Best of 2011: CERN's Neutrinos Faster than Light
As we head into the new year, Energy Digital will be posting some of best stories from 2011 all week. Happy Holidays to all of our readers!
The scientific community is about to be turned on its head as researchers at the CERN largehadron collider in Europe scramble to check their work in an experiment that has apparently broken the laws of modern physics. Scientists working at the facility have discovered that subatomic neutrino particles may have traveled through the 17-mile (27 kilometers) long particle collider at faster than the speed of light. The only thing is… nothing can travel faster than the speed of light.
The father of modern physics, Albert Einstein, formulated his “Special Theory of Relativity” based on the fundamental law that nothing can move faster than the speed of light, 299,792,458 meters per second. If the CERN experiment proves to be accurate, than Einstein’s theories, which have paved the way for countless technological advances in the last century, may only be scratching the surface of a much more complex physical nature of our reality.
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In recent decades, quantum physics, or the physics of the subatomic level of reality, has propagated new and exciting theories, including the existence of worm holes, multiple dimensions and the realities of time travel. In fact, the whole purpose of CERN’s research is to try to collide particles at high speeds to eventually isolate and prove the existence of the Higgs boson particle, also called the “God particle.” This is theorized to be the smallest particle in existence. It is deduced that this particle may hold clues to what exactly is the strong force, the extremely powerful attractive force that operates at the subatomic level holding together particles of the same polarity that should otherwise repel one another (think magnets repelling one another).
In their pursuit of the Higgs boson particle, however, these researchers have been achieving all sorts of other amazing results. For example, just a few months ago CERN successfully isolated antimatter for 1,000 seconds. This latest discovery, however, is even more world shattering and could open up the doors to new, never dreamed of technologies; because, anything that travels faster than light can hypothetically break the time barrier.
The researchers responsible for the find are now seeking peer review of their data before officially claiming that the discovery is true. “The feeling that most people have is this can’t be right, this can’t be real,” said CERN spokesman James Gillies.
The neutrino beam in question was clocked traveling 60 nanoseconds faster than the speed of light, and scientists only put the margin of error at 10 nanoseconds.
There are fringe theoretical physicists that have stirred up controversy in the scientific community with out-of-the-box theories that would lend to the CERN revelation. NassimHaramein shook up the physics world a few years ago when he published a paper with a radically different theory of quantum physics. He argues that at the subatomic level, protons actually behave as black holes, rather than particles. He calls this the Schwarzchild Proton theory. His model reveals that the strength of the strong force is due to the fact that protons are microscopic black holes with intense gravitational pull. Similar to how the planets and stars in our galaxy revolve around a massive central black hole, so too do the electrons and other quantum particles seen at the subatomic level. Haramein essentially argues that the Higgs boson particle doesn’t exist. Oddly, CERN researchers have even gone on record stating that the Higgs boson may indeed not exist as their tests seem to be no closer to finding the mysterious particle. While Haramein’s theories have been shunned by the mainstream physics community, the new findings coming out of CERN are revealing that what we know about the physical nature of reality may need to be edited, and fringe researchers like Haramein may turn out to be right after all.
Itronics successfully tests manganese recovery process
Itronics - a Nevada-based emerging cleantech materials growth company that manufacturers fertilisers and produces silver - has successfully tested two proprietary processes that recover manganese, with one process recovering manganese, potassium and zinc from paste produced by processing non-rechargeable alkaline batteries. The second recovers manganese via the company’s Rock Kleen Technology.
Manganese, one of the four most important industrial metals and widely used by the steel industry, has been designated by the US Federal Government as a "critical mineral." It is a major component of non-rechargeable alkaline batteries, one of the largest battery categories sold globally.
The use of manganese in EV batteries is increasing as EV battery technology is shifting to use of more nickel and manganese in battery formulations. But according to the US Department of Interior, there is no mine production of manganese in the United States. As such, Itronics is using its Rock Kleen Technology to test metal recoverability from mine tailings obtained from a former silver mine in western Nevada that has a high manganese content.
In a statement, Itronics says that its Rock Kleen process recovers silver, manganese, zinc, copper, lead and nickel. The company says that it has calculated – based on laboratory test results – that if a Rock Kleen tailings process is put into commercial production, the former mine site would become the only primary manganese producer in the United States.
Itronics adds that it has also tested non-rechargeable alkaline battery paste recovered by a large domestic battery recycling company to determine if it could use one of its hydrometallurgical processes to solubilize the manganese, potassium, and zinc contained in the paste. This testing was successful, and Itronics was able to produce material useable in two of its fertilisers, it says.
"We believe that the chemistry of the two recovery processes would lend itself to electrochemical recovery of the manganese, zinc, and other metals. At this time electrochemical recovery has been tested for zinc and copper,” says Dr John Whitney, Itronics president.
“Itronics has been reviewing procedures for electrochemical recovery of manganese and plans to move this technology forward when it is appropriate to do so and has acquired electro-winning equipment needed to do that.
"Because of the two described proprietary technologies, Itronics is positioned to become a domestic manganese producer on a large scale to satisfy domestic demand. The actual manganese products have not yet been defined, except for use in the Company's GOLD'n GRO Multi-Nutrient Fertilisers. However, the Company believes that it will be able to produce chemical manganese products as well as electrochemical products," he adds.
Itronics’ research and development plant is located in Reno, about 40 miles west of the Tesla giga-factory. Its planned cleantech materials campus, which will be located approximately 40 miles south of the Tesla factory, would be the location where the manganese products would be produced.
Panasonic is operating one of the world's largest EV battery factories at the Tesla location. However, Tesla and other companies have announced that EV battery technology is shifting to use of nickel-manganese batteries. Itronics is positioned and located to become a Nevada-0based supplier of manganese products for battery manufacturing as its manganese recovery technologies are advanced, the company states.
A long-term objective for Itronics is to become a leading producer of high purity metals, including the U.S. critical metals manganese and tin, using the Company's breakthrough hydrometallurgy, pyrometallurgy, and electrochemical technologies. ‘Additionally, Itronics is strategically positioned with its portfolio of "Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies" to help solve the recently declared emergency need for domestic production of Critical Minerals from materials located at mine sites,’ the statement continues.
The Company's growth forecast centers upon its 10-year business plan designed to integrate its Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies and to grow annual sales from $2 million in 2019, to $113 million in 2025.