Bensemus t1_jegvg62 wrote

Nickel isn't rare. Cobalt isn't rare either but almost all of it comes from the Congo and has pretty severe human rights issues. The good news is there are already cobalt free EVs like the base Tesla Model 3 and all EV makers have reduced the amount of cobalt in their batteries.

Cobalt is also used to refine oil so that's a fun fact that more people need to be aware of.


Bensemus t1_jeguo1j wrote

> I’m assuming 100% of EVs right now will come off the production line with brand new batteries

The batteries will always be new. The lithium used to make those batteries will either come from mines, the sea, or recycling.

It's the same with aluminum cans. Every coke can is new but the aluminum in that can might have been mined 50 years ago or a few months ago.

> How many will have to be manufactured with 100% mined lithium before we can close this loop? Wouldn’t everyone need to own at least one EV before this is possible?

The loop will never be closed. Again using aluminum as the example. Despite how easy it is to recycle, new aluminum is always needed. Recycling just greatly reduces how much mining is needed.

> Also, the cost and energy required to recycle these things. Who’s paying for it?

The people who need to buy lithium. They will either pay for the cost to mine it or they will pay the cost to recycle it.

> And once enough lithium is mined to have a closed loop, how will we offset the damage and pollution caused by raw mining and how long will that take?

Mining lithium really isn't that bad and you have to contrast it with oil extraction as that's what EVs are replacing. Oil extraction and subsequent burning of oil is so bad we might have completely fucked ourselves for centuries. People are completely numb to how insanely dirty fossil fuels are as it's all they've ever known.


Bensemus t1_je20hu9 wrote

In space unless you aimed REALLY well you aren't hitting anything. No matter how empty you think it is it's a billion times emptier.

They didn't do any crazy math to make sure they weren't going to hit anything. They did crazy math to make sure they got within very precise distances of each planet they visited to get a gravity assist. Each gravity assist sped up the probe until Voyager 1 was going about 17km/s and Voyager 2 was going about 15.5km/s. No rocket is capable of getting them to those crazy speeds.

After they each finished visiting planets they were on their way out of the solar system. There just isn't any risk of them crashing into anything.


Bensemus t1_jbqgglb wrote

Germany tried to avoid conflict with Russia by trading with it. The hope was that the economic repunctuations would make war too expensive. That didn't' work.

With China trade does seem to be preventing any conflict but people aren't confident that it will hold forever. China is illegally building islands in the South China Sea to claim resource rich waters as theirs and are ignoring the legitimate claims from the countries around the sea.

The spy balloon also damaged political relationships between China and the US.

I'm not saying the US's way is right. I would however argue their way is more right that what China and Russia seem to want.


Bensemus t1_jbfk1dx wrote

You can't watch a single galaxy evolve as they evolve over billions of years. Instead you look for galaxies at different stages in their evolution and piece them together.

They are able to measure the mass of the galaxy and compare that to the mass they can see to figure out how much is dark matter.


Bensemus t1_jbfjhei wrote

Yes. However we can't look all the way back to the Big Bang. The farthest back in time we can look with light is the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation or the CMB. After the Big Bang the universe was too hot for atoms to form. Electrons had too much energy. This plasma was opaque to light. Any light that was emitted was quickly reabsorbed and then reemitted. About 370,000 years after the Big Bang the universe kinda instantly everywhere cooled down to a temperature where atoms could form and suddenly light was able to travel arbitrarily far. This light is the CMB. This is a major piece of evidence supporting the Big Bang. No matter where you look you will see the CMB. It covers the entire universe.

To see past the CMB we will need to use something other than light. Scientists are hoping it will be possible to use gravitational waves or neutrinos to detect their equivalent of the CMB but both of those would have originated from the Big Bang or right after it as neither are blocked by plasma.