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What do you believe would happen if we perfected a FUSION reactor for energy?

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posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 08:41 PM
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Today, of course, reactors used to produce electricity are fission reactors, in which atoms are split. Fusion reactors, if they become reality, would produce very little radioactivity, and would not be capable of creating the problems we have had with major reactor disasters such as the ones in Japan, Three Mile Island or Russia. Fusion reactors would create much, much greater energy, but of course would require much more energy to fuse atoms than is required to split them. Some believe that fusion reactors could become a reality sooner than originally thought:

www.extremetech.com...


Clean, limitless fusion power could arrive sooner than expected
Good news, denizens of Earth: If the findings from two premier research labs are to be believed, commercial nuclear fusion is feasible — and could arrive sooner than expected.

The first breakthrough comes from Sandia National Laboratories (the same engineers who brought us the fanless heatsink). At SNL, a research team has been working on a new way of creating fusion called magnetized liner inertial fusion (MagLIF). This approach is quite similar to the National Ignition Facility at the LLNL in California, where they fuse deuterium and tritium (hydrogen isotopes) by crushing and heating the fuel with 500 trillion watts of laser power. Instead of lasers, MagLIF uses a massive magnetic pulse (26 million amps), created by Sandia’s Z Machine (a huge X-ray generator), to crush a small cylinder containing the hydrogen fuel. Through various optimizations, the researchers discovered a MagLIF setup that almost breaks even (i.e. it almost produces more thermal energy than the electrical energy required to begin the fusion reaction).

Probably more significant is news from the Joint European Torus (JET), a magnetic confinement fusion facility in the UK. JET is very similar to the ITER nuclear fusion reactor, an international project which is being built in the south of France. Whereas NIF and Sandia create an instantaneous fusion reaction using heat and pressure, ITER and JET confine the fusing plasma for a much longer duration using strong magnetic fields, and are thus more inclined towards the steady production of electricity. JET’s breakthrough was the installation of a new beryllium-lined wall and tungsten floor inside the tokamak — the doughnut-shaped inner vessel that confines 11-million-degrees-Celsius plasma


1.)What do you think would be the effect upon SOCIETY should this happen? I don't wish to debate whether this will happen, but assume it does. What would happen to society, if all of a sudden, oil became obsolete, and all that powers it, were replaced by devices using fusion power?

2.)What effect would this have upon foreign policy, trade, balance of power in the world, poverty, wars, etc.?




posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 08:46 PM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


Personally, I believe it would cause a period of global upheaval, similar to 1989 but far more serious and harmful in the short term. Long term? I think when the dust settled and the world found a way to adjust to the sea change of how people looked at things? It would be a much better world. Getting there will just be hell.



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 08:51 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 

Thanks for chiming in. I won't give my opinions now, but will , when the thread dies a slow death. Your thoughts are very interesting.



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 09:38 PM
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They will find a way to over price it and still rape the common man's pockets. Then oil companies will sabotage the fusion plants and dispose of tge scientist that came up with the idea.



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 09:51 PM
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Originally posted by Jahari
They will find a way to over price it and still rape the common man's pockets. Then oil companies will sabotage the fusion plants and dispose of tge scientist that came up with the idea.


Dumb... real dumb.



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 09:55 PM
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reply to post by MadMax7
 


Pointless...real pointless.

How bout you comment on the topic. That was my comment. Where is yours?



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 10:06 PM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


Cheaper Gas...........



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 11:14 PM
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It's a good thread, OP. Whatever some others think of it.

I'd say it's a good one to let grow a bit overnight and I'll check back in the morning to see how it's turned out. After all, it's a pure theory issue now ....but could well be something we face in our lifetimes. Oh...if we could only be so lucky in the long term sense.



posted on Aug, 15 2013 @ 11:27 PM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


It would all depend on which nation or corporation controlled the technology. If it is a less then generous group or government then you can be assured that many people will die and that if it is possible to profit from it wildly they will find a way to do so.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 06:31 AM
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A fusion reactor would be great. What wold happen to society as a result of it? I think first it depends on the nation that first develops it. If it is the US or another western nation the tech will spread rather quickly across the globe. In many cases will out right be given to less developed countries. Cheap sustainable plentiful energy is one of the big poverty eliminators. The second factor that comes into play is scalability, if the reactor can be scaled to say a size it can work in a car, I can see some people having a really bad day.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 06:46 AM
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If its based on any of the fusion types mentioned it will be infrastructure massive and therefore expensive. As such it'll be adopted by wealthy green conscious nations to generate base load for thier grids. Thats it, no major upheavals in anything.

