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Fusion Powered airplane?

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posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 07:14 AM
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With Lockheed saying they are about to give us Fusion Reactors I keep reading you can use this for aircraft. How does that work? Electric engine or some sort of propulsion? Can Fusion tech be used like a Rocket? Plasma? Vasimr ike?




posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 07:21 AM
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Sounds cool we could use some jetpacks too while were at it.

Think electric thrust FTW!

We could also make iron man armors for everyone!



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 07:22 AM
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originally posted by: Xeven
With Lockheed saying they are about to give us Fusion Reactors I keep reading you can use this for aircraft. How does that work? Electric engine or some sort of propulsion? Can Fusion tech be used like a Rocket? Plasma? Vasimr ike?

A rocket basically. With a "normal" rocket you burn hydrogen and oxygen chemically and this provides thrust. With a fusion reactor you are fusing hydrogen to get helium and tons of heat energy (far more than chemical) and the resulting energy propels your craft.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 07:25 AM
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a reply to: Xeven

From Space.com


Fusion rockets would harness the energy released when the nuclei of two or more atoms combine. Our sun and other stars are fusion-powered, converting this energy to light; the same principle also gives hydrogen bombs their immense destructive power.



Hurdles to overcome

Fusion rockets likely won't be powering a spacecraft anytime soon, however. Researchers still haven't developed a fusion reactor here on Earth that generates more energy than it takes in, after all, despite billions of dollars devoted to the effort over several decades.

But studying how to make fusion work for spacecraft engines could help chip away at the problem, Grunsfeld said, potentially bringing to reality a technology famous for always being "30 years away."


So they have NO clue how to harness it energy potential as of yet. BUT I see it as one step closer to achieving space travel!



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 07:44 AM
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The heat generated from the fusion reactor replaces the combustible material (aviation fuel) in a "conventional" jet engine layout.

There are hundreds of other "possible" applications using electro-hydrodynamics, metamaterials , weird boundary layer effects or resonant cavity EM type drives- but in terms of the here and now ( constraints of Budgets and the Earths atmospheric density) - they seem a long way away.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 08:18 AM
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Here is a proposed fission powered cruise missile...
blog.seattlepi.com...



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 08:52 AM
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a reply to: Xeven

Superheated steam driving a turbine (closed condensing system)transferred to a propeller via reduction gearing. A type of turboprop.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 08:55 AM
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Various ways. If the fusion plasma is sufficiently dense and energetic, you can vent fusion plasma into what would otherwise be the combustor of a fairly typical jet engine.

If you're getting loads of neutrons, you can heat a working fluid like water (or air itself, if you've got enough...) and do the same.

Or you can make plasma and shoot it through a tube using MHD for thrust.

Can also super-augment a jet using an MHD afterburner.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 10:09 AM
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a reply to: Bedlam

Just out of interest Bedlam (as the resident go to guy for energetic reactions), are MHD type technologies mature /powerful enough to be applicable on atmospheric flight systems in terms of actual generation of thrust ?



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 10:14 AM
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originally posted by: Jukiodone
a reply to: Bedlam

Just out of interest Bedlam (as the resident go to guy for energetic reactions), are MHD type technologies mature /powerful enough to be applicable on atmospheric flight systems in terms of actual generation of thrust ?


Hm. Well, I opened that bag, didn't I.

The short answer: yes. The medium answer: Oh, hell, yes.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 10:32 AM
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originally posted by: Xeven
With Lockheed saying they are about to give us Fusion Reactors I keep reading you can use this for aircraft. How does that work? Electric engine or some sort of propulsion? Can Fusion tech be used like a Rocket? Plasma? Vasimr ike?


Actually, the fusion reactor is just a power source. If I'm not mistaken, it's one that produces more energy than any single aircraft engine currently in use and/or the combined energy production from any configuration of multiple engines currently in use today.

The real question should be; "What type of propulsion system would require this much energy?"

For the answer to that question, I will refer you to another thread here on ATS that has a video containing the answer. Specifically at the 11:15 mark.

The weird part is that he's describing programs that were in existence long ago.

Here's the thread; www.abovetopsecret.com...





posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 11:58 AM
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a reply to: Flatfish


The process of fusion basically just produces energy primarily in the form of heat, that's all.

It's just that a huge amount of heat can be generated from quite a small amount of hydrogen, if the fusion process is one that results in helium from hydrogen.

One cylinder of hydrogen could run a turboprop aircraft and keep it in the air for a year, with a compact generator, according to Lockheed.


edit on 7-2-2015 by korkythecat because: grammar



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 02:05 PM
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a reply to: DjembeJedi

Was that article written after the announcement that one of these aircraft devcs had found a way to make it work?



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 02:37 PM
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originally posted by: DjembeJedi
a reply to: Xeven

From Space.com


Fusion rockets would harness the energy released when the nuclei of two or more atoms combine. Our sun and other stars are fusion-powered, converting this energy to light; the same principle also gives hydrogen bombs their immense destructive power.



