Could a Helium-Resistant Material Usher In an Age of Nuclear Fusion?

Researchers working with a team at the Los Alamos National Lab tested a new way to build material for nuclear fusion reactors, “and found that it could eliminate one of the obstacles preventing humanity from harnessing the power of fusion energy.” schwit1 quotes Science Alert:
A collaboration of engineers and researchers has found a way to prevent helium, a byproduct of the fusion reaction, from weakening nuclear fusion reactors. The secret is in building the reactors using nanocomposite solids that create channels through which the helium can escape… Not only does the fusion process expose reactors to extreme pressure and temperatures, helium — the byproduct of fusion between hydrogen atoms — adds to the strain placed on reactors by bubbling out into the materials and eventually weakening them…
In a study published in the journal Science Advances, the researchers overview how they tested the behavior of helium in nanocomposite solids, materials made from thick metal layer stacks. They found that the helium didn’t form bubbles in these nanocomposite solids like it did in traditionally used materials. Instead, it formed long, vein-like tunnels. “We were blown away by what we saw,” said Demkowicz. “As you put more and more helium inside these nanocomposites, rather than destroying the material, the veins actually start to interconnect, resulting in kind of a vascular system.”
The article points out that nuclear fusion generates four times the energy of nuclear fission.


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Australia just landed its first high performance centre for esports

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Oceania’s esports industry just took a huge step forward.

Australia has opened its very first Esports High Performance Centre in Sydney, a new home base for Oceania’s leading League of Legends team, the LG Dire Wolves.

Established in Sydney’s city sporting precinct, sitting in the side of Allianz Stadium looking towards the Sydney Cricket Ground, the facility aims to drive growth and development in Australia’s esports industry.

The facility will be stocked with new technology in eye-tracking and performance analysis, as part of a partnership with the University of Technology Sydney. Read more…

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Jessica Chastain absolutely skewers Hollywood's sexist audition culture

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Hollywood audition culture is notoriously sexist — celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Emmy Rossum have spoken out about it before. And in a new sketch from Friday’s Tonight Show, Jessica Chastain took another dig at the famously toxic process.

In the sketch, Chastain shows up at an audition to read for “Angela.” The part seems straightforward enough, until the casting director (played by Jimmy Fallon) starts asking her to “do it again, but hot” and, in a truly cringeworthy moment, to read her lines like a “spicy little peppermint with a secret.” (Of course, when a male actor comes in to audition, he receives no notes.) Read more…

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Silicon Valley could be the next hotspot for SEC whistleblowers

 In recent years, the SEC has had greater success policing wrongdoing due in large part to the implementation of its whistleblower program. But the whistleblowers’ crosshairs are not limited to Wall Street. Individuals are beginning to come forward in a new sphere of the business world, one with its own reputation of a problematic, win-at-all-cost culture: Silicon Valley. Read More

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HBCU.vc trains students become venture capitalists

 There are very few black and Latinx investors, with only 2 percent of investment team members at VC firms identifying as black and just 1 percent identifying as Latinx, according to the National Venture Capital Association. This is where HBCU.vc comes in. HBCU.vc, a pivot from HBCU to Startup, aims to diversify the white, male-dominated world of venture capital. HBCU.vc’s program works… Read More

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