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New record for fusion

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posted on Mar, 15 2018 @ 02:36 PM
a reply to: punkinworks10

That is what I thought I linked back in December of last year, here.

Now the main site "Laser Focus World" is not responding! They had a grid of nanowires (I don't remember if they were doped with deuterium or not. And now can't go back an check
) that heated the surface to ridiculous temperatures and a high enough density for inducing fusion.

I had to walk through the site by going to "Archives" under "May 2017" and the link I had in my previoius post is Colorado State University. It looks like they swapped their nickle and gold nanowires for deuterium doped ones. They had previously noted an increase in the helium spectrum which clued them in to try the updated wires.

From the previous story, they are shooting the nanowire array with femtosecond bursts. That heats up the surface and shoots off electrons. With the gold wires they also got a magnetic pinch which contained the plasma to high temperatures and high density.

Swap in some heavy hydrogen ions and you get plasma conditions that create neutrons! I.e., nuclear fusion!

I would imagine, since this an array of nanowires, you could add more (2x2, 4x4, 8x8, etc) to see what happens next! Surround it by liquid lithium and heat exchange out energy. At least they know that lasers work!

posted on Mar, 27 2018 @ 04:31 PM
Gasp! There is actually news about Lockheed Martin Skunkworks Compact Fusion Reactor!

The patent, for a portion of the confinement system, or embodiment, is dated Feb. 15, 2018. The Maryland-headquartered defense contractor had filed a provisional claim on April 3, 2013 and a formal application nearly a year later. Our good friend Stephen Trimble, chief of Flightglobal's Americas Bureau, subsequently spotted it and Tweeted out its basic details., March 26, 2018 - Lockheed Martin Now Has a Patent For Its Potentially World Changing Fusion Reactor.

and - Encapsulating Magnetic Fields for Plasma Confinement.

The Aviationweek article is in color but this has more visual detail.

There are two main magnets within the "embodiment" chamber (just call it the "reactor" like everybody else!). Everything lines up down the centerline ("Capt'n, I need to align the reactor's coils!!"). On either side of the two interior coils are two more coils to keep plasma off the reactor's walls. There is an exterior center coil. The plasma either squeezes inwards towards the center or tries to flow along the embodiment wall towards the ends. There, there are another set of magnets set up as a "magnetic mirror" which redirect the plasma down the center line (where the two interior magnets squeeze towards the center). There are two "heat injectors" (neutral beam injectors as originally reported), which heat up the plasma by injecting fast moving fuel and/or radio waves (the patent just says "heat injectors" and there are no other ways to feed the reactor).

I can't believe I figured that out from reading and re-reading everything I could find on CFR!

They also have diagrams of more coils instead of just the two (x2, x4, x6). The outer coils are called, "encapsulating coils" and are of a weaker strength than the internal coils. The 100 MW CFR is 10m x 7m, by design. They say higher output CFRs would be larger (ha! Take that NextBigFuture!). The inner shielding is Lithium-6, with a width of 5 mm; the exterior shielding is FliBe and is 30 cm thick.

They have a block diagram of the computer control system. They seem to be setting this up to be networked (hum? Lockheed is into this whole networking thing, huh?). I would think several CFRs spread over a metropolitan area doing things like load balancing and auto switching creating something known as a "distributed energy grid". Usually, distributed grids also use energy storage and guess who is making that too? Yup, Lockheed.

Still no specifics on what their demo model is doing or what strength their coils are at. Or how this might actually shrink if stronger coils are invented.

But finally! Lockheed's compact fusion reactor is up for review!!!


posted on Apr, 2 2018 @ 03:17 PM

The new experiments amply demonstrated the ability of the five copper trim coils and their sophisticated control system, whose operation is led on-site by PPPL [Princeton Plasma Physics Lab] physicist Samuel Lazerson, to improve the overall performance of the W7-X. “What’s exciting about this is that the trim coils and Sam’s leadership are producing scientific understanding that will help to optimize future stellarators,” said PPPL physicist Hutch Neilson, who oversees the laboratory’s collaboration on the W7-X with the Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics, which built the machine and now hosts the international team investigating the behavior of plasmas confined in its unique magnetic configuration.


Achieving the control required the trim coils to perturb the magnetic field in a way that made clear the size of the error field. Complementary experiments by Lazerson and Max Planck scientist Sergey Bozhenkov then confirmed predictions of the needed power of the trim coils to correct the deviations — an amount that equaled just 10 percent of the full power of the coils. “The fact that we only required 10 percent of the rated capacity of the trim coils is a testament to the precision with which W7-X was constructed,” Lazerson said. “This also means that we have plenty of trim coil capacity to explore divertor overload scenarios in a controlled way., news, March 29, 2018 - PPPL-led research enhances performance of Germany’s new fusion device.

I could have sworn there were more external trim coils, like 10 of them! These coils reside outside the reactor and were thought to be needed to correct any plasma movement should the magnetic confinement scheme need assistance. Well, computer controlled construction of reactor, the same with QA in materials and computer construction of the magnetic coils, then the placement of the 20 segments together via laser sighting, means the W7-X was very well put together! At just 10% magnetic correction needed, I would consider that another win for the W7-X.