Hurdles to overcome

Fusion rockets likely won't be powering a spacecraft anytime soon, however. Researchers still haven't developed a fusion reactor here on Earth that generates more energy than it takes in, after all, despite billions of dollars devoted to the effort over several decades.

But studying how to make fusion work for spacecraft engines could help chip away at the problem, Grunsfeld said, potentially bringing to reality a technology famous for always being "30 years away."


So they have NO clue how to harness it energy potential as of yet. BUT I see it as one step closer to achieving space travel!




That was until now..........

In 2014, Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works announced the development of a high beta fusion reactor they expect to yield a functioning 100 megawatt prototype by 2017 and to be ready for regular operation by 2022.[103][104][105] Deep space exploration as well as higher-velocity lower-cost space transport services in general would be enabled by this compact fusion reactor technology

source

The writing is on the wall for fossil fuels MUCH sooner than anyone expected. This is a game changer and yet no-one seems to understand the ramifications. I'm amazed!!



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 03:21 PM
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I have the thoughts a lot of different energy sources have been invented but the problem is that they would negatively effect our economy and cause people to be less dependent on the economy. They will never be allowed to be used. Now, if they design a system that nobody can replicate at Lockheed, then we cannot make one to use ourselves. This way we are all still dependent on the government and the economic impact will not be too bad.

It isn't hard to understand fusion. It does happen to a small extent in burning a round piece of hardwood. The field getting sucked back lowers heat output but extends the burn time greatly. The same principle governs electric loss from high power power lines. The energy forms a field to bounce back loss. The principles are used all over, but people do not understand what is happening. Fusion does occur, just like on the sun but on a much smaller level.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 05:43 PM
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a reply to: rickymouse

I see your point but to quote directly from the Lockheed skunkworks website :-

"we are on the fast track to developing nuclear fusion reactors to serve the world’s ever-growing energy needs"

link to lockheed Martin website - fusion

So it would seem they are planning to make this available world-wide, it's massive news and who knows the scientists and engineers at Lockheed may have just saved the world from the worst ravages of the consequences of continued fossil fuel use.
We may have a lot to thank them for.

So much for the powers that be deliberately holding back on energy technology, from the website it would seem they want to share this with the world thus *issing on the bonfire of that little conspiracy theory!



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 05:55 PM
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originally posted by: korkythecat
So much for the powers that be deliberately holding back on energy technology, from the website it would seem they want to share this with the world thus *issing on the bonfire of that little conspiracy theory!



Um, well, Naval Sea Systems and Naval Weapons classified the hell out of Bussard's fusion device for a while, and they're still looking at it without the assistance of EMC2.

But I'm glad they're working on it. And hopefully, the thing will do p-B11. But I'd take anything.



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 10:16 PM
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So when is this going to happen? When will they release these generators for us to make electricity cheaply?



posted on Feb, 7 2015 @ 10:37 PM
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originally posted by: rickymouse
So when is this going to happen? When will they release these generators for us to make electricity cheaply?


Well I work for an Energy Company which mainly operated Gas Turbines - Aircraft Engines and some fossil coal. If I tell you our business plan runs out to 30 years without mention of these technologies...well its not going to happen in my lifetime.

Add to the fact that everyone in the world seems to be sitting on a shale gas reservoir which can provide cheap gas for the next 50 years, the alternatives (nuclear) are just too expensive.

I dont know how dangerous these Fusion Rectors are.

Incidentally do you know that the cost to produce electricity is probably a third of what you pay, transmission lines and national infrastructure and retailers make up the the rest. Also, its a massive waste, you bump up the current because you lose so much over the power lines then reduce it so you can go down the street and then reduce it further at your house. If they can replace power lines with a more efficient cable (i am sure there is a lighter thinner and stronger one, maybe graphite) then you need even less power...

Finally with better storage technology (batteries) emerging, you can effectively live "off grid" in sunny climates through solar chargers and perhaps a diesel generator for back up.

But this is about propulsion...is it easier to make a fusion reactor than a nuclear one, because AFAIK we havnt managed to make nuclear reactors small and cost effective enough to propel aircraft, does fusion not have the potential for a meltdown or is it a totally different concept. Think I need to read up on Fusion.



posted on Feb, 8 2015 @ 12:44 AM
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originally posted by: DjembeJedi
a reply to: Xeven

From Space.com


Fusion rockets would harness the energy released when the nuclei of two or more atoms combine. Our sun and other stars are fusion-powered, converting this energy to light; the same principle also gives hydrogen bombs their immense destructive power.



Hurdles to overcome

Fusion rockets likely won't be powering a spacecraft anytime soon, however. Researchers still haven't developed a fusion reactor here on Earth that generates more energy than it takes in, after all, despite billions of dollars devoted to the effort over several decades.

But studying how to make fusion work for spacecraft engines could help chip away at the problem, Grunsfeld said, potentially bringing to reality a technology famous for always being "30 years away."


So they have NO clue how to harness it energy potential as of yet. BUT I see it as one step closer to achieving space travel!

Except Lockheed says they have solved the problem, so that's not necessarily true any more.




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