Jan. 30th, 2009

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Camera catches New Zealand inmates bungling bid for freedom

This CBC article contains a link to a YouTube video of two prisoners attempting to escape, but being foiled by not agreeing about which side of a pole to go around. As a result, the pair, who where handcuffed together, slammed into each other as they attempted to pass on either side of the pole.

If you want to bypass the CBC article, the video can be found here.

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globeandmail.com: There's gold in them thar sewers

A sewage treatment facility in Japan has recorded a gold yield of 1,890 grams/tonne of incinerated sludge, making it higher than the yeild of some of the world's most productive gold mines.
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Nuclear Fusion-Fission Hybrid Could Destroy Nuclear Waste and Contribute to Carbon-Free Energy Future | The University of Texas at Austin

University of Texas researchers have proposed a method for generating energy from the waste products of standard nuclear reactors which is based on the tokamak "magnetic bottle". The system consists of two stages, one to destroy the 75% of the waste using a process that is already employed in some countries (like France), and a second to destroy the remaining highly radioactive 25%. Nuclear fusion is used to provide neutrons to augment the neutrons produced by the fissionable material, resulting in a reduction in waste by as much as 99% (in theory). The magnetic bottle design keeps the hot material from melting the walls of the chamber. One hybrid system could process the waste generated by as many as 15 light-water reactors.

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O-Train may roll again Feb. 2, buses Feb. 9: City of Ottawa

With the strike coming to an end, transit service is expected to be up sooner than expected. The O-Train will ready by Monday and up to 60% of the transit buses will be on the road by the following Monday. Full operation is expected within 10 weeks (just short of three months, making it the start of April).

It was interesting to watch the city's reaction the strike. At least once a week I had been offered a drive as I walked to work (I use the 30-minute walk as part of my daily exercise routine). And I've been impressed with the response time by the city to plowing the sidewalks I use every day. It will be interesting to see the effect on the number of bus users, and how long it takes to build back their original ridership numbers.

January 2010

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