Originally designed by TV developer Philo T. Farnsworth as a device to create nuclear fusion, the fusor is unique in its simplicity. Instead of slowly heating plasma, the fusor simply injects "high temperature" ions directly into a reaction chamber. Still, engineers have been unable to develop a practical power source using the technology. Though hobbyists and even high school students have built small fusors, care must be taken to avoid its major radiological hazard. What is this hazard?
Back in the day
Heyerdahl was a great adventurer with a background in zoology and geography. His real passion, however, lay in cultural anthropology, and he theorized that the first settlers of Polynesia were of South American origin. To support this theory, he and 5 companions made the crossing from Peru to the Tuamotu Archipelago on a primitive log raft. Heyerdahl describes the voyage in the international bestseller Kon-Tiki. Why did he deliberately burn his sailing vessel during an expedition in 1978?
Born on a day like today
Born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle, this Dutch courtesan, dancer, and probable spy went by the stage name Mata Hari. During WWI, she had intimate relationships with many high-ranking Allied military officers and government officials. In January 1917, French intelligence intercepted German messages about a spy that the former identified as Mata Hari. Less than a year later, she was executed by the French on espionage charges. What is she rumored to have done while standing before the firing squad?