Unilever in search for new chairman – Sky News

(Reuters) – Anglo-Dutch consumer products group Unilever is searching for a new chairman to replace Michael Treschow, who has been in the job since 2007, Sky News reported on Sunday.

Boeing patents laser-powered fusion-fission jet engine (that’s truly impossible)

Assume the brace position: Boeing has received a patent for, I kid you not, a laser-powered fusion-fission jet propulsion system. Boeing envisions that this system could replace both rocket and turbofan engines, powering everything from spacecraft to missiles to airplanes.

The patent, US 9,068,562, combines inertial confinement fusion, fission, and a turbine that generates electricity. It sounds completely crazy because it is. Currently, this kind of engine is completely unrealistic given our mastery of fusion, or rather our lack thereof. Perhaps in the future (the distant, distant future that is), this could be a rather ingenious solution. For now, it’s yet another patent head-scratcher.

To begin with, imagine the silhouette of a big turbofan engine, like you’d see on a commercial jetliner. Somewhere in the middle of the engine there is a fusion chamber, with a number of very strong lasers focused on a single point. A hohlraum (pellet) containing a mix of deuterium and tritium (hydrogen isotopes) is placed at this focal point. The lasers are all turned on at the same instant, creating massive pressure on the pellet, which implodes and causes the hydrogen atoms to fuse. (This is called inertial confinement fusion, as opposed to the magnetic confinement fusion that is carried out in a tokamak.)

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Jarden close to acquiring Waddingon Group for $1.4 billion: source

(Reuters) – Consumer goods company Jarden Corp is close to acquiring disposable tableware maker Waddington Group for around $1.4 billion, according to a source familiar with the matter.

VIDEO: Malala at refugee school on 18th birthday

Education campaigner Malala Yousafzai has turned 18, and marked the day by opening a school for Syrian girls in an informal refugee settlement in Lebanon’s Beka’a Valley.

Iran nuclear talks ‘in final phase’

Talks to strike a provisional agreement on Iran’s nuclear programme are in the “final phase”, the French foreign minister believes.

Wildfires in Washington state threaten homes, prompt evacuations

(Reuters) – Two wildfires in north-central Washington state have burned 19,700 acres (80 square km) and are threatening 59 buildings and prompting evacuations, officials said on Sunday.