Biography

RWP was born in Manchester, in the north of England, in the late 1950s, so he is very old. He really liked the north of England, which by 1965 was hip and had three TV channels, and where he went to a coed school. His parents, for reasons best known to themselves, then yanked him away, to Belfast and then Dublin, which had one TV channel that started up at 6 pm with the Angelus (Catholic call to prayer). He also had to go to an all boys school, where he realized he really missed girls. This probably let him focus on schoolwork, though, and at age 19, after he had finished college, he set off for America, where he still resides. He has a bachelors degree in biochemistry and a Ph.D. from Harvard in biophysics, and has lived also in Mainz, Germany, Setauket NY, and Richland WA. He currently divides his time between Nebraska, Rosslyn VA, and Florida.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

AP's bogus nuclear diagram

AP just came out with a story claiming the diagram below was produced by Iranian computer scientists simulating a nuclear device.
The graph ostensibly plots energy and power vs time, in microseconds. However, power is just the time derivative of energy. So the power graph should just be the slope of the energy graph. Superficially, it looks like it is. But the maximum value of the slope is 4.3 X 108 kT/s, whereas the power graph shows the maximum power to be around 1.7 X 1013 kT/s, 40,000 times larger.

Whoever produced the graph couldn't pass freshman physics. Somehow I doubt that was an Iranian nuclear engineer.

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