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Clean energy - a device with the power of the Sun?

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posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:26 PM
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I was reading about nuclear power just the other day and I stumbled on an idea which, I must say, is quite original. .

Nuclear power usually works with fissible materials. A core of uranium slowly deacys into smaller bits and the resulting heat boils water, which in turn drives a turbine. The whole concept makes zero CO2 emission, BUT the uranium byproducts are highly radioactive, and I don't have to remind you all what happened to Tchernobyl or Fukushima.

But some have suggested to fuse light elements instead. Thermonuclear fusion. The idea is genius in the fact that it makes no troublesome radioactive waste, and is a process very similar to the one happening inside the Sun itself.

As Delbert Larson, PhD, explains:


In fusion (...) a nucleus of hydrogen containing one proton (...) and one neutron (...) collides with a nucleus of hydrogen containing one proton and two neutrons. When they collide, they produce a helium nucleus (with two protons and two neutrons), a free neutron, and lots of energy. Hence, fusion power will be safe, since it is not based on controlling a chain reaction like what we've seen with fission. There are no long-lived nuclear waste products produced. And the fuel - hydrogen - is enormously abundant, since it is found in water.


A true kind of clean nuclear energy?

Now the main obstacle to achieve fusion is, of course heat. That's why most "cold fusion" devices have bad reputation - "cold" and "fusion" are practically inseparable, you usually just can't have fusion without heat.

Unless, as Larson suggests, you smash the to-be-fused particles into one another. You don't need heat - the energy of the acceleration does the job instead. So in a way, you could achieve "cold" fusion using a small particle accelerator instead of an impossibly hot furnace.

My main concern with this technology is collision miss (no accelerators is perfect), but the article addresses this issue by electron-cooling the miss particles.

What do you think? Do you think we'll one day become independent from fossil fuels or uranium, and instead use "cold" fusion to power our society?





posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:34 PM
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a reply to: swanne

Hi swanne, first off nice thread. My thoughts for the future, we will have to find a different source of energy. Our Earth has many untapped sources for energy. The sad part is Ford motor company could design a car to get 100 mpg, this would in turn put big oil out of business so it's a lose lose. Your plan of "cold" fusion sounds good!



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:42 PM
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originally posted by: Quantum12
The sad part is Ford motor company could design a car to get 100 mpg, this would in turn put big oil out of business so it's a lose lose.


This used to be true. But this is starting to change.

Energy is the new Gold. Up here in Quebec our electricity comes from a corporation who built big hydroelectric dams. This corp (I don't want to mention its name) was the first to tap and efficiently distribute the new resource. So it gained near monopole over the electricity demand. Now the corporation is so successful, we are seeing electrical "pumps" sprout here and there, all over Quebec, for the purpose of charging electric cars. Slowly but surely, one corporation is taking over the energy sector, a sector which used to be dominated exclusively by big oil corps.

It's all about being the first to tap a new, more efficient resource.


edit on 9-6-2016 by swanne because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:44 PM
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a reply to: swanne

That is amazing, I wish they would come south to the US and use their technology.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:44 PM
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a reply to: swanne

Plenty of threads on ATS about nuclear fusion. Here are a few:

ATS Science thread: Two new promising fusion concepts discusses the Helion device (inertial confinement, lasers) and an aneutronic reactor called Crossfire (electrostatic confinement – fusor, with magnetic confinement components)

ATS News thread: Lockheed says makes breakthrough on Fusion Energy project is the main new discussion thread about LM saying they can make a compact fusion reactor (CFR) in five years. Then nothing much more has come out until last month explaining multiple magnetic confinement scheme.

ATS Science thread: Nuclear fusion nears efficiency break-even discusses Sandia’s Z Machine nearing break-even (between energy produced and energy used (laser/inertial confinement)

ATS Energy thread: Sandia Z Accelerator - The Z Machine discusses Sandia’s Z Machine from back in 2005! It may be in the wrong forum which is why it is only one page long.

