Российская наука и мир (дайджест) - Март 2002 г.
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Март
2002 г.
Российская наука и мир
(по материалам зарубежной электронной прессы)
январь февраль март апрель май июнь июль август сентябрь октябрь ноябрь декабрь

    Под председательством Президента Владимира Путина Президиум государственного совета, Совета безопасности и недавно созданный Совет Науки и Высоких Технологий обсудит проект основных принципов политики России в области науки и техники на период до 2010 и на более далекие перспективы.

MOSCOW, Mar 19, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Russia lost during the past few years some 200,000 scientists, who left this country. The brain drain is still going on.
The state spends on the upkeep of the remaining scientists eight times less than the United States and three times less than Mexico. The average age of Russian scientists is 56 years, while the average figure for foreign scientists is about 45.
These statistics are given in the materials of the working group of the Presidium of the State Council, which drafted documents for the Wednesday meeting. On that day the Presidium of the State Council, the Security Council and the recently created Council for Science and High Technologies will discuss under the chairmanship of President Vladimir Putin the draft fundamentals of Russia's policy in the sphere of the development of science and technology for the period ending in 2010 and for a longer perspective.
Experts believe that the main trouble of Russian science is a shortage of financial resources. Under the legislation currently in effect, no less than 4 per cent of the spendings part of the budget is to be allocated for the needs of scientific development, but this is not being done. The authors of the program suggest a special schedule of the stage-by-stage bringing of the financing of scientific research to the level established by the law, in order to reach the set target by 2010. Similar schedules of the stage-by-stage growth of allocations for the national defence, law enforcement and national security have already been approved by the President.
Specialists suggest that the money from the federal budget should be concentrated in the priority spheres of scientific research, instead of distributing the financial resources evenly among all and everybody, so that no one will get enough. In their opinion, the priority spheres of scientific research include information and telecommunication technologies, electronics, space technologies, advanced types of armaments, military and specialized equipment, production technologies, live systems technologies, fuel and energy, transport, ecology and the rational use of natural resources.
Aside from it, the authors of the document suggest the introduction of a state order, which will be the main form of state support for the priority spheres of scientific research. In their opinion, the granting of tax privileges to research institutions on their property, the reduction of customs duties on the imported research equipment and some other measures are to help the scientists. The document suggests as well the increase of additional allowances to young scientists and to specialists with a scientific degree, as well as the improvement of pension support for top-rank scientists.
The experts suggest the financing of scientific research not only from the state budget, but also from the extrabudgetary sources. For instance, industrial enterprises may buy the results of scientific research, if a system of scientific control and accounting is created and if they have access to information about scientific finds. Besides, an intellectual property market should be formed, the rights of creators of intellectual property should be expanded and the system of the issue of patents and licenses should be improved.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved

* * *

    BBC Monitoring / 03/28/2002
    Putin holds talks with Russian scientists

    Президент В. Путин встретился с ведущими российскими учеными

Summary:

Text of report by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS Moscow, 28 March: In Baylkalsk, Irkutsk Region, Russian President Vladimir Putin is holding talks with scientists who represent various branches of Russian science.
Presidential spokesman Aleksey Gromov says that taking part in the meeting are: director of the Russian History Institute, Corresponding Member of the Academy of Sciences Andrey Sakharov, director-general of the Khrunichev State Space centre Professor Aleksandr Medvedev, Computer centre director, Corresponding Member of the Academy of Sciences Gennadiy Savin, head of laboratory at the Gene Studies institute Dr Sergey Kiselev, director of the Federal Nuclear centre at the Technical Physics insitute Dr. Georgiy Rykovanov and others.

* * *

    RosBusiness Consulting / Wednesday, March 27, 2002 6:12 AM EST
    Gov't commission to discuss new spelling rules of Russian language
    Правительственная комиссия обсуждает новые правила правописания русского языка

MOSCOW, Russia, Mar 27, 2002 (RosBusinessConsulting via COMTEX) -- Government council on Russian language will discuss new spelling rules at its meeting in May 2002, Education Minister Vladimir Fillipov said to journalists today. He pointed out that the Russian Academy of Sciences had elaborated its draft code of rules and even published a dictionary with new rules. "I have received a great number of negative letters towards this dictionary from Russian higher educational establishments", the minister said. He was quoted as saying that educational establishments did not know what rules to use while examining students. That is why the ministry has adopted a decision to follow old rules, the minister stressed. Talking about the new spelling rules he gave some examples.
According to the old rules in the word "party" the first letter must be capitalized if a communist party is meant. "However the political situation has changed and this rule should be revised", the minister pointed out.

