Sunday, May 29, 2005

Building the world's most powerful laser

CNN.com ran an article about the National Ignition Facility (NIF) which has been of interest to me since maybe junior year in high school. The NIF is a project to build the world's most powerful laser that will heat and compress a composite fuel pellet to produce fusion, which powers stars and makes the bang in hydrogen bombs.

I did a research paper on the NIF in college freshman year and was so excited to think it might be done soon. I think it was originally scheduled to test by 2004. Well, that's been pushed back to 2010. The budget has increased about 8-fold, and many politicians seem upset over this. I however, would like to see it come to fruition at any cost. The scientific benefits of having this working are unknown in full. It's too valuable, so you politicians out there... mind your own business.

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