But Professor Gregg Butler of the University of Manchester argues that the methods currently in place fail to measure value for money in any meaningful sense. Professor Butler is giving the keynote talk today (Wednesday 1st November 2006) to the Society for Radiological Protection’s meeting on “Integrated Waste Strategy. He will cite many examples where government guidelines, for example for the valuation of health detriment, are exceeded by very large factors.
The main reason for this, he says, is that the key methodology used to assess cleanup schemes, the determination of Best Practical Means, does not measure whether the cost of any scheme is proportionate to its benefits. Regulatory guidance indeed states that a quantitative definition of ‘grossly disproportionate’ would be ‘difficult, if not impossible’.
Butler, and his co-worker Grace McGlynn of Integrated Decision Management Ltd, contend that the ‘impossible’ should be attempted and is likely to be found to be eminently possible. The alternative is to carry on with no real measure of the effectiveness of cleanup, no way of balancing factors like worker and public dose, solid and liquid waste creation and hazard potential reduction rate against increased discharges.
‘If it was my £70B I’d be trying very hard to derive a decent methodology’, says Gregg Butler, ‘and as a taxpayer some of the £70B is indeed my money, so I’m at least making my views known!’
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A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
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In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
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The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
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Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
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The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...
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