23 October 2010


I managed to attend the Conference for the final 2 days, Tuesday and Wednesday 19 and 20 October. What a thrill it was to tread those hallowed halls, where paragons of science, like Michael Faraday and Sir Humphrey Davy had once trod.

My personal thanks to Andreas Norlin for his interests in my blogging endeavours in the UK and, since I didn't get the opportunity to say it to him, I think he organised the whole proceedings in a top-class, professional manner; everything ran like clockwork.

I have only a limited understanding of nuclear physics, beyond the essential knowledge required for the applied use in mechanical engineering design and materials for nuclear engineering applications. LFTRs are relatively simple engineering products, but there were many presentations describing what I could only regard as adding much more complexity, such as accelerator driven systems. I could not readily appreciate their necessity, nor reach any emotional conclusion that they were 'good ideas' and readily marketable.

I had a couple of chats over coffee with Tim Norris, who gave a presentation on 'Patent Right Protection' and it quickly became clear that a kindred spirit of 'Keep It Simple Stupid' existed. We were both for LFTRs - as soon as possible - (meaning let the first subsidies go to LFTRs) and let all of the other, longer timescale and competing technologies find their own market level, in the fullness of time.

The one lingering thought that has remained with me, when competing technologies are battling it out for the hearts and minds of the public, is: will it all end up like the VHS - Betamax 'war' and will these complications have the potential to delay progress to the cleaner future we are all striving for?

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