© 2002, RosBusiness Consulting, all rights reserved.

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 28, 2002 3:48 AM EST
    Putin sets forth new taxation system for small business

    Президент Владимир Путин встретился с российскими учеными и специалистами в городе Байкальск, Иркутской области. На одной из таких встреч президент говорил о проекте уменьшения налога на предприятия малого бизнеса

MOSCOW, Mar 28, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- President Vladimir Putin is holding meetings with Russian scientists and specialists in the city of Baikalsk, Irkutsk Region. At one of such meetings the President spoke about the plan to reduce taxes on small-business enterprises, his press secretary Alexei Gromov said on Thursday.
"I have repeatedly given instructions to the government to work our an easier system of taxation for small and medium business. The system has not been worked out so far. I have worked hard on it of late, I have had several meetings with the minister of economic development. The government drew up corresponding proposals and may submit them to the State Duma before April 10", Putin said.
"The point at issue is the reduction of the aggregate tax burden, of the tax load on small-business enterprises, as well as the simplification of accounting."
"We suggest the introduction of two taxation systems - the simplified and the imputed one. The imputed system will remain as it is, only some modifications will be made."
Those enterprises and individual businessmen, whose annual income does not exceed ten million roubles, and whose staff does not exceed 20 workers, will be able to use the simplified taxation system. Small enterprises will be exempted from the profit tax, the tax on the incomes of natural persons, the value-added tax, the sales tax and the property tax.
"Aside from the four taxes mentioned above, the draft law provides for the exemption of the taxpayers, transferred to the simplified taxation system, from the single social tax.
"In order to guarantee the interests of people working in that sector of business, the small-business enterprises will have to pay mandatory pension contributions amounting to 14 per cent. Those 14 per cent will go to the cumulative system. Another 14 per cent will be contributed by the state. But those 14 per cent may be later subtracted from the single simplified tax. The ministry of economic development and trade will give corresponding explanations.
"The system suggests two ways of the payment of the simplified tax. The profit tax is the income tax minus the expenses made by the taxpayer, including 100 per cent of the expenses connected with investments. This tax is planned to amount to 20 per cent. The second way of the payment of that tax is the income tax, i.e. the turnover tax. It is planned to amount to 8 per cent.
"I should like to stress that the choice will be made by the small and medium enterprises themselves. But this is not all. Taxation in the form of a single tax on imputed income is envisaged for some types of business, including everyday services to natural persons, veterinary services, the repair, maintenance and washing of cars, including retail trade in fuel and lubricating materials, as well as public catering.
"The regions will be given the right to decide by themselves whether or not to introduce this taxation system on their territory.
"The regions will be given some regulation instruments, but not those which we see now and which evoke rightful indignation of people working in that sector of the national economy. The regions will not be allowed to unreasonably increase the taxes. The tax rate will be fixed on 15 per cent. "In my opinion, all this taken together may be regarded as the continuation of the transformations, which are revolutionary by their nature. Those measures are going to be no less revolutionary, than the introduction of a single 13 per cent income tax for natural persons", the President said.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved

* * *

    RosBusiness Consulting / 03/01/2002 09:39
    Gov't to look into consequences of Russia's ascension to WTO

    Правительство России планирует выделить 3 млн. рублей на изучение последствий вступления России в мировое торговое сообщество

MOSCOW, Russia, Mar 01, 2002 (RosBusinessConsulting via COMTEX) -- The Russian government intends to carry out a tender and hire an independent consultant to examine the consequences of Russia's joining the WTO for the Russian regions and industries.
The government plans to allocate around 3m rubles ($97,000) from its reserve fund for this purpose. The consultant will have to submit the results by the end of the year, a government official said.
Moreover, there is an agreement with the USAID about giving a special grant to the Central Scientific and Research Institute for Economic Development of the Russian Academy of Sciences to elaborate on a model of forecasting effects from Russia's joining the WTO for particular regions and industries. While elaborating on the model, the data of the State Statistics Committee and the combined monitoring of the households'budgets will be used.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis financed by the World Bank and the Moscow Bureau of the International Labour Organization will conduct the same research. The preliminary results of the research are expected in the third quarter of 2002.
However, the estimated consequences will be of preliminary character as the final analysis can be done only after signing an agreement with the WTO.
The official pointed out that the transitional period of Russia's ascension to the WTO would last at least 5 years.