This probably should have been part W7-X January news letter but was not. This was over at the PPPL site.

The internal, twisty magnetic coils, are optimized to rotate the plasma and "flip it over" as it were, so when circulating around the stellarator, the plasma on the bottom switches places, then becomes plasma on the top. In a tokomak, they use currents that whip around with the plasma which causes speed differential between the inner plasma and the outer plasma; add in temperature gradients, then you increase the odds of creating plasma turbulence. Then you have to check the turbulence which would mean some kind of heating scheme or magnetic field manipulation. Which is why they added the trim coils to W7-X. I wonder if they even need them!

They have not even gotten to the second stage operation with the goal of 30 second plasma and this device is paying off!

posted on Apr, 10 2018 @ 01:11 PM
Here is a reactor I knew nothing about! First Light Fusion, is in Oxford, England and have already constructed 2 of their machines. They have funding for commissioning their third machine this year.

"The pressures and velocities that we will be able to access with this machine will massively extend the development of our fusion target designs," Nicholas Hawker, Founder and CEO of FLF said.

"We are confident that we will reach our present goal of demonstrating fusion. Beyond that, the experimental platform that we can build with this machine will give us critical insights into the next step, which is to demonstrate gain."

World Nuclear News, March 15, 2018 - UK firm sees year-end launch of pulsed power device.

Pulsed inertial confinement. No wonder I have not really heard of them, "lean, focused, agile" is their description of themselves. Reminds me of the LPPP "deep fusion" guys.

Hope to keep hearing news about them later this year. Pressure and volume would be nice to see in an inertial confinement reactor. Gain would be world wide news.

posted on Apr, 10 2018 @ 01:17 PM

So what would happen to your finger if it touched 35 million degrees?

posted on Apr, 10 2018 @ 01:53 PM
a reply to: nOraKat

It would require a Samuel L Jackson type response!, - The Man Who Stuck His Head Inside a Particle Accelerator.

He didn't die!! That is a crazy story to share! Not the best way to not age...

posted on Apr, 10 2018 @ 07:34 PM

Hey there T,
Look what just popped up as a sponsored ad on my FB feed,
edit on p0000004k35422018Tue, 10 Apr 2018 19:35:19 -0500k by punkinworks10 because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 12 2018 @ 03:11 AM


posted on Apr, 12 2018 @ 12:42 PM
a reply to: punkinworks10

There have been a few stories out there the last week. - Tungsten 'too brittle' for nuclear fusion reactors.

Which is kind of a "Captain Obvious" article. They already know tungsten will not work as a first wall for a fusion reactor. Which is why PPPL made the liquid lithium limiter which protects the reactor wall from embrittlement. And the thing works! They heat lithium to a liquid, squirt it into the reactor, it gets smeared against the wall (if any get in the plasma, no biggie, because it helps smooth that out too), gets hit by neutrons, takes the heat, gives off tritium, keeps the first wall from taking direct hits, and cleans the surface. They take it out, clean it, take the heat out, and recycle it back through.

Your LPPP fusion story made the fanboy at NextBigFuture put up an article. It looks like they also got some patents. They are reaching temperatures where they need to figure out how get the heat out of the anode. The guy also does not like Lockheed so he poopooed the CFR yet again in a couple of articles. He claims the patents do have plans for a reactor power plant so they are bogus at best (implies that they are liars). But the bastid doesn't get that Lockheed is going for a distributed plan of small reactors.

I can't find the article, but it was about several private funded companies writing a letter asking for government funding for "alternative" fusion projects (might have been at nextbigfuture). Up in Canada, General Fusion is still churning along with their device but the articles have been "this is fusion, this heats the sun, gee that is neat" type with no real news., news - Fine-tuning fusion, is about a postdoc going to the DIII tokamak doing theories with the chance to do the experiments as well. It is nice to see news about computer modeling because that usually gets overlooked. MIT is partners with pretty much everyone so that should help other facilities around the world.

Funny how FB targeted you!!

Did you post this on an unsecured network? Uh, how did you get this number?!! I don't know you! Prank call! PRANK CALL!!!

posted on Apr, 12 2018 @ 01:49 PM
Why nuclear fusion matters (or how I learned to stop worrying and love the technology)

There are all the “big” reasons, carbon free energy, nearly limitless fuel supply, energy “too cheap to meter,” and the application of that energy (the argument, “it costs too much electricity to scrub CO2 from the atmosphere and put it to good use,” goes out the window. Which means there are no more excuses to not clean our # up!).

But those are all the big ticket items. I bet you didn’t know that nuclear fusion and high energy plasma research has/is having its effects on the world already even without a nuclear fusion reactor on-line and providing power to the masses.

Source:, April 10, 2018 – Fusion Research Ignites Innovation.

The article details several items that have benefitted from nuclear fusion research and the science behind it.

The semiconductor industry wanted to put materials into chambers filled with plasma and use the resulting chemical reactions to strip off or add atoms. In theory, this process would give them the level of control they needed to make miniscule grooves and lines.

