"There's been a revolution over the past year and a half," Dr. Lacy is quoted as saying in a news article published in Science on July 1. Science reporter Richard Stone wrote an article discussing the helium-3 crisis and highlighted several technological solutions in the making. After the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, helium-3 for nuclear materials detection came into high demand with 2010 projected as the year that US stockpiles would be completely depleted. As a result of this projection, the DOE and other government agencies incentivized researchers and businesses to develop alternatives to helium-3 for nuclear materials detection. As a result, the helium-3 stock pile is no longer in immediate danger of depletion, and there are now many alternatives to helium-3 that are more affordable. Dr. Lacy provided inside information on the Helium-3 market, boron-coated straw technology, and applications we plan to dive into in the future.
Full article here on Science website.
The banner image shows a prototype lithium-based scintillator at OakRidge National Laboratory, from the article at Science Magazine.