If you're waiting for revolution you'll be waiting a long time.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 06:56 AM
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Then oil companies will sabotage the fusion plants and dispose of tge scientist that came up with the idea.
reply to post by Jahari
 

I agree that the oil companies will NOT go silently into the night. Money talks, common sense walks.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:01 AM
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If it is a less then generous group or government then you can be assured that many people will die and that if it is possible to profit from it wildly they will find a way to do so.
reply to post by Thorneblood
 

Very true. I firmly believe that the world truly IS controlled by a very small, rich and powerful group of people. Whatever you call them, NWO, Bilderbergers, etc. , they exist, and they will not yield their power willfully.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:03 AM
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Originally posted by ProfEmeritus
I agree that the oil companies will NOT go silently into the night. Money talks, common sense walks.


I don't know about this scenario really. The oil companies are pretty wealthy and most are not above diversifying into other energy sources. The biggest thing about them is they are lazy and have no profit motive to invest in developing fusion power or we would have it already. Once the technology exists they will likely assimilate it fairly quickly. I wouldn't put them in the category of pushing the frontier of scaling it down mind you, but in large capacity generation I see them lining up for a piece of the pie.
edit on 16-8-2013 by KeliOnyx because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:06 AM
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The second factor that comes into play is scalability, if the reactor can be scaled to say a size it can work in a car, I can see some people having a really bad day.
reply to post by KeliOnyx
 

It's early in the morning, and I seem to be dense about your comment. Do you mean that the people would not be able to afford it, because the price would be artificially raised? Sorry I'm so dense, but I'd be very interested in finding out why they would have a very bad day. Thanks.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:11 AM
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reply to post by ProfEmeritus
 


No what i was getting at is how easily the reactors can be scaled down in the future. Like say from a large plant to a small power plant that could power a car. That would be a real problem for the oil companies. Cost will be another factor, but in the long term investing in the infrastructure for it would be considered a no-brainer.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:19 AM
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Originally posted by justwokeup
If its based on any of the fusion types mentioned it will be infrastructure massive and therefore expensive. As such it'll be adopted by wealthy green conscious nations to generate base load for thier grids. Thats it, no major upheavals in anything.

If you're waiting for revolution you'll be waiting a long time.


Agreed. Fusion reactors are likely to be complex and expensive. I doubt they can economically compete with coal, not even talking about "too cheap to meter" fantasies. This is the most likely scenario.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:36 AM
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Cost will be another factor, but in the long term investing in the infrastructure for it would be considered a no-brainer.
reply to post by KeliOnyx
 


I agree. Of course, one of the many factors would be how many new jobs would be created to handle this new technology. Certainly, if the technology were scalable, the auto industry could boom, as the new technology cars would completely replace fossil fuel powered cars. How quickly that would occur could become problematic for people with limited income.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 07:43 AM
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Agreed. Fusion reactors are likely to be complex and expensive. I doubt they can economically compete with coal, not even talking about "too cheap to meter" fantasies. This is the most likely scenario.


One factor to consider, of course, would be whether government heads would mandate conversion to the new technology, and what time frame they would give. I refer people to the mandates imposed by California on fuel emissions. Such restrictions could become very problematic for those with limited financial resources. Then we get into the possibility of tax credits, etc. for those with limited income, and the government involvement creating a big tax burden on those with jobs. Sounds like perhaps we're back in the same mess we're in now. The implications boggle my mind. Then again, new technologies always seem to have push-back from those invested in current technologies. It is amazing how connected technology is to sociology.



posted on Aug, 16 2013 @ 10:07 AM
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Well first of all we need to actually perfect a practical fusion reactor that's capable of producing terawatts of usable energy longterm and reliably, then it will need to produce that energy at a cost per kWh as low or even lower than the cheapest current technology (black coal). The household cost will be the same or higher and the electrons will be the same with the only winner (if there is any) being the environment and even that's not a certainty

As long as we have machines with moving parts there'll be a need for lubricants so oil will never go out of fashion and consider all the uses for crude oil apart from fuel and lubrication

Seems everyone wants more energy for free or at least for much less than it currently costs but the answer is to use less energy which is an extremely unpalatable solution in developed nations. Rising cost is having that effect right now.
edit on 16/8/2013 by Pilgrum because: (no reason given)





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