* * *

    The Moscow Times / March 21, 2002, Thursday, Page 3
    President Laments Sad State of Science at Kremlin Talks
    • The Associated Press

    На встрече в Кремле президент В. Путин выразил сожаление по поводу нынешнего состояния российской науки. За последние пять лет из науки ушли более 800 тысяч молодых ученых, а средний возраст ученых в России 56 лет. Министр промышленности, науки и технологий Илья Клебанов заявил, что только 9% российских компаний применяют в своей работе новые технологии, в то время как в большинстве высокоразвитых в промышленном отношении стран - 90% фирм

The number of Russian scientists has shrunk by half since the demise of the Soviet Union, President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday at a meeting to discuss support for the country's underfunded research centers, once involved in the world's foremost scientific developments. "Choosing paths of development of national science means choosing a national perspective", Putin said in opening the Kremlin meeting. Putin said that the number of scientists has shrunk by half. About 800,000 young researchers have left the sector in the last five years, and the average scientist is now 56 years old. Most lab equipment dates back to Soviet times, he added.
Vladislav Sherstyuk, first deputy secretary of the presidential Security Council, said that 200,000 Russian scientists have fled abroad, Itar-Tass reported.
Russia still has 10 percent of the world's total number of scientists, but produces only 1 percent of the world's high-tech goods, Putin said. Industry, Science and Technologies Minister Ilya Klebanov said that only 9 percent of Russian companies are using new technologies, compared to over 90 percent in leading industrialized nations. Putin urged scientists to concentrate limited state funds on a few key fields of research and make a detailed scrutiny of their assets.
Yury Osipov, president of the Academy of Sciences, told reporters after the meeting that the inventory should determine which of the country's 4,000 scientific institutions are still involved in real research. Sherstyuk said that the government may close ineffective research centers but increase funding for those that remain by five times by 2010, Itar-Tass said. A law several years ago provided for science receiving 4 percent of annual government spending, but the target has never been met..

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 20, 2002 10:21 AM EST
    Putin criticizes state policy towards science in previous years
    Президент Путин критикует государственную политику в отношении науки в прошлые годы
    • By Veronika Voskoboinikova

MOSCOW, Mar 20, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Russia's President Vladimir Putin has criticized state policy towards science and research in previous years.
"We have mastered efficient use of our mineral resources so far. But the understanding that neglect of science is burdensome for the budget has been weak so far", Putin said Wednesday at a joint session of the State Council presidium, the Security Council and the Council for Science that discussed the problems of Russian research organizations.
He believes that Russia is capable of breaking from dependence on the exports timber, oil and gas. On this he remarked: "Everybody is speaking about innovative approaches nowadays, but little has been done in practical terms".
"Our research institutions are ill adapted to market economy. Russian business people and scientists do not seem to find common language", he said.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved.

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 15, 2002 4:59 AM EST
    Malaysian PM impressed by Russian science and technology
    • By Valery Agarkov

    Премьер - министр Малазии Махатир бин Мохамад посетил институт Биоорганической химии в Москве, где с большим интересом ознакомился с научным и технологическим оборудованием института и лаборатории нейрорецепторов и нейрорегуляторов. Министр дал высокую оценку достижениям российской науки и технологии

MOSCOW, Mar 15, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Malaysian Premier Mahathir bin Mohamad has highly assessed Russia's achievements in science and latest technology. He expressed his appreciation here on Friday while calling at the Academic Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, the leading research institution of this kind in Russia.
"Promotion of bilateral cooperation in these domains is most promising and will be useful both for Malaysia and Russia", the premier stressed. He attended the final session of the five-day Russo-Malaysian seminar on problems of bioorganics and also the signing of a joint agreement on cooperation between the national academies of the two countries.
The Malaysian premier and his party examined with great interest the scientific and technological equipment of the institute, especially of the laboratory of neuroreceptors and neuroregulators. The distinguished guest, whose profession is medicine, was also familiarised with some works of eminent Russian scientists.
In the opinion of the Malaysian participants of the seminar, the latter "was most successful and has laid the basis for the promotion of various contacts and joint research in the field of biotechnology and medicine".
Member of the official Malaysian delegation and former ambassador to Russia Datuk Yahya Baba told Itar-Tass that the next seminar would be held at Kuala Lumpur next year.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved.

