## About Dr. George Safonov

Dr. George Michael Safonov 11/19/1920 - 6/1/2014

During a ten-year period straddling the WW-II years, George Michael Safonov studied and worked at the California Institute of Technology. There, he earned a BS (1943) in electrical engineering and an MS (1948) and a Ph.D (1949) in physics. During the war years, he worked on Caltech's rocket program (exterior ballistics); and, during the postwar years, he taught undergraduate physics.

In the 1950s and 1960s he concentrated on theoretical and experimental work on fission-chain reacting systems. He developed equations permitting the survey of critical parameters of the connected spectrum of fast to slow reactors and published in the proceedings of the second Atoms for Peace Conference his equations and surveys of a new class of reactors - the externally moderated systems. One such system, the cavity reactor, lent itself to the direct conversion of fission fragment energy to electricity. He demonstrated this conversion concept via experiments on cells irradiated at two neutron-source reactors. During the early 1970s he identified cavity reactor systems where fission fragments would pump high-power lasers. The fission-laser concept was later demonstrated by other workers using his basic cell design. Invited lectures on his various fission-related works were presented at Caltech, UCLA, UCB and also at Stanford where he supervised a Ph.D candidate's fission-fragment research. In the 1980's, he studied various peaceful and military applications of fission and the use of particle beams for missile defence.

Since his semi-retirement in the early 1980s, he worked to bring into coarse focus important features of the unconventional universe model described here. That model, called the “photon-nonphoton universe”, involves the symbiotic coexistence of two basic particle species: photons and nonphotons (i.e., photons fuse to form nonphotons which fission into photons). By combining old Caltech-era ideas on particles and the methodologies used for his fission-system studies with a simple approach to Planck's photon spectrum, a rough definition of a photon-nonphoton universe's features became possible.