ATS link: A question about fusion where the question is "If the plasma gets hot then why wont the walls of the reactor melt?" was asked (TEOT provided some answers and has been keeping reactor news up to date there). I think the last couple postings are about Wendelstein 7-X device in Germany that is making headway.

I have all these links because I was going to make a fusion page! Kind of order it all up and explain it with all the above links to various other places. There is bunch to know/understand (wrap your head around) when it comes to fusion. Missing collisions is no big since the plasma is magnetically contained. The neutronic reaction does create radioactivity but the half-life is something like 50 years.

Nuclear fusion will happen if two things happen first. One, power storage since these devices will be operational 24x7x365 because they are difficult to start up/shut down. Two, there is an efficient energy transmission line created (either room temperature superconductor or bundled carbon nanotubes). When these two items become news, fusion will be "announced".



edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: grammar nazi

edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: spelling nazi



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:48 PM
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The main issue is the torus shape of the field... it would be better to produce a primer field that is spherical in shape... the excess helium could suspend the core, go through a jet system to spin the core in any gyroscopic direction desired instead of being limited to just a dipole torus.

Of course that may produce gravity which would make it a particle accumilator... so the materials would have to be constructed out of what particles one would want to accumilate.

Im sure theres a nice combination out there that palys well with each other as far as metals and noble gases go.

The problem with helium as a by product is of course releasing it into the atmosphere would start forming the earth into a gas giant as we started depleting all of the water from the surface by likely extracting it out of thin air... in a condesation humidity cycle though it may be viable for a good long time, especially with the expected amounts of rain from the planetary shift into a more temparate environment to cliamate change which is expected to change seasons to two as dry and rainy... so perhaps such would simply balance things out.

I would hope there would be thorough studies done... instead of just break through tech and run with it, without accessing environmental impacts and sustainability based on projections as well as current models.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:53 PM
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originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF
The neutronic reaction does create radioactivity but the half-life is something like 50 years.

You mean, more like 14 minutes? Neutrons really don't last long, they usually decay into proton+electron. Which is pretty harmless.


Nuclear fusion will happen if two things happen first. One, power storage since these devices will be operational 24x7x365 because they are difficult to start up/shut down. Two, there is an efficient energy transmission line created (either room temperature superconductor or bundled carbon nanotubes). When these two items become new, fusion will be "announced".



Good points.

The designs of old still involved heating water to drive a turbine generator, is this still true in the designs you've seen? I wonder if placing thermopiles around the fusion event could convert heat more directly into electricity?



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 04:58 PM
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a reply to: BigBrotherDarkness

The excess helium would be re-used to cool down the superconducting magnets keeping the plasma from touching the reactor walls.

A shameless plug for my thread: Has The Great Flow Battery Battle Started? that is all about grid-level storage using redox flow batteries (and to some extent other flow battery types).

Fusion has been studied for years. Fission plants were made because they could not do fusion. So they settled for the nuke plants we all know by name.


edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: grammar nazi



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 05:07 PM
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a reply to: swanne

The neutron bouncing off the reactor walls, over time, and sheer number, will cause the walls to become radioactive over time. But that half-life is short lived, 50 years. By 100 years the entire reactor can be recycled with no harmful radiation.

There are two types of fusion reactions. The deuterium-tritium (these are isotopes of hydrogen: D is called "heavy water, T is what you think of when somebody says, "hydrogen") produces neutronic reaction because it emits a neutron. The other type is aneutronic because the reaction is controlled to create enegy directly. The simplest type will use Boron11 and a proton. The neutronic reaction creates heat which is circulated away from the heated plasma which in turn heats water to turn a turbine. Aneutronic reactors need heat above 1 billion °C (something like 10, I think) and they create energy directly.

edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: clarity



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 05:26 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

The Li Po is my current fav consumer tech battery... I havent really looked at the thread, but Ill take a look at it here soon thatnks for the invite towards it. I was looking at what get called depolarizations (misnomer from 50s) just the other day in a random bout of research that dipped from celluar oxidation in biology to battery usage... so itll be interesting to see any link between the few hours spent and the tech thread youre pointing at.

