Unlimited Power here we come

We are now a step closer to unlimited fusion power, just like our sun.

This is not to be confused with fission like in a nuclear bomb/power plant that splits atoms to get energy, fusion is the fusing of particles and harnessing the leftover energy.

Scientists from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have created a net gain of energy from firing lasers into hydrogen isotopes no bigger than a head of a needle. They did not produce ignition which would be needed for any future power plant but this discovery is a huge leap forward in a field that many thought was unreachable with current technology.

Researchers have faced daunting scientific and engineering challenges in trying to develop nuclear fusion. “Really, for the first time anywhere, we’ve got more energy out of this fuel than was put into the fuel. And that’s quite unique,” Mr Hurricane said. “That’s kind of a major turning point, in a lot of our minds.

Fusion Reactor
Fusion Reactor

Unlike fossil fuels or the fission process in nuclear power plants, fusion offers the prospect of abundant energy without pollution, radioactive waste or greenhouse gases. Experts believe it will still be many years or decades before fusion can become a practical energy source. “I wish I could put a date on it,” Mr Hurricane said.

The experiments created conditions up to three times the density of the sun. The fusion-energy yield was increased about tenfold from past experiments, in a series that started last May. One of the experiments produced more than half of the so-called Lawson criteria needed to reach ignition, but only about one-one hundredth of the energy needed for ignition.

Stay Curious – C.Costigan

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