Clean Nuclear Energy via Isotopic Transformation
The First Artificial Accelerated Decay Transformation
On April 28, 1932, at a meeting of the Royal Society, Lord Rutherford announced that two of the workers in Cavendish Laboratory, J. D. Cockcroft and E. T. S. Walton, had successfully demonstrated the release of excess radioactive energy from lithium elements and other light elements by protons entirely artificially generated by high electric potentials. The most surprising feature at the time was the relatively low voltage necessary. The generator installed had a peak voltage of about 750,000 volts, but artificial decay started at only one-sixth of this, 125,000 volts.
Indeed, later Rutherford, using deuterons (atoms of the hydrogen isotope of mass 2) instead of protons, pushed back the starting point to some 20,000 to 40,000 volts, which is well within the range of quite a small x-ray induction coil. The protons were generated in a long vertical hydrogen vacuum-tube, specially designed to withstand the high voltage, and with a window of the thinnest possible mica leaf at the end, through which they emerged to impinge on the target element being bombarded. The protons were estimated to have a velocity of one-thirtieth of that of light, and their range in air was only 1 cm. The bombarded substance was examined by the scintillations produced in zinc sulfide, through a screen thick enough to absorb the protons. At 125,000 volts, bright scintillations, in every respect identical with those produced by the fastest normal alpha-rays of radioactive thorium, began to appear, and, as the voltage was increased, their number rapidly increased, but not their range or the brightness of the scintillations. At 400,000 volts, several hundred a minute were counted… Rutherford vs. Lawrence Disintegration
Radioactive Lithium Decay is Clean!
The proton, however, has only one-sixtieth of the kinetic energy of the alpha-particles produced. This showed that they merely pulled the trigger and released energy could be produced from radioactive lithium. The scintillations were proved to be due to veritable alpha-particles of some 8.76 M.e.v., which is practically the same as those of the radioactive thorium range 8.6 cm. in air, and somewhat faster than those from radium of 7 cm. in air. Although the term “fission” has been mainly used to denote the type of disintegration in which radioactive uranium and radioactive thorium produce heat energy for nuclear reactors, the artificial disintegration of isotopic lithium is also possible.
It is said that lithium of mass number 7 reacts with a proton of mass number one, momentarily to produce the unstable beryllium isotope of mass number 8, which splits into equal parts, giving two alpha-particles or helium elements. In this “fusion” to “fission” reaction, from 7 grams of lithium and one of hydrogen to 8 grams of helium, approximately, there is a loss of 0.0181 gram, equivalent to 17.1 M.e.v., due to the Aston fraction of hydrogen and lithium being so much greater than that of helium. This is in good accord with each of the two elements that results from the fission reaction, each split particles receiving some 8.76 M.e.v.
It is also said, some of the unstable beryllium elements produced from lithium, emit, during the fusion cycle, a gamma-photon of no less than 17 M.e.v, which at the time was an unprecedented energy for these rays, the subsequent fission into two helium elements then occurring with relatively little energy. By using deuterons instead of protons, the lithium isotope of mass 6, acts much like that of mass 7 with protons, but the energy released is even greater, namely, 22 M.e.v.
The Energy Evolved from Isotopic Lithium
Isotopic lithium releases about 43 M.e.v. per fusion to fission reaction. Fission of a similar sized specimen of uranium-235 produces energy of about 200M.e.v. However, the released energy per mass of fuel is actually greater for the lithium reaction. Weight for weight, lithium releases ten times more energy than gained from the complete disintegration of radioactive uranium and thorium into lead and helium (in their natural radioactive process). Lithium isotopic reactions yield twice as much energy as uranium in a nuclear reactor; but less than 1 per cent. of the radioactive thorium mass undergoes accelerated decay (“fission”). The bottom line is that the “fission” of isotopic lithium with either protons or deuterons, affords, weight for weight, more energy than any other possible nuclear change. Additionally, the disintegration of radioactive uranium or thorium produces radioisotopic by-products that remain deadly for many generations, yet every day this toxic waste is stored for some future date when research reveals a secret that allows us to control this menace. Of course, you and I are expected to finance the handling and containment until this breakthrough. In contrast, the disintegration of isotopic lithium yields pure helium as its by-product, which readily lends itself to useful tasks.
The Age Old Lithium Disintegration Secret is now Unveiled!
The ore spodumene, LiAl(SiO3)2, is the most important commercial ore containing lithium, a very unstable metal which easily combines with gases, especially tritium. A freshly cut chunk of lithium is silvery, but tarnishes in a minute or so in air to give a gray surface. Lithium is the lightest of all solids having only 1 valence electron (1s22s1) and is actually lighter than cork and will float on water or oil. Whereas a cubic foot of aluminum weighs 169 pounds, a cubic foot of lithium weighs only 33 pounds. This attribute alone makes lithium easy to transport over long distances.
It is clear as the nose on my face that some of the information on this page is highly classified data that relates to hydrogen-bomb physics. However, it will not be until this information is “officially” made known that lithium will be used as a fuel in nuclear reactors. Isn’t it time that we use this science for peace?