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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Star Wars becomes Bug Zapper.

Remember Lowell Wood? Looks like he's still coming up with "unique" ideas. Now he's decided to fight malaria by aiming lasers at mosquitoes.

Here is story in the Wall Street Journal...

Rocket Scientists Shoot Down Mosquitoes With Lasers

March 17, 2009 5:31 AM


Anonymous said...

Now, if we just find some way to resurrect Brilliant Pebbles! I'll bet it could also be used to kill off mosquitoes.

Anonymous said...

Wait until someone sues when a laser beam hits their eye!

Anonymous said...

Now how in the world are you going to run this device in those third-world areas that need mosquito control? Most don't have the electricity to spare, if any at all.

Also, any beam strong enough to flame a bug is a safety hazard. Having dozens of these devices around a wetland would pose a serious hazard to all forms of life in the neighborhood.

While Lowell may get his giggles from this upgrade to frying ants with a magnifying glass, in retrospect the idea is just another example of stupid science gone amoke. You combat malaria with waterlands management, appropriate use of anti-mosquito techniques ( fish, birds, BT, pesticides ), and moving people away from the source.

It's about time people stopped funding stupid ideas just because a PhD writes a proposal using big words that even college educated people have difficulty understanding. We don't need to study ants in zero-g for 20 times, blindly approve drugs that medical companies paid off researchers to fake succesful results for, money "gurus" creating new worthless financial instruments, and certainly don't need a laser-based bug-zapper. Stop all this nonsense and we'd be on the way to saving some serious money.

Anonymous said...

There is the small issue of placing this in third world countries where electrical power might not be available. I suppose that one could have a solar array drive a battery farm, call Al Gore for details.

I also noted that the laser may not vaporize the little pests, it just might confuse them. If you can't dazzle them with brilliance....

I assume the guidance control will be done with a S-1 computer.

Anonymous said...

I've noticed this approach many times at the national labs....we build a gizmo and someone else will figure out a use for it.

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