Reading this and your reply however reminds me of Telsas fabled car device... makes me think of the transitor which is one of those strange cystal effects that pulls in power especially in the case of old vaccum tube technology... might seem antiquated but Im sure glossing old tech thats been deemed no longer state of the art can find some new application with these newer style breakthroughs... sort of like how older drugs are being looked at for any off label uses that went of the main course of prescribing, that a certain yound fellow was in trouble marking up under a different trade name not long ago.

I personally think resonance is the way to go... but of course, science is just dipping ankles at the moment of seriously looking at wave forms which have to do with how some things resonate naturally with eachother on the atomic or subatomic scale instead of just extract or repulse.

Like it could be possible to have one material on one side shake lose energy that one material on another side needs and what they shake off passing through the middle generates the power as the shake of get attracted and of course a 3rd or fourth doing the same for a closed loop exchange sort of like an atomic food chain where ones waste is the need of another in a loop of materials until theres a closed loop that feeds all in the cycle of need or transference between the materials.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 05:29 PM
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Plasma, (no, not the platelette carrying stuff)

First off, plasma is a gas stripped of electrons. You have seen them before in compact fluorescent light bulbs, neon signs, and the novelty lightening globe you rub your hand over and the "lightening" follows your hand. Those are examples of a small amount of gas in an evacuated tube that when charged with electricity emits light.

Wikipedia: Plasma (physics)

Electric Cage Death Match: Fission vs Fusion

Every single story on fusion starts the same: fission is the splitting of massive particles to smaller particles releasing energy; fusion is the combining of lighter particles to release energy--like the process that occurs in the sun.

And that is where the problems start. The density of the sun/stars is/are massive and it is that density (i.e., gravity) that allows the fusion process to work in outer space. Here on earth the density of the plasma is very low and instead of gravity, magnets (magnetic fields) or electric cages are used to confine the heated plasma. Unlike the sun and stars the only particle used to create fusion is hydrogen (for now). The plasmas created in the lab cannot use other atoms in them for fusion (again, for now) because the plasma de-stabilizes.

Since the simplest of fusion reactions creates a high energy neutron particle the electric cage idea lost favor in the area of research with magnetic confinement the winner. But fret not, for the laser will come to the rescue!

When I say, "Hydrogen" you say, "What isotope"

The lightest particle on the periodic table is Hydrogen. But if you add another neutrino to the atom you get a heavy version of the same atom with all the same properties called an isotope. The term is usually thrown around with radioactivity because that is where it was first used: radioactive isotope. But not all isotopes are radioactive.

Protium is what most people mean they say, "the most common element in the universe" and it is an "isotope" of hydrogen but with a proton missing.

Deuterium is protium with a proton. So that is one proton, one neutron, and one electron. This isotope is found in sea water. Tritium is deuterium with an extra neutron. This one is can be generated by bombarding Lithium 6 (hey look! An isotope!) with neutrons. This will be important later on during the fusion reactor section.

More info: Wikipedia: Isotopes of hydrogen

And finally, the nuclear fusion reactor.

Link: Science - HowStuffWorks: Nuclear fusion reactor

[Freely given to swanne for good keeping! Plus learning new stuff is fun. -TEOT]
edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: formatting, removed sentence that will not be seen later

edit on 9-6-2016 by TEOTWAWKIAIFF because: spelling nazi



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:29 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

If the adiabatic process can be maintained without breaking the first law of thermodynamics with the gas... then this process will function just fine... similar to the heat engine or that drinking bird novelty in concept of functioning under operation... thats basically how that one balloon hydrogen horseless carriage operated a Frenchman whos name I cant recalls vehicle operated... on an inflation deflation cycle with a crank shaped axle and gas regulator for the throttle on the heating and cooling of gas in a closed loop... its assumed it needed fuel but there were no stops in the middle of the trip... or was it a weight gears and bellows ballon cranked te axle gears pumped the bellows that filled the balloon at a heaight through a hose... dang been to long since I reverse engineered that thing looking at it.

