jueves, 28 de enero de 2021

The Future of Fusion Energy, by Jason Parisi and Justin Ball

Since I am interested in a book that acquaints a layman like me on nuclear fusion, this is an excellent choice.

The book starts with an exposition of the present and future energy needs of humanity, contemplating the possible options: fossil fuels, renewables, and nuclear fission and fusion. 

Then it exposes the physical principles and each of the technologies -both of which are many- involved in obtaining fusion energy. It is certainly a very, very complex (and expensive) issue. It should be noted that nuclear fusion -the energy from the sun - has been achieved artificially for more than half a century, with the fusion bombs. "Simply" it is a question of being able to lock up this force and use it for peaceful purposes.

So I realize that it is a very difficult subject to explain for a curious reader without specialized knowledge like me, but I think the book more than succeeds in doing so, with very didactic and understandable explanations -considering the complexity of the matter- and with the help of ingenious metaphors and also also some really funny comments.

Finally, the book also deals with the issue of fusion reactors as the energy that in the future can greatly facilitate space travel throughout the solar system.

Without a doubt the fusion energy itself is an achievable goal, it is only a matter of investment in research, time and also of political will, for example if the great international project ITER can be achieved (planned for 2025). We will have to be patient then, because without a doubt this must be the energy that meets the needs of humanity in the future, if there is a future...

domingo, 3 de enero de 2021

The Atrocity Exhibition by J. G. Ballard.

I assume that I have not understood all that this book offers, maybe a 50% or less, so a rereading will be necessary. For this reason this review is merely a poor impression of the read.

On the other hand, I can say that even in the most nonsensical chapters, the prose of J.G. Ballard manages to captivate you, and that the author's comments at the end of each chapter in this edition are a little help to grasp more about the content -and the intent- of this... novel?

In the last part of the book, the reading becomes a bit -only a bit- diaphanous as we glimpse more clearly a criticism of the hypocrisy of the treatment of violence in the mass media -violence mediated by technology as in the Vietnam War or in the car accidents- and the deceitful seduction of the celebrities praised by these same media.

Despite all the above, for me it is an excellent reading that, as I have indicated, I should reread this book in the future.