“Turn Iron Into Gold? Yes, We Can!”

This is a statement given by a Romanian scientist, Horia Hulubei, head of the Nuclear Institute in Măgurele, Romania, related to the capacities of the ELI system that is to be completed by 2015. ELI, standing for Extreme Light Infrastructure, will be the world’s most powerful laser, with a power in the range of thousands of trillion of Watts. It is intended to be used to dispose of nuclear waste in a matter of seconds, by a method known as “transmutation by iradiation”.

The same method could be used, according to the mentioned scientist, to turn ordinary metals into gold. “We can obtain gold out of iron, the alchemists were right, but the costs of doing are simply too high”, claims the scientist, who added: “it is more profitable to just mine for it. But, once we start our laser…”

Another use of Romania’s mega-laser could be the obtaining of a rare element, molibden 99, used in medicine. The results of the tests that will be run at Măgurele are to be later auctioned and turned into very profitable businesses, according to the scientists. Romania is going to spend a third of a billion Euros in order to complete the ELI project.

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