NASA Langley Chief Scientist Dennis M. Bushnell
NASA Langley Chief Scientist Dennis M. Bushnell has been with the agency for four decades, working on programs from Gemini to the Shuttle.

The Future of Energy: Part 1

NASA Langley Chief Scientist Dennis M. Bushnell on the future of energy

By EV World Audio

"Streams of water will flow through the desert; the burning sand will become a lake, and dry land will be filled with springs. Where jackals used to live, marsh grass and reeds will grow."

That passage from the Book of Isaiah (35:7) in the Torah, or what Christians refer to as the Old Testament, may be envisioning what NASA's chief scientist at its Langley research center thinks could be the future of what today are vast and growing stretches of desert in places like North Africa, India, the Australian Outback, the American Southwest. As late as the Byzantine Empire, vast stretches or North Africa were cultivated via still standing, Roman-built aqueduct systems. Today those regions stand largely abandoned, consumed by desert.

But unlike Isaiah's fresh water marsh grass and reeds, these plants will be halophytes: salt tolerant species that nature has evolved or modern man has engineered. At some point in the distant future, such vast stretches of salt water irrigated fields that were once desert will feed the world and fuel it, gradually sequestering excess CO2 in plant roots, while infinitely recycling the remaining carbon, eventually allowing humanity to stop burning fossil fuels.

That's only one of the possibilities Dennis M. Bushnell, NASA Langley's chief scientist, sees as ways to bring runaway climate change under control while entirely eliminating the need for oil and coal. In this two-part interview lasting more than 45-minutes, he discusses with EV World's Bill Moore a list of potential energy game changers, the most profound being Low Energy Nuclear Reaction or LENR, which we highlight in Nuclear Power We May Be Able to Live With.

This is one of the more fascinating, exciting… and chilling interviews we've done. Be sure to listen to Part 2 when it becomes available.

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Published: 23-Apr-2011


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