Of course, its kinda assinine if we just want power and charging to produce work... theres hub generators that can recharge batteries as they produce electricity on spin.

Of course any industry in direct competition would be oh hell no... but I was going to make an electric bike where the hub generators charged the batteries used to power it using gearing based on an old crank style telephone generator in series with the power hubs to step the output from useage to charge the battery. I dont have a labratory to get all mad sci in but thought form and research and calculations the output was a bit over requirment using the stepped gear generator at about 35mph.

I open source a ton of stuff and hey anyone of course is welcome to get fabulous if they want to fabricate one of these things themselves... I dont want anything for it as 100% open source, just if anyone mass produces... Id hope they donate some percentage of profits to charity.

I suppose it would be helpful to clarify...

One hub generator
One hub motor
Battery for initial off and getting to speed for perfect charge voltages
One old hand crank geared phone generator...

be sure to check output voltages for the hand crank phone generator.

Oh and a custom gear to fit the handle one would have hand cranked for te generator hub tie in.

Of course not to mention bike some brackets and knowing how to do basic wiring will help.

edit on 9-6-2016 by BigBrotherDarkness because: (no reason given)

edit on 9-6-2016 by BigBrotherDarkness because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:43 PM
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originally posted by: swanne
Unless, as Larson suggests, you smash the to-be-fused particles into one another. You don't need heat - the energy of the acceleration does the job instead. So in a way, you could achieve "cold" fusion using a small particle accelerator instead of an impossibly hot furnace.

My main concern with this technology is collision miss (no accelerators is perfect), but the article addresses this issue by electron-cooling the miss particles.
Big accelerators take a lot of energy. Small accelerators maybe less, but then they get less acceleration and I think you need a fair amount for fusion. The vast majority of protons in the LHC experiments don't collide, they miss. So I think you have potentially one of the same problems that you have with Tokomak, you might put more energy in than you get out.

Also I'm not sure accelerated particles are "cold", if there's any validity to this explanation of temperature:

zonalandeducation.com...


The collisions in the LHC can reach trillions of degrees, temperatures hotter than a supernova. They would be less for a smaller accelerator but I don't think it can be called "cold".



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:46 PM
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a reply to: BigBrotherDarkness

They will probably just put all the excess helium into canisters for later processing (cooling back down to liquid gas state takes time and energy but it is already there, so why not use it). There are stray particles that need to be taken out of the plasma reactors (micro stuff from the walls that has been blasted off) that is taken out with "scrapers". So the produced helium would need some processing. Besides, the current method of getting helium is not very clean either. They take helium from gas wells were up to 4% of helium is trapped in the gas mixture down there. I would bet that helium prices will go up should a reactor come on-line (at least in the short term). Know what is strange? That is the second time today I have seen the term, "adiabatic"!

Hey, that is a good idea! Thanks BBD! I have something else to keep an eye on to try and sus out what is up with fusion! Remember when the US said it did not want to keep its helium reserves anymore because it cost too much money? Maybe they didn't need it anymore because a certain government contractor got their T-4 device up and running? Hmmmm... The outcry from hospitals (MRI) and manufacturing made the US spend money on keeping their helium reserves around.



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:50 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

I can't add but I am reading, you and BigBrotherDarkness have such intellect! I am learning from this great thread. Thank you.
edit on 6 9 2016 by Quantum12 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 06:56 PM
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a reply to: Quantum12

The day I joined I threw up a link to the W7-X newsletter (they created their first hydrogen plasma)! I think it was my first post!


