Polywell confinement fusion

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posted on Nov, 29 2009 @ 01:57 PM
The polywell is a plasma confinement concept that combines elements of inertial electrostatic confinement and magnetic confinement fusion, intended ultimately to produce fusion power.
The fundamental idea of the polywell device was conceived in 1983. Research was funded by US military and various small-scale prototypes were built. Today, the development of this approach is funded by Navy but its underfunded because of wars and other projects like Tokamak. Following submission of the final WB-7 results in December 2008, Dr Richard Nebel commented that "There's nothing in there [the research] that suggests this will not work..." Dr. Bussard formed EMC2 Fusion Development Corporation, [1] a non-profit organization, to seek funding for serious continuation of the project.


In September 2009, the US Department of Defense announced further funding of $7,855,504 for Energy Matter Conversion Corp for research, analysis, development, and testing in support of the Plan Plasma Fusion (Polywell) Project. Efforts under this Recovery Act award will validate the basic physics of the Plasma Fusion (Polywell) concept, as well as provide the Navy with data for potential applications of polywell fusion. The project is expected to be completed by April 2011.[38]

Under development also is an "Open Source" Polywell MaGrid, to be found at the "Prometheus fusion perfection" weblog. Having demonstrated the feasibility of a Fansworth-Hirsch fusor recently, the next phase of the project is a Polywell, the parts for which have already been fabricated by 3D Rapid Prototyping.


Polywell forum:

Polywell links:

This approach looks more promising to me than throwing money at Tokamak. What tokamak has achieved with billions, pollywell has achieved with millions, and first commercial power plants could be producing power as soon as 2020.
It is also much smaller and lightweight, and could even be used to power naval or space ships.

[edit on 29-11-2009 by Maslo]

posted on Nov, 29 2009 @ 03:00 PM
Great thread. I beleive that soon we will see a whole new source of energy . Some are really trying to move us away from fossil fuels.

posted on Nov, 29 2009 @ 03:59 PM
Another particularly interesting quote from wiki:

With the success of WB-6, Bussard believed that the system had demonstrated itself to the degree that no intermediate-scale models would be needed, and noted, "We are probably the only people on the planet who know how to make a real net power clean fusion system"[8] He proposed to rebuild WB-6 more robustly to verify its performance. After conducting and publishing the results of dozens of repeatable tests, he planned to convene a conference of experts in the field in an attempt to get them behind his design. Assuming his design had been backed, the project would have immediately moved toward a full-scale demo plant. The first step in that plan was to design and build two more small scale designs (WB-7 and WB-8) to determine which full scale polyhedral potential well would be best. He wrote “The only small scale machine work remaining, which can yet give further improvements in performance, is test of one or two WB-6-scale devices but with “square“ or polygonal coils aligned approximately (but slightly offset on the main faces) along the edges of the vertices of the polyhedron. If this is built around a truncated dodecahedron, near-optimum performance is expected; about 3-5 times better than WB-6.” [12] Bussard noted that, "Thus, we have the ability to do away with oil (and other fossil fuels) but it will take 4-6 years and ca. $100-200M to build the full-scale plant and demonstrate it."[8] Bussard said "Somebody will build it; and when it's built, it will work; and when it works people will begin to use it, and it will begin to displace all other forms of energy."[22] There is some evidence of this occurring already, with at least one "Open-Source" project to replicate Dr. Bussard's work already well underway under the project title "Prometheus fusion perfection".

At prometheus fusion they have already achieved fusion and are going to build a complete polywell.. I am curious what the results might be if we spend all the money used on Tokamak on this instead.

posted on Nov, 30 2009 @ 04:02 PM
..not a single new response?

maybe I should post something more metaphysical and less technical.. Something with.. ..hyperdimensional physics!
Yeah, thats always the way to go..

posted on Feb, 5 2011 @ 08:41 AM
Pretty quiet here....

Anybody know anything more. The Navy contract should be on to demonstrating the WB8.1 device and aneutronic reactions using it by now (if they stick to what was in the tender).

If they are making the planned progress its the most important research on the planet.

posted on Mar, 31 2011 @ 01:06 PM
reply to post by justwokeup


I have been following this for years. Here is a more recent link to EMC2.


Huh! I can't believe this topic had so few responses.... Here is a link just to show the Navy is serious...

posted on Apr, 3 2011 @ 04:20 AM
reply to post by Maslo

funding $7,855,504 that is just pathetic considering how much much is wasted elsewhere.

nuclear fission reactors cost $ billions.

cruise missiles/ordnance fired into lybia cost $500 million.

the european tokamak is not designed to produce energy at all.read their own mission statement.the small print.

only to demonstrate plasma confinement for 90 seconds.

at a cost of $12 billion.it will take 20 years. and then anothor 20 years.

a hot plasma tube is impossible to confine as the slightest kink or imperfection and it wriggles out of control ,hitting the walls ,cooling down.

in fact it is impossible to get useful energy out of a tokamak as the magnetic coils must ENCLOSE it and the magnetic field must be PERFECT that there is no ROOM for any heat exchanger coils.

the SLIGHTEST imperfection in the magnetic field and the plasma hits the walls ,cools down and fizzles out.

tokamak is just an expensive employment agency for physicists physicists stuck in their own rut.

posted on Dec, 29 2012 @ 09:49 PM
I watched Dr. Bussard's video "Should Google Go Nuclear? Clean, cheap, nuclear power..." two to three times. I take the man at his word and believe that he did what he claimed.


I agree that the funding is silly small. Factor in the implications of a successfully operating machine (Cost benefit analysis) and you get silly small disease.

"Nuclear fusion reactors cost billions"

Well, you have two separate things going on. You have 1) research into HOW to build them. And 2) the actual cost TO build them. Compare R&D spent by the government (tax payer) on other fields (including gas and oil) and you get a clear case of the silly small funding disease.

Given how so many corporations rely on there NOT being low cost energy, one must view those getting into the game with suspicion. No small group of researchers could operate with such corporate power applying pressure on them to fail. One must realize that those corporations are far from morally above such things. Their history demonstrates their methodology. MAYBE a less influenced nation could give willing scientists enough space and safety to do real research into this field. But I certainly do not pin my hopes on the western governments or institutions.

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