A step towards salvation? Scientists have achieved successful energy production and fusion

For the first time, US scientists have been able to perform nuclear fusion, where more energy is released than was spent on the reaction. This would be a breakthrough on the road to clean and sustainable energy. Citing their sources, the Financial Times and the Washington Post reported that the US Department of Energy will announce the breakthrough on Tuesday.

The US Department of Energy confirmed that it would announce a major scientific breakthrough on Tuesday. However, he did not provide further details. The Financial Times and The Washington Post, citing their sources, reported that scientists at the Lawrence Livermore California National Laboratory were able to perform nuclear fusion, yielding 2.5 megajoules more energy than was needed for the synthesis itself.

If confirmed, this would be the first case of such a nuclear reaction. Scientists are still analysing the results of the experiment.

Nuclear fusion has been described by WP as the ‘Holy Grail’ in the quest to create carbon-free energy. The administration of US President Joe Biden is also betting heavily on this energy source and wants to invest heavily in further research. However, according to media reports, the most optimistic estimates suggest that industrial applications of fusion will be possible within a decade or even decades.

what is nuclear fusion

All light and heat from the sun and other stars comes from fusion. Artificial fusion can be a safe, sustainable and environmentally friendly source of energy. In thermonuclear fusion, lighter atoms such as hydrogen combine at very high temperatures to form the nucleus of heavier elements such as helium. At the same time, enormous amounts of energy are released. This is the opposite of fission, which occurs in modern nuclear power plants.

Fusion experiments are usually carried out in devices called tokamaks, which use a magnetic field to hold the very hot matter-plasma formed in the process.

fusion experiment

As previously written, it is not difficult to hold everything in communications space under normal conditions (experienced DIYers build simple thermonuclear devices at home, thermonuclear However, proving this under the conditions required for large-scale thermonuclear fusion has proved much more difficult. This is not impossible, fusion takes place regularly in physics laboratories, but it is always an irreversible process: we are always in energy production This energy deficit has been steadily declining over the past few decades, but we are still not in deficit.

However, installations at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory operate on a different criterion. It uses a system called inertial confinement.

nuclear fusion

“The idea of controlled release of thermonuclear energy by inertial confinement is based on the same general principle as the hydrogen bomb – the fuel is heated so rapidly that it reaches the ignition conditions of thermonuclear fusion and starts burning before it explodes. The inertia (inertia) of the fuel does not allow it to escape instantly, hence the name ‘inertial confinement’, explains Wikipedia.

In the laboratory, a capsule containing solid fuel is used, which is affected by about 200 laser beams, contracting and turning into plasma. As long as the plasma is maintained at the collision point, the fusion reaction continues.

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