. Plus, it would take way too much power and money to go to a neutron star anyway. This is just about as good as saying that if enough photons hit a wheel, the wheel will start to spin. All you have to do is wait long enough. A better way would to invent a neutrino-cell much like a solar cell, however if probably wouldn't work. An occaisional neutrino does however deflect off a neutron, but very rarely.
||Also, we haven't yet controlled the weak force. The neutrinos would have to work on quantum scales between areas of weak force in an atomic nucleus. However, you may have been able to do so about 13.6 billion years ago, assuming you could fit in a speck of universe the size of a few atoms. Cool idea though.