Translator:Henyee TranslationsEditor:Henyee Translations
In your opinion what do you think we should do?
Secretary He was asking for his advice in a humble manner.
Lu Zhou became silent.
This was a difficult question to answer.
Putting it bluntly, he wasnt an expert in international relations. He was only responsible for matters in scientific research.
Lu Zhou thought for a bit and slowly said, Im not the one that should answer this question. Im just a scholar, Im not a diplomat. The only thing I can promise is that before 2025, we will create a demonstration reactor.
Lu Zhou paused for a second. He looked at Secretary He in the eye and continued, If you really want to hear my opinion, I think the key to this problem is how we plan on using this technology.
He Mingxuan: Plan on using?
Lu Zhou nodded and said, Yes.
It was very difficult to monopolize a known technology.
Whenever the use of a piece of technology was present, the difficulty in solving that technology would reduce exponentially.
An example of this was the Manhattan Project. This project gathered all of the top western non-German scientists. More than 100,000 people participated in this project, in which they spent two billion USD to successfully create the first atomic bomb. President Truman even complained that the cost of developing an atomic bomb was more expensive than buying the entire universe
Obviously, Trumans complaint was an overstatement. But it still showed how expensive the costs were at that time.
However, the nuclear tests that followed obviously didnt cost as much.
If the STAR-2 project was successful, China would be able to start an energy revolution, but it probably wouldnt monopolize this technology.
The principle of maximizing gains was to use ones technological advantage in a field to expand ones influence and become the standard in the field, which would then cause everyone else to try and catch up to that standard.
Of course, the most important thing was that they could use fusion energy as leverage, to exchange for Chinas political and governance interests.
Secretary He went silent for a while.
The thing you just talked about, we havent discussed it in the meeting.
Lu Zhou nodded and said, I understand, after all, these things are far away in the future.
But what I want to say is that if we are only planning to be a participant in the international community, then we can give requests of our owns in exchange with Americas demands.
However, if for example, we want to become the one that sets the rules
Lu Zhou went silent for a bit before he continued, Then the suffering and obstacles on the road are inevitable.
When Secretary He heard this, he couldnt help but hold his breath.
The one that sets the rules
This really is an emotionally intense sentence.
He tightened his fists, which were resting on his knees, and slowly relaxed. He kept repeating this motion and took a deep breath.
He wasnt a decision-maker; he was only someone that conveyed opinions. However, at this moment, he felt the need to ask on behalf of Director Lu and the countrys higher-ups.
Secretary Hes heart was beating out of his chest. What happens to the STAR-2 project if we exit from ITER?
Lu Zhou thought for a bit and answered confidently, There will be an impact, but not a lot.
He Mingxuan finally had a smile on his face.
Since you put it like this, we are relieved! I will convey your opinions to the higher-ups.
Lu Zhou nodded.
Please make sure you do.
The secretary didnt want to stay in the office for long.
Secretary He planned to immediately return to Beijing, so he chugged the tea and bid farewell to Lu Zhou.
Lu Zhou accompanied Secretary He downstairs and was about to leave as well. He was contemplating whether or not he should say goodbye to Principal Xu when he suddenly ran into him.
When Principal Xu saw Lu Zhou standing downstairs alone, he walked over with a stack of documents in his hand and smiled.
You guys are done?
Yeah. Lu Zhou smiled awkwardly and said, My apologies for borrowing your office.
Its fine, not a big deal, your matters are more important. Principal Xu waved his hand and smiled. He handed a document to Lu Zhou and said, I had nothing to do when you were in my office, so I went over to the academic affairs office and finished the hiring process for you.
Lu Zhou took the document from Principal Xus hands and asked, Hiring process?
Professor Xu smiled and said, Didnt you say you wanted to be a professor here? Sign this document, and youll be a member of our mathematics department!
Lu Zhou was surprised. Already?
Principal Xu said, Its better to get this sorted now before you sleep on it and change your mind.
Lu Zhou laughed and said, Thats not going to happen. Okay then, Ill sign this document. Ill bring it back to you tomorrow.
Principal Xu: Are you not going to ask about the salary?
Lu Zhou smiled awkwardly.
Its on the document anyway. Ill just look at like later. Im not in a hurry either. Or maybe you can tell me now?
Ill just tell you now. If you read it later, youll probably think its too low and blame me.
Principal Xu smiled and pause for a second. He then said, As for your compensation, actually we had a meeting about this last year. Our final decision is an annual salary of 4 million yuan, with 5 million in housing subsidies I know you probably dont care about this pocket change, but this is the highest compensation we can give you. As for your research funding, since youre already the manager of a 40 billion yuan project, Im guessing you dont need any additional research funding, and I wont embarrass myself with an offer. But if you have any other needs, make sure to tell me, and we will try our best to help you!
Lu Zhou smiled and said, What do you mean by pocket change? This is higher than my salary at Princeton.
Shuimu University was the top university in China, and the salary for their Nobel Prize level scholar was only 1.7 million yuan a year.
A 2 million annual salary was basically the upper limit for academicians.
As for the eight-figure salaries posted in newspapers, most of them included benefits such as housing and insurance. The most significant one of them all was scientific research funding.
Jin Ling University gave him an annual salary of four million, which was double the usual maximum professor salary. Principal Xu himself had to have gone through a lot of debates and discussions to secure this for Lu Zhou.
For Lu Zhou, he didnt need nor care about the annual salary.
But he was quite touched by this gesture from his alma mater
Once the energy problem was solved, many other problems would be solved as well. However, there would be more problems that follow.
Just looking at the present alone, the cake hadnt even finished baking yet. At most, the creamy buttery smell was coming out of the oven. However, people were already desperate to eat the cake. What would happen when the cake was finally out of the oven?
What happened today at ITER was only a preview for the future.
An office in Beijing.
Director Lu was smoking next to a window when he looked at his watch.
The meeting would begin in around an hour.
Director Lus head hurt when he thought about the recent events, and he pinched his eyebrows.
Even though they anticipated the actions by the US, the US executed so fast that many people, including him, were caught by surprise.
It was obvious that the Americans were coming after the STAR-2 project.
Suddenly, he heard a knock from his office door.
Director Lu sighed and put out the cigarette. He walked to his desk and sat down.
His secretary opened the door and walked in.
Director Lu looked at Secretary He and asked, Have you met with Professor Lu yet?
He Mingxuan nodded.
We met in the afternoon.
He then immediately began to report on what happened during his conversation with Lu Zhou.
After hearing the secretarys report, Director Lu tapped his index finger on the desk and went silent for a bit.
Is that what he said?
He Mingxuan nodded seriously and said, Yes He promised me that even if China withdraws from ITER, the STAR-2 demonstration reactor project will not be significantly affected.
Director Lus furrowed brows finally relaxed, and he nodded in relief.
Okay, I understand!
This was probably the best news he heard all day.
This should do the trick!