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 20, 2002 2:17 PM EST
    Minister says Russian science doesn't lag behind West's
    • By Veronika Voskoboinikova

    Министр атомной энергетики Александр Румянцев возражает против драматизации ситуации в российской науке. Слухи о том, что наша наука отстает от западной сильно преувеличены. Наши ученые имеют большой потенциал

MOSCOW, Mar 20, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Atomic Energy Minister Alexander Rumyantsev warned against overdramatising the situation in Russian science.
"Rumours that our science is lagging far behind the West are an exaggeration. Our scientists have a great potential", he told journalists on Wednesday.
He believes that "budget allocations for science are not so small". One billion U.S dollars are directed to fundamental research.
Rumyantsev noted that the so-called brain drain does not have disastrous dimensions. "Integration of science in the world is inevitable. Americans are working in Europe and Europeans in America", he added.
The minister hopes that Wednesday's joint session of the presidium of the State Council, the Security Council and the Council of Science will facilitate reform in the field of science and technology and introduction of its results in the national economy.
Rumyantsev stressed that the session is not connected with Russia's possible response to the creation of missile defence in the United States.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 04, 2002
    India to develop cooperation with Russian Far East
    Индия развивает сотрудничество с русским Дальний Востоком
    • By Boris Saveliev

KHABAROVSK, Mar 04, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- India is developing cooperation with the Russian Far East not only in the sphere of the defence complex and the off-shore production of hydrocarbons near the Sakhalin Island. There are other promising spheres, trade, for example, specifically, the deliveries of Indian medicaments to Russia, Indian Ambassador to Russia Krishnan Raghunath said here on Monday after a meeting with Khabarovsk Governor Viktor Ishayev. They discussed the state and prospects of bilateral cooperation. Cooperation with arms-manufacturing enterprises of the Khabarovsk Territory continues to be one of the priority directions for India, the Indian Ambassador said.
The Khbarovsk Territory did not deliver planes to India during the past few years, while the value of the deliveries of compressors, pumps and other products from the Amur Region amounted only to 860,000 dollars in 2001.
The Indian Ambassador visited on Monday the office of the permanent representative of the Russian President in the Far Eastern Federal district. On Monday night he will make a report on problems of Russian-Indian relations at the Far Eastern State Academy of Economics and Law.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved.

* * *

    BBC Monitoring / 03/05/2002
    Former Soviet Union - Economic
    • Text of report by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS

    Новосибирские ученые создали уникальную вакцину против рака. Владимир Селедцов, доктор медицинских наук, ведущий исследователь Института Клинической Иммунологии, Сибирского отделения Академии Медицинских Наук, сказал, что она содержит клетки опухоли мышей, которые при введении в организм человека, вызывают мощную иммунную реакцию, нацеленную на борьбу с болезнью.

NOVOSIBIRSK, 5 March: Novosibirsk scientists have developed a unique vaccine against cancer. Vladimir Seledtsov, MD, a leading researcher of the Clinical Immunology Institute, the Siberian branch of the Academy for Medical Science, said that it contains mice tumour cells, which, when in a human body, cause a powerful immune reaction aimed at fighting the disease.

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / Thursday, March 28, 2002 4:05 AM EST
    Biospheric preserve under UNESCO auspices planned in Altai
    • By Valentin Pavlov

    В Новосибирском Академгородке был подписан проект плана сохранения биосферы высокогорного Алтая в рамках программы ЮНЕСКО. В проект включены территории России, Монголии, Китая и Казахстана

BARNAUL, Mar 28, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- Ecologists from Russia, Mongolia, China and Kazakhstan have endorsed the plan to create a unique biospheric preserve the Highland Country of the Altai under UNESCO auspices. The document to this effect was signed at an official meeting of representatives of the four countries in the academic township in Novosibirsk.
The four countries were joined by Germany that financed the preparatory stage of the project and has experience in setting up protected natural preserves. The preserve will comprise to the Altai territories in Russia, Mongolia, China and Kazakhstan, Tass was told at the Institute of Water and Ecological Problems of the Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Barnaul on Thursday.
The Altai biospheric preserve is to consist of several zones. The central one will be the forbid zone, the second a buffer zone in which some kinds of activities, for instance, the setting up of tourist complexes, will be permitted. The third zone, a territory of cooperation, must set an example in nature-friendly agriculture. The scientists suggested that uniform laws worked out by the international committee and national administrations of territories within the preserve should operate in the Highland Country of the Altai.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved.

