Science Fiction Dictionary
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

 

NDB Nuclear Waste Battery Lasts A Lifetime

Sometimes companies come up with crazy, science-fictional claims for their products. By "science-fictional" I mean the idea sounds like some sort of obvious wish-fulfillment from the mind of an sf writer.

For example, Robert Heinlein had the idea of a Shipstone in his 1982 novel Friday, which was a battery that lasted for years or decades.

The Shipstone complex is mammoth, all right, because they supply cheap power to billions of people who want cheap power and want more of it every year. But it is not a monopoly because they don't own any power; they just package it and ship it around to wherever people want it...
(Read more about Shipstones)

How could such a thing be possible?

Enter a California-based battery company that says successful early test results recently competed on a nano-diamond battery brings them closer to making such a thing possible.

The key to their revolutionary batteries is radioactive nuclear waste. There are massive quantities of leftover nuclear waste from nuclear plant facilities. Such waste is extremely toxic, lasts thousands of years and poses a challenge when it comes to disposing of it (burying and encasing it) safely.

The company, NDB, says it can safely utilize this waste to generate power in its nano diamond batteries. It can achieve this by processing graphite nuclear waste into a pure form and then converting it into diamonds. As the waste product enveloped by the diamond decays, it interacts with the carbon to generate a small electric current.

Depending on the power drain, the battery, which never needs recharging, would last for a user's lifetime, and beyond.

It could be used for common mobile devices, medical products, satellites and could provide energy in hard-to-reach locations or remote areas where routine maintenance would be difficult.

(Via Techxplore.)

Golden Age writer Edmond Hamilton had a similar idea in his 1940 novel Revolt on the Tenth World:

"Solid power" was, he knew, the most super-valuable substance in the solar system. For it wasn't really a substance at all, but compressed energy "frozen" by temporary transformation into artificial atoms.

Trillions of units of power could be compressed thus into an inch-square cube of what looked like blue-white ice. And a suitable transformer would, when desired, turn it back into almost limitless power.
(Read more about solid power)

Apparently, NDB has proof-of-concept and expects to produce a prototype in two years. Critics wonder if the power density will be sufficient and of course there are safety concerns.

But if you can't dream, what's the point?

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 8/15/2020)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 0 )

Related News Stories - (" Engineering ")

The FLUTE Project - A Huge Liquid Mirror In Space
'It's area, and its consequent light-gathering capacity, was many times greater than any rigid mirror...' - Raymond Z. Gallun, 1934.

'Whisper Mode' ala Blue Thunder Researched At Bristol
'Forest Lawn.' from 'Blue Thunder' 1983.

Moonwalkers AI-Controlled Electric Shoes
Now that's power walking that Hugo Gernsback would have approved.

Electric Catamaran 'Explorer Eco 40m' Has 'Solar Skin'
'On went the electric-yacht faster and still faster.' - John Baker Hopkins, 1885.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

Science Fiction Timeline
1600-1899
1900-1939
1940's   1950's
1960's   1970's
1980's   1990's
2000's   2010's

Current News

SliceIt! Why Not Teach Robots To Use Knives?
'One building now gushed forth smoke and another stench that was unmistakable.'

NYC/Dublin Portal Fails To Meet 'Guardian Of Forever' Standards
I am the Guardian of Forever.

FLOAT Levitating Train On The Moon ala Clarke
'The low-slung monorail car, straddling its single track, bored through the shadows on a slowly rising course.'

Singapore Writers Push Back On LLM Training
'...we've promised him a generous pension from the royalties.'

SpaceX Intros Extravehicular Activity Suit
'Provision had been made to meet the terrific cold which we knew would be encountered the moment we had passed beyond the atmosphere.'

Athena Smart Security Guard Robot With Face Recognition
'You are who we say you are, Dr. Dakin,' Turner said.'

The FLUTE Project - A Huge Liquid Mirror In Space
'It's area, and its consequent light-gathering capacity, was many times greater than any rigid mirror...'

Robot Preachers Found To Undermine Religious Commitment
'Tell me your torments,' the Padre said, in an elderly voice marked with compassion.

CyberCab - Tesla Renames The Robotaxi
'A cybercab dogged their heels...'

SpaceHopper Microgravity Robot Lands On Its Feet
'...a slender-legged tripod surmounted by a spherical body no larger than a football.'

Brin's 1990 Novel Earth Still Full Of Predictions
'... making the point that their likenesses, every move they made, were being transmitted.'

'Whisper Mode' ala Blue Thunder Researched At Bristol
'Forest Lawn.'

Gaia - Why Stop With Just The Earth?
'But the stars are only atoms in larger space, and in that larger space the star-atoms could combine to form living matter, thinking matter, couldn't they?'

Microsoft VASA-1 Creates Personal Video From A Photo
'...to build up a video picture would require, say, ten million decisions every second. Mike, you're so fast I can't even think about it. But you aren't that fast.'

Splendid View Of Eclipse From Orbit Visualized And Repurposed By Arthur C. Clarke
'The area affected was five hundred kilometres across, and perfectly circular.'

Bespoke Environment Music From AIs
'Call 'em Winter Mute," said the other, making it two words.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.