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The current, which created pressures in materials millions of times greater than normal, was part of an experiment to better understand nuclear weapons.
During the few millionths of a second that it operated, the 590-tonne Atlas pulsed-power generator discharged nearly 19 million amps of current through an aluminum cylindrical shell about the size of a tuna can, the National Nuclear Security Administration said.
Atlas, which works as a giant power multiplier, was designed as part of a U.S. Energy Department program to determine the readiness of the United States' nuclear stockpile without underground testing.
The Atlas pulsed-power facility was designed as a tool to provide basic physics data suitable for validating the computer codes used for weapon certification and to help scientists improve the models in those codes.
Originally posted by Kamikazi
I have heard something of what they are doing. They are trying to harness the power of a nuclear blast to creat energy, if they could actually do it and get it to work, they would be able to power the entire world from one source in a central location, the best part is that Nuclear energy can self prepetuate itself (never needs refilling or a source other than itself) It would be a constant Nuclear reaction (constant nuclear explosion going off in a contained/controlled enviornment). Imagine the heat alone that it would generate! Imagine the governments pocket book if they got it to work, and how much money foriegn countries would have to pay for it.