* * *

    ITAR/TASS News Agency / March 06, 2002
    Energy minister visits oil wells in Bashkortostan
    • By Ravil Tukhvatullin

    Министр энергетики посетил нефтяные скважины в Башкортостане. Ученые Уфы совместно с коллегами из Москвы разработали новую технологию извлечения сырой нефти высокой вязкости

UFA, Mar 06, 2002 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) -- An inspection of oil wells and refineries was the main event of the Russian Energy Minister Igor Yusufov's brief working tour of Bashkortostan.
Later on Wednesday Yusufov met with Bashkir Prime Minister Rafael Baidavletov and managers of leading industries. The low utilization rate of Bashkortostan's oil refineries was the main issue discussed.
A senior official of the oil company Bashneft said Yusufov's visit followed media reports that Bashkortostan's subsoil contained more than 5 billion tonnes of high viscosity crude - an extremely valuable raw material. Scientists in Ufa in cooperation with their colleagues in Moscow devised a new technology of extracting high viscosity crude lately.
Yusufov left for Moscow Wednesday evening.

© 1996-2002 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved.
Copyright © 2002, ITAR/TASS News Agency, all rights reserved.

* * *

    EurekAlert! / 5-Mar-2002
    Preliminary evidence suggests possible nuclear emissions during experiments
    • Lee Riedinger, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

    Исследователи из Национальной лаборатории Oak Ridge, Политехнического Института Rensselaer и Российской Академии Наук сообщили о результатах исследований, в которых выявилась возможность ядерных реакций во время взрыва пузырьков в жидкости. Процесс известен как кавитация