Every since I read about the Lockheed Martin breakthrough in fusion (full on lurker mode) back in 2014 I started teaching myself about nuclear fusion. This is truly the future of power generation. I like sharing what I have learned. I jokingly call it "my fusion fanboy" because when that gets kicked in, watch out! TEOT on the loose! (Hehe)



posted on Jun, 9 2016 @ 07:22 PM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Hmm well Im assuming the scrapers are required for the oxidation? This is why I mentioned the depolarizing agent something that acts sort of the way hydrophobics act with water... Im sure theres some material that is no reactive in the particle changes that would take place in whatever chamber... of course even in a vaccum as someone so kindly pointed out several months ago, the vaccum isnt empty but the ratio of particle avg is accounted for then deleted out of the equation for interactional accuracy.

Of course there are some subatomic transient particles that go through everything... so factoring those things in would have to definitely be a given just incase they could force some interation of an unexpected nature, like neutrinos... of course tobacco has an interesting property of removing radiation out of soil so theres probably some way to incorporate a molecular recomibination for it too act as shielding or an absorbing agent... or at least find what properties that it has and mimic them against any radioactivity that may occur.

In other words my smokes dont come from New Mexico.



posted on Jun, 10 2016 @ 06:44 AM
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originally posted by: Arbitrageur
Big accelerators take a lot of energy. Small accelerators maybe less, but then they get less acceleration and I think you need a fair amount for fusion.

You have a point there. Add to that that electromagnets (like those used in the tech described in the OP) only transform about 10% of electricity into an actual magnetic field, the rest is resisted and transformed into useless heat.

But to be fair, the heat of the fusion event could provide at least a part of the energy required to power the magnet, especially if some kind of thermopile is used to directly convert heat to electricity


The vast majority of protons in the LHC experiments don't collide, they miss. [So I think you have potentially one of the same problems that you have with Tokomak, you might put more energy in than you get out.

True for a Tokomak; except the tech in the OP is not a tokomak. Notice that the two reactants are contained inside their own loops - a looping tube contains tritium on the right, and another tube loop contains deuterium on the left.



The two tubes are only put in contact where the fusion must occur. I am inclined to think that miss particles won't go wasted - they'll simply return in the loop and make another round. The miss particles are given multiple chances to collide.


Also I'm not sure accelerated particles are "cold", if there's any validity to this explanation of temperature:

zonalandeducation.com...


The collisions in the LHC can reach trillions of degrees, temperatures hotter than a supernova. They would be less for a smaller accelerator but I don't think it can be called "cold".

Hehe, you misunderstood (sorry, my bad!) By "cold" I meant not the beam or the collision event, but actually the fact that fusion could be achieved without you having to physically heat up particles so to induce thermonuclear fusion.


edit on 10-6-2016 by swanne because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 10 2016 @ 07:05 AM
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originally posted by: TEOTWAWKIAIFF
a reply to: swanne

The neutron bouncing off the reactor walls, over time, and sheer number, will cause the walls to become radioactive over time. But that half-life is short lived, 50 years. By 100 years the entire reactor can be recycled with no harmful radiation.

Yes, but is that slight radioactivity really a problem? We are talking neutronic radiation, not ionising radiation. The worst thing it can do is make the wall's atoms change to a heavier isotope, but the proton count and the electron count stays unaffected. The conductivity of any neutron-irradiated material would stay unaffected, the material just becomes heavier - unless of course your wall is made with insanely heavy materials, which would be irrational anyway.



posted on Jun, 10 2016 @ 07:27 AM
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a reply to: swanne

The process described is fairly hard to do, the thing with accelerators is that high flux requires quite specilized, expensive and power hungry equipment. everyone always looks at the LHC because it is quite high energy, however it is not ultimately extremely high power.

If we look at high power proton accelerators around the world, you will see the limit thus far is probably around 1-2MW, so this is 1-2MW of proton collisions with a fixed target, thats not power consumption. (That number is a rough extrapolation from my PhD, where the accelerator to be used on T2K was spec for 1 MW, and then it was de-rated for 0.7 because the magnets could not handle bending such luminous proton bunches.




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