Unfortunately, the companies had unpredictable results when they used radio frequency (RF) waves to create the plasma.

“Mother Nature was not kind. It turns out that there are very complex connections between different frequencies of voltages,” said Mark Kushner, a University of Michigan professor and director of the DOE Plasma Science Center there.

Because testing the RF power levels by hand was too complex and time-consuming, they sought outside expertise.

Fortunately, ORNL [Oak Ridge National Laboratory] scientists had been using RF waves to heat up fuel for fusion for more than a decade.

The government’s here to help you; they can actually help you!” laughed ORNL’s Gary Bell, recalling how manufacturers felt. “We got a big kick out of that.”

Modifying how they produced semiconductors allowed manufacturers to fit more components onto computer chips than ever before. Those improvements and others using plasma made it possible for companies to build smaller, lighter, more efficient cell phones, tablets, and computers.

RF heating is how the plasma is kept hot enough to study instabilities and turbulences on the road to fusion. The eventual goal is that all the energy you use to create, control, and heat up a plasma, will reach a point where you get out more energy than you put it; it is called “break even,” and has not been reached in fusion research. Even so, there is one example (with a great quote from ORNL!) of using government funded research in a lateral application which has a real world impact.

Keeping a hot plasma contained also required new materials. The article continues with how ORNL also made a stainless-steel that can “resist temperatures up to 1560 degrees F,” and new “radiation-tolerant silicon carbide ceramic composites” that are heat tolerant to “2700 degrees F”. The stainless-steel ended up in Caterpillar diesel engines while the ceramic composites are now used in rocket nozzles by NASA (same source).

Based on that expertise and existing technology, DOD chose GA [General Atomics, San Diego, California] to develop the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS). This system speeds an aircraft down the deck of a carrier using a linear induction motor coupled to the same type of inverters that provided such precise electrical and magnetic control at DIII-D [GA’s tokamak fusion reactor]. The performance of the induction motor can be finely controlled to deliver the precise amount of acceleration and velocity necessary to launch an aircraft of a specific size and weight. Because it’s much more precise than previous systems, EMALS minimizes the physical stress put on the aircraft, increasing their lifespans, and reducing costs.

Today, the U.S. Navy is using EMALS on the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). It is also installing EMALS on all future Ford-class aircraft carriers.

The last real-world result from nuclear fusion research are portable nuclear material detectors used by several security companies guarding our ports and rail systems.

All that and not even a real, live, working nuclear fusion reactor that has achieved break even let alone putting power out on the grid!

Pretty cool, huh?

posted on Apr, 23 2018 @ 02:28 PM

An official, unclassified briefing from August 2017 shows that McGuire’s team has crafted at least four iterative experimental reactor designs, as well as an unknown number of subvariants. The most recent test example at that time was known as the T4B.

But the goals for the follow-one T5 and T6 indicate that the previous reactors were not even fully functional. The T5 would provide data on heating and inflating the plasma. Essentially, as the temperature of the plasma goes up, it expands, so it is necessary to test to make the physical limits of the confinement chamber.

The T6 appeared to be the first one Lockheed Martin would subject to a more serious high-temperature experiment. Lockheed Martin would only conduct a true, full-power demonstration with reactor large enough to represent the notional production version with the T7. Further experimental reactors would continue to validate the design on the way to the final, practical TX reactor.

The briefing says that the company now expects to have a workable compact reactor capable of generating a continuous 100 megawatts of power – the goal from the beginning – sometime in the 2020s. This is an at least five-year delay over the original schedule and is far vaguer than the previous developmental timelines., April 20, 2018 - China Touts Fusion Progress As New Details On Lockheed Martin's Reactor Emerge.

The first part of the article is the claims about China's EAST claim of 100 second plasma run and how that was two years ago (and only from state run media), so it might be doubtful that the original claim is even true.

Finally, some news about Lockheed Martin Skunkworks' Compact Fusion Reactor! They actually pieced together a couple of sources, first is a personal contact who assures that funding continues and LM has full commitment on their CFR plans.

The second it a review of the 2014 Aviation Week announcement, then, and where LM stands now using a slide from a 2017 lecture (all below come from that slide, same source). The current iteration CFR is named T4B. They then layout the general development goals of ensuing models but there are no timeline updates.

T5 - A demo of high density plasma, neutral beam injector tests, and metrics on magnetic confinement (finally!)
T6 - High temperature experiment and check of shielding of support stalks
T7 - Deuterium-deuterium (DD) fuel, full power, full CFR size
T8 - D-tritium fuel, alpha particle confinement, (doesn't say, but they have to get the heat out too)
TX - Reactor model, modular design, regulatory licensing

The TX goal is left at "sometime in 2020".

Lockheed is a little under halfway to their desired goal. This also assumes that there are not major design changes or unseen technical issues encountered. Maybe LM could benefit in these delays by having superconducting magnet tech catch up with their design. The patents are for 15T coils and the National Magnetic Lab is making available this year 30T coils, so if they can be used in the CFR design, that would shrink the reactor size even further!

Any news is good news when it comes to LM Skinkworks even if it looks like their original timeline has slipped by 3 - 5 years.

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