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., March 4, 2002 -- Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the Russian Academy of Sciences have reported results that suggest the possibility of nuclear reactions during the explosive collapse of bubbles in liquid, a process known as cavitation.
The bubbles, which grow in the presence of sound waves, collapse to produce locally high pressures and temperatures. These pressures and temperatures can be sufficiently high to result in light emissions, called sonoluminescence, from the collapsing bubbles.
The collaboration was led by Rusi Taleyarkhan, a senior scientist in ORNL's Engineering Science and Technology Division, and Richard Lahey Jr., the Edward Hood professor of engineering at Rensselaer. The team used 14 million electron volt (MeV) neutrons shot into the liquid by a pulsed neutron generator to nucleate the bubbles.
These special conditions are believed to result in a significant increase in the final pressure of the collapsing bubbles. This suggests the possibility of producing densities and temperatures necessary for nuclear reactions. In particular, a long-sought goal of sonoluminescence research has been the possibility of achieving nuclear reaction conditions.
Experiments suggest the presence of small but statistically significant amounts of tritium above background resulting from cavitation experiments using chilled deuterated acetone. This tritium could result from the nuclear fusion of two deuterium nuclei. Tritium was not observed during cavitation of normal acetone, which does not contain deuterium.
Attempts to confirm these results by looking for the telltale neutron signature of the deuterium fusion reaction have yielded mixed results. While there are indications of neutron emission in the newly published results, subsequent experiments with a different detector system show no neutron production.
Theoretical estimates of the conditions in the collapsing bubbles are consistent with the possibility of nuclear fusion, under certain assumptions concerning the relevant hydrodynamics.
These results suggest the need for additional experiments, said ORNL's Lee Riedinger, deputy director for Science and Technology. In particular, the difference in the two sets of neutron measurements must be clarified. Additional tritium experiments would also allow a better understanding of the tritium observations.
Until confirmatory experiments are completed, a cautionary view is appropriate, according to Riedinger, who said, "The manuscript has been through external peer review, but the scientific record shows that tritium and neutron measurements at these levels are difficult, and one must do further tests before firm conclusions can be drawn."
### The work is being reported in the March 8 issue of the journal Science. Questions related to "Evidence for Nuclear Emissions during Acoustic Cavitation"
Q. What exactly was measured in this experiment?
A. Evidence for tritium production and neutron emission was observed during the collapse of bubbles in cavitation experiments using deuterated acetone. If correct, and this is a very important "if", the results suggest that nuclear reactions may have occurred. This would be a significant discovery in physics.
Q. Why do you say "if"?
A. These are very challenging measurements. The tritium and neutron levels are small, and experience has shown that measurements at these levels are difficult to interpret. In addition, an attempt to confirm the neutron data using a different detector and counting system yielded results that are not in agreement with the published data. The preliminary measurements are potentially very interesting, but it is premature to conclude that nuclear reactions have been achieved.
Q. ORNL seems very cautious about this publication. Do you believe the results?
A. We do not know. This level of uncertainty is not unusual when new phenomena are observed. What we do believe is that a legitimate scientific debate should proceed.
Q. What about potential applications that may come from this experiment?
A. We are far too early in the process to speculate on potential applications. If the effect is confirmed, there are obvious research opportunities. We have no way of knowing whether any practical applications, such as fusion energy, might be possible. The relevant cross sections for this particular process indicate that scale-up is unlikely. If the claim of nuclear fusion is indeed correct, these experiments would still have produced only one tenth of a millionth of a watt of power - far too small to measure.
Q How does cavitation work?
A. When a sound wave propagates through a liquid, the molecules in the liquid are subjected to positive and negative pressures. During the negative pressure phase of the wave, tiny bubbles in the liquid can grow dramatically (up to a factor of 1,000 in volume), since the pressure is below the vapor pressure. When the positive pressure phase of the sound wave passes, the bubble collapses, and the energy accumulated in the bubble during growth is released. This process is called "acoustic cavitation". Temperatures in the collapsing bubbles can reach 10,000 kelvin, sufficient to influence chemical reactions.
Q. What is sonoluminescence?
A. If the energy density in the collapsing bubble is sufficiently high, the residual gases are heated to incandescence and emit light. This is sound-induced light, or sonoluminscence.
Q. How do you get nuclear reactions from sonoluminescence?
A. The energy in the collapsing bubbles must be increased by a factor of one million above traditional sonoluminescence energies. One way to increase the energy in the bubbles is to increase volume change during the bubble growth phase. This process occurred in the present experiments. Numerical calculations suggest that temperatures in imploding bubbles could approach those required for nuclear reactions under certain conditions.
Q. What is the nuclear reaction mechanism?
A. The proposed mechanism is the fusion of two deuterium nuclei. This reaction has two pathways with approximately equal probabilities. The first pathway produces helium and a 2.5-MeV neutron. The second pathway produces tritium and protons. In this experiment, the 2.5-MeV neutron and tritium production were investigated as signatures for the reaction.
Q. Is this related to cold fusion?
A. No. In cold fusion, an entirely new fusion mechanism was required. The interpretation of the present experiments is based on the premise that pressures and temperatures required for known fusion reactions can be achieved under special conditions in cavitation experiments.
Q. Has there been controversy concerning these results?
A. Controversy is often present in science. The tension from such controversy can be the source of scientific progress. The potential for controversy increases when the experiments are difficult, the measured effects small, and the impact potentially large. The controversy in this work relates primarily to the neutron data. We have conflicting results from two groups. In the end, we decided that the best path forward was to publish the results with appropriate
caveats. Intellectual give and take is the way science works.
Q. What is the next step?
A. We believe it is very important that these measurements be repeated, and that differences in the data be resolved. We are planning follow-on experiments. We should know more in a few months.
Q. Is there agreement among the authors and the institutions on the results?
A. This question is an important one. One would expect that the authors would be very positive. The institutions have been more cautious in their conclusions. We have tried to strike an appropriate balance. There are no real differences between RPI and ORNL.
Q. Is this a breakthrough?
A. Again, we simply cannot know based on the existing data. The debate is an exciting one, but more work is needed to verify the results.
Q. Why is the second set of neutron measurements not described in this paper?
A. The differences in the two sets of neutron measurements have not been resolved. The authors disagree with the second set of measurements and chose not to include these measurements in their submission to Science. During subsequent reviews, it was decided to include a reference to the second measurement in the paper. This reference will aid the scientific community in drawing its own conclusions. Science is aware of the second measurements.
Q. Can you describe the second set of neutron measurements?
A. The second set of measurements was performed with the cooperation of the authors in their laboratory. The data were collected and analyzed by experienced nuclear physics experimentalists using a different detector system and counting electronics. The results do not agree with the original measurements. We do not understand the differences, and more measurements are needed to resolve this.
Q. What is your reaction to Bob Park's article in What's New?
A. We always enjoy Bob's newsletter. He has correctly pointed out differences in the neutron data. These differences are cited in the paper and have not been resolved. This situation emphasizes the need for additional measurements and for caution in interpreting the published results.

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Посещение N 6479 с 04.02.2003