Skip to main content

View Diary: DK GreenRoots: Blood Stains on Green Technology. (33 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Which materials of the green economy? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dsteffen, rb137, Otteray Scribe

    My loving marriage of 17 years is now a symbol of inequality and discrimination.

    by coigue on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 07:57:17 PM PDT

    •  Research and engineering (7+ / 0-)

      depends on a lot of these metals.

      Tungsten is a big one, because it's so well understood (studied), and it can bne heated to high temperatures (about half as hot as the surface of the sun.) Once it's been heated, it becomes really brittle, though, and it can't be machined.

      Tantalum is a sweetheart of engineering. It can be heated about as high as tunsgten, but it doesn't become brittle -- so it can be machined again and again. It is fantastically useful for electronic components.

      Tin is another important metal you'll find in electronic devices.

      Gold. Well, you know gold.

      Then there are catalyst metals. I don't think there is a whole lot of Pt in those mines, but I've read more than one serious report that suggests Pd could become a blood mineral. Pd gets used for many things, including fuel cells, blood sugar monitors, "greening" reactions (cleaning up toxic junk after industrial processes.)

      These were the ones I had in mind when I wrote the diary, but it isn't an exhaustive list. And we can get these metals elsewhere...

      ...There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. --Rumi

      by rb137 on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:04:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  One of my undergraduate profs (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wader, coigue, dsteffen, FishOutofWater

        was N. F. Bolling who was an early researcher into superconducting properties of grey tin along about 1955 and 1956.  At one time there was talk of him being a candidate for a Nobel, but he was leapfrogged in research by some bigger names with better labs.  I believe that work got a Nobel in 1972.  An interesting metal.

        It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment. - Ansel Adams

        by Otteray Scribe on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:29:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Pt group is found more in South Africa (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        coigue, dsteffen, rb137, Otteray Scribe

        Pt & Pd are found in the DR Congo but not so much in the conflict area. A major extension of the Congo's copper belt was discovered. Copper is a major export of the Congo.

        "It's the planet, stupid."

        by FishOutofWater on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:34:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I was just about to (3+ / 0-)

          respond to your other comment (and thanks for that UN report link).

          What I'm researching right now is the likelihood that Pd, Cu, or Ni will become conflict minerals. There are some reports that say unequivolcally yes. But you've noticed the reason why it's unclear. The Pt-group mines are listed in southwestern DRC.

          We can get Pt, Pd, Cu, and Ni from mines all over the world, though. We'll see. And thanks again!

          ...There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. --Rumi

          by rb137 on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:38:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm a geochemist so I remember a lot of stuff (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            coigue, dsteffen, rb137, Otteray Scribe

            but I can't keep track of it all so I use google carefully to verify my recollections. I learn a lot that way.

            The key to peace will be certification of sources in the Congo, not stopping mining. The people of the Congo have been robbed blind by the rest of the world. Unfortunately, now they are robbing from each other too.

            "It's the planet, stupid."

            by FishOutofWater on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:43:28 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's right. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Otteray Scribe

              I didn't state that clearly enough -- it's embedded in the links, though. I'll probably go back and clarify in the text tomorrow.

              The Senate has made some policy progress about this, actually. I'll be interested in seeing how it all pans out.

              ...There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. --Rumi

              by rb137 on Thu Jul 02, 2009 at 08:52:03 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site