"Radioactive Boy Scout" line

Regarding the lines at the end of today’s column about transmuting base metals into gold (link to column), about David Hahn getting radiation poisoning … the photos of David Hahn that made the news back in 2007 when he was arrested for stealing smoke detectors didn’t really look like radiation poisoning. As this blog entry (and especially the comments) discusses, they look more like the kind of facial sores that stimulant abusers get. And Hahn has had legal problems resulting from drug addiction, and may be mentally ill.

It’s still probably not a good idea to try to build a breeder reactor in your shed, though.

(One other interesting note: David Hahn actually registered here a while back, as the user weakbrainhuman34, and the thread he started was deleted, perhaps because it was incoherent.)

Well, at least he practiced truth in naming. Part of his Boy Scout training sunk in, I guess.

Can you really “slam” a slow neutron into something? I’d think it would be more of a gentle nudge at best.

Even though the “Radio Active Boy Scout” is certainly an appropiate example for private fusioneers, there’s also Taylor Wilson who, it seems, not only succeeded at building his own fusion reactor but possibly might even be able to sell it!

Thanks for that link. What a really cool article!

“Slow” only in comparison to other accelerated subatomic speeds. A thermal neutron (the kind of slow neutron needed for nuclear capture reactions like Cecil was talking about) still hauls ass at 2.2 km/sec, or about 5,000 mph. So, nudge or not, “gentle” is not in the program. If you get hit with a beam of thermal neutrons… well, they’re pretty small, so you won’t feel it, but there’s a chance that you or the stuff you’re carrying (or wearing) will subjected to neutron activation, transmuting those materials into radioactive isotopes. And the particle beam itself isn’t that good for you.

That boy needs to be a Doper. :slight_smile: