It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
(visit the link for the full news article)
The project, known as the “Chip-Scale High Energy Atomic Beams” program, is an effort aimed at working on the core technologies behind a tiny particle accelerator, capable of firing subatomic particles at incredible speeds. It’s part of a larger Darpa plan to reduce all sorts of devices to microchip-scale — including cryogenic coolers , video cameras and multi-purpose sensors. All of the projects are ambitious (this is Darpa, after all). But this had to be the most ambitious of the lot.
No further information is available. A few months ago, a Darpa media contact told Danger Room: “At the point we’re way too early in programmatics to have anything to talk about” — and promised to get in touch as soon as there was anything to discuss. Later, the budget for fiscal year 2010 came out; Chip-Scale High Energy Atomic Beams are gone. Where did the project go? No one at the agency seems to know. “I’m afraid that if the program’s not in the budget request then we’re not pursuing it anymore and are therefore not tracking that activity any longer — we also don’t keep any information on things we’re doing,” a Darpa rep told me.
“I’m afraid that if the program’s not in the budget request then we’re not pursuing it anymore and are therefore not tracking that activity any longer — we also don’t keep any information on things we’re doing,”
NOTE: there does not seem to be follow up funding in 2010. However, the 2009 funded work is probably not finished yet. It is not clear what is the result of the work.
The 50 page PDF of DARPA spending plans has some other interesting projects in the 2009 budget and the 471 page pdf 2010 budget.
The Low Power Micro Cryogenic Coolers program will attain superior performance in micro-scale devices (e.g. Low Noise Amplifier (LNA’s) IR detectors, RF front-ends, superconducting circuits) by cooling selected portions to cryogenic temperatures. The key approach in this program that should allow orders of magnitude power savings is to selectively cool only the needed volume/device via MEMS-enabled isolation technologies. Such an approach will benefit a large number of applications where performance is determined predominately by only a few devices in a system, e.g., communications where the front-end filter and LNA often set the noise figure; and sensors, where the transducer and input transistor in the sense amplifier often set the resolution. MEMS technology will also be instrumental for achieving micro-scale mechanical pumps, valves, heat exchangers, and compressors, all needed to realize a complete cryogenic refrigeration system on a chip. Transition of this technology is anticipated through industry, who will incorporate elements of the technology in current and future weapon system designs.
(U) Program Plans:
FY 2007 Accomplishments:
− Demonstrated thermal isolation of >10,000 kilowatt (K/W) in a silicon micromachining process.
− Demonstrated on-chip cooling to 77 kelvin (K) using a photonic fiber heat exchanger.
− Demonstrated new localized on-chip cooler approaches using integrated thermoelectric coolers and photonic heat exchangers.
FY 2008 Plans:
− Demonstrate micro-scale coolers capable of providing the needed cryogenic temperature while still fitting into a miniature size, with
sufficient efficiency for low power operation.
− Demonstrate heat exchangers, Joule-Thompson plugs, valves, pumps, all needed for cryo-cooler implementation.
FY 2009 Plans:
− Integrate micro cooler components together with sufficiently isolated devices to-be-cooled to yield a single chip system consuming very little power.
If Pentagon whiz kid researchers at DARPA have anything to do with it, handheld fusion reactors could be more than just the stuff of science fiction. Controlling a fusion reaction, the same energy source that powers the sun, is a longtime dream of ambitious scientists. Fusion holds the key to nearly limitless energy.
Someone at DARPA must think a handheld fusion device is possible, because DARPA indicates that its Chip-Scale High Energy Atomic Beams could lead to "handheld power sources." Only problem is, the project doesn't appear in the 2010 budget, but that doesn't necessarily mean the researchers have given up on the idea.
There's little info about this mind-blowing project, but it certainly changes our assumptions about nuclear fusion. We were thinking you'd need a gigantic facility, lots of high-powered lasers, and zillions of dollars to control a fusion reaction. To hold this sort of thing in your hand? The fact that scientists are even talking about this possibility, and pursuing it with multimillion-dollar budgets, is astonishing.
Originally posted by Now_Then
Thats cloud coo co land my friend.
The Pentagon’s premiere research shop is working to shrink all kinds of devices — from cryogenic coolers to vacuum pumps to radar to infra-red video cameras — down to the size of a chip. If it works, it could mean whole new classes of weapons and sensors for the American military — and new gadgets for the rest of us.
In yesterday’s Guardian, I described some of Darpa’s remarkable programs to reduce all sorts of devices to microchip scale. The idea is to produce, eventually, a new generation of "matchbook-size, highly integrated device and micro system architectures" including "low-power, small-volume, lightweight, microsensors, microrobots and microcommunication systems."
For the last several years, research circles have been buzzing, with talk of "lab-on-a-chip" sensors. These small devices used to detect and identify bacteria, viruses and other items of interest; as the name suggests, they are constructed on a micro-scale, so they can work with tiny amounts of material and (because distances and heat capacities are small) produce extremely fast results. Turns out, many of the developments in the itty-bitty lab world can be traced back to Darpa. In fact, one of the agency’s five divisions devoted to nothing but these microtechnologies.
SNIP...“I’m afraid that if the program’s not in the budget request then we’re not pursuing it anymore and are therefore not tracking that activity any longer...
Originally posted by ElectroMagnetic Multivers
Phil schneider was saying they've had 'briefcase' sized nuclear reactors for 20 years at least, in fact, if I remember rightly, he was talking about the mid 70's when he was describing these reactors.
Tiny plasma particle accelerator smashes record
A metre-long plasma-powered particle accelerator can boost electrons energy to the same degree as a conventional machine 3-kilometres-long, experiments show. For all it does, the diminutive accelerator is also relatively simple, consisting of a metal tube filled with gas.
Physicists use accelerators to crash particles together at enormous speeds. The debris from these collisions can reveal exotic particles and new phenomena. But particle accelerators, which normally accelerate particles using empty cavities filled with electromagnetic fields, need to be kilometres-long to attain such speeds. They also cost billions of dollars to build.
Mark Hogan at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center in California, US, is developing an alternative. Together with colleagues at SLAC and at the University of California in Los Angeles, US, Hogan has created a much more compact plasma-powered accelerator.
"Taking the beam from a standard accelerator, we've been able to double the energy [from 42 gigaelectronvolts to 84 GeV]," Hogan says.
Only problem is, the project doesn't appear in the 2010 budget
Originally posted by Lazyninja
And the possible reason it not appearing on the budget might be because it's a black project. Which begs the question, why would we be hearing about it in the news? Well I doubt it would be much of a surprise to the Russians and Chinese to find out that we're trying to make laser guns and free energy.