The little stream was a jumble of boulders, testimony of the floods, with phreatophytes around the boulders like implanted spears. Deffeyes obviously was happy and without a fear in the world. When a swift-rising wind blew dust in his face, he mooed. Working in cold sunshine with his orange-and-black conical cap on his head, he appeared to be the Gnome of Princeton, with evident ambition to escalate to Zurich. To make a recovery operation worthwhile, he said, he would have to get five ounces of silver per ton. The figures would tum out to be better than that. Before long, he would have a little plasticlined pond of weak cyanide, looked after by a couple of technicians, down where the ore from this mine had been milled. A blue zakelijke energie streak in the tailings there would come in at fifty-eight ounces a tonricher than any tailings he had ever found in Nevada. “You put cyanide on that ore, the silver leaps out of it,” he would say. “I have enough cyanide there to kill Cincinnati. People have a love-hate relationship with cyanide. Abelson showed that lightning acts on carbon dioxide and other atmospheric components to make hydrogen cyanide, and hydrogen cyanide polymerizes and later reacts with water to form amino acids, which are the components of proteinsand tl1at may be how life began. Phil Abelson is an editor at Science. He’s a geochemist, and he worked on the Manhattan Project. To get the silver out of here at an acceptable price, you need small-scale technology. You need miniaturized equipment, simple techniques. In the nineteenth century, they made sagebrush fires to heat the brine to dissolve tl1e silver chloride. When mercury picked up the silver, they knew they had ‘the real stuff’ from the squeak. A mercury-and-silver mixture is what the dentist uses, and when he mashes it into your tooth it makes the same squeak.” Deffeyes’ methodology would depend on more than sagebrush and sound. In time, he would have a portable laboratory zakelijke energie vergelijken there, size of a two-hole privy, and in it would be, among other things, a silver single-ion electrode and an atomic-absorption spectrophotometer. He could turn on a flame, close two switches, and see at once the amount of silver in a sample.