Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California on July 17, 1974 · Page 24
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Ukiah Daily Journal from Ukiah, California · Page 24

Ukiah, California
Issue Date:
Wednesday, July 17, 1974
Page 24
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24-Uklah Dally Journal, Uklah, Calif. Wednesday, July 17, 1974 Students revise scientific theory By JAMS8 J. DOYLE PASADENA, Calif. (UPD Long standing sciantifk theories are difficult to change, but two students at the California Institute of Technology have revised one dealing with a phenomenon of great potential utUity. The theory deals with superconductivity, the ability of certain metals to carry electric currents with no resistance if the temperature of the conductor is low enough. The old idea was that atoms had to occur in a precise crystalline pattern before superconductivity could occur. But William Johnson, 25-year- old graduate student from Bowling Green, Ohio, and Sui- Joe Poon, 22, undergraduate from Hong Kong, showed that atoms need not be in a pattern but could be Jumbled together at random. Both are students of renowned metallurgist Dr. Pol Duwez who had been on the track of that discovery for 10 years. So far the finding may only be academic, but Duwez said he hoped it will lead to a End of the big ripoff ? AUSTIN, Tex. (UPI) T - Texas produces 26 per cent of the nation's energy and yet it is the only state in the nation that does not regulate the companies that sell power and phone service to consumers. The fuel crisis is threatening to change all that. Fuel shortages and soaring prices have enraged consumers, turned municipal leaders against the utility giants for the first time and given supporters of regulation their first chance to crack the control that industry lobbyists have held for years over the Texas Legislature. "The reason we don't have a utilities commission in Texas all goes back to the fact that if the lobbyists do not want anything, then it won't happen until the people raise so much cain the legislators have to listen to them," said state Sen. Ron Clower of Garland, a Dallas suburb. "Generally this legislature will not move unless the lobby wants them to." Clower, a freshman Democratic senator, sponsored an unsuccessful bill to regulate telephone companies during his first legislative session. He predicts he'll succeed on a second try next year with a bill to regulate phone afld power companies. Texas AFL-CIO President Harry Hubbard, longtime advocate of utility regulation, agrees. "Texas has been controlled by the utilities, oil, chemical and insurance lobbyists," Hubbard said. "Because of the closeness of the utility company lobby with those that controlled the natural resources, they were able to just practically control our state government. ' "But the consumers are feeling the crunch and the legislators are becoming more concerned about the consumers' problems and less concerned about what the lobby is going to do to them." At a hearing in San Antonio last month, outraged consumers hissed and spat upon Oscar Wyatt, chairman of the board of Coastal States Producing Co. —one of the nation's largest energy companies. Coastal's chronic curtailments of natural gas deliveries to municipal power plants in Austin, San Antonio and Corpus Christi played a large part in souring city leaders on the present set-up. Texas' major cities previously joined industry lobbyists in opposing proposals for a state regulatory agency, because it would mean giving up the power they now have to approve utility rate increases. "The larger municipalities have always jealously guarded their regulatory power," said Randall Wood, spokeaman for Common Cause. "It has traditionally been the place in the state for the major ripoff and the city councilman have been very reluctant to give it up," Wood said. The city fathers and major state politicians, Wood said, no longer can afford to align themselves with the industry. batter understanding of one of the moat fascinating properties of the metallic state. ' He said some years ago his laboratory created amorphous, metals, those without crystalline structure. "Then we got amorphous alloys with magnetic qualities proving that a crystalline structure was not necessary for' .magnetism. Now, after looking for 10 years, we have an amorphous alloy that is super­ conducting." Duwez said be expects a burst of interest all over the scientific world. Johnson and Poon were working with an alloy of gold and .lanthanum, a rare earth element, when they made discovery. They were lool for something else. "We were working on sui conductivity in primitive, or simple, cubic structures and we came across this," Johnson said. .Johnson and Pooh combined 20 per cent gold with 80 per cent lanthanum in a crucible and melted it. The alloy was frozen by a tremendously fast cooling method developed by Duwes. ' A drop of the molten aQoy waa spilled from the crucible andIan electronic eye triggered a pneumatic hammer that slammed the drop onto a copper anvil. The alloy quickly spread over the heat absorbing copper and solidified almost instantly into a foil. The freezing technique is so fast it doesn't give the atoms. time to line up in a crystal pattern. So they solidified into a new, random arrangement with new chemical bonding properties. __ ______ Duwes, who is professor of applied physics at Cal Tech, said, however, the alloy can be obtained only in thin foils, about two thousandths of an inch thick. Thai thiness is required to get the 450 degrees* Fahrenheit below zero cooling needed for superconductivity. Johnson said that because the/ material is glassy and suffers no damage from radiation, it might be useful in an environment where you require something immune to radiation damage. Such an environment could be in space. OPKNS TONIGHT — Catharine Bach and Jeff Bridges notice the consternation of Clint Eastwood, as they take a breather bet- bank heists. , "Thunderbolt and Ughtfoot," in which Eastwood and Bridges play the title roles, will open tonight at the Ukiah Theatre through release by United Artists. m iMon-Sat. 9:00 a.m. • »:00 p.m. 731 So. State! PURITY •riendly Super MarkeU AD ErTECTWE JUUy 17-fclvtu-JULy 23, 1974 OF GAME.RANW ENDED ON JULy 16,1974-. ALL WINNING CARPS MUST BE PR65eKT £P 6yjOLy2^ 1974- PUR try SERVING Yt )U R SAVING YOU MOKE! REGULAR GROUND mf Bm aWg MORE ^M(^* CUBE STEAKS v »+l~ FRANKS MEATUS. aMfc / KE&AL- ALL B-<2Z. VAR. _% 50V LUNCHMEAT6 XW ON AU-PUr?CHA6E5 EXCEPT BE&R.WlHFZ/ TOBACCO, DAlRy PRODUCTS^NiA&AZINiES _ | fU*p4AA*J*Aje^ GOOD JUL/17-23/1«?74- KRAFT Wi^tfui/Q &v ^n/... 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