If hot fusion will allow unlimited essentially free energy to desalinate an infinite supply of fresh water then why won’t the federal government do away with water & utility bills?
How works a fusion reactor and what is the future of using this energy source?
A fusion reactor works by heating and compressing a fuel source, typically a hydrogen isotope such as deuterium or tritium, to the point where the atomic nuclei fuse together to form a heavier element, such as helium. This process releases a large amount of energy in the form of heat and light.
There are several different types of fusion reactions that can be used, but the most common is the deuterium-tritium (DT) reaction, which produces a helium-4 atom, a neutron, and releases 17.6 MeV of energy.
To achieve the necessary temperatures and pressures for fusion to occur, several methods are used such as Magnetic confinement, Inertial confinement, and Stellarator.
Magnetic confinement uses powerful magnetic fields to contain and heat the fuel, typically in the form of plasma. The most commonly used magnetic confinement design is the tokamak.
Inertial confinement uses intense laser beams to heat and compresses a small pellet of fuel.
A stellarator is a more complex and less explored approach than tokamak which uses a combination of magnetic and electric fields to confine and heat the plasma.
Fusion power has the potential to be a clean and abundant source of energy, as the only by-product of the reaction is helium, and there is no risk of a meltdown or release of radioactive material. However, achieving a sustained and controlled fusion reaction has proven to be a significant scientific and engineering challenge. Currently, no commercial fusion power plants exist, but research continues to progress in this area.
The future of using fusion reactors as an energy source is still uncertain, as the technology is still in the research and development phase. However, many experts believe that fusion has the potential to be a clean and abundant source of energy.
Several fusion reactor projects are currently under development worldwide, such as the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) being built in France, the China Fusion Engineering Test Reactor (CFETR) in China, and the private company General Fusion in Canada. These projects aim to demonstrate the feasibility of sustained and controlled fusion reactions and to test and develop the technology for future commercial use.
The biggest challenge facing the development of fusion as an energy source is achieving a sustained and controlled reaction, as well as finding ways to make the technology economically viable.
Despite these challenges, research and development in the field of fusion energy continue to progress, with significant advancements made in recent years in areas such as plasma confinement, materials science, and high-temperature superconductivity.
It’s expected that the first commercial fusion power plants will not be built before the 2050s, but once they are built it is expected that fusion energy will become a major source of power, providing a clean and abundant energy source for future generations.
Hot fusion, also known as nuclear fusion, has the potential to produce large amounts of energy with very little waste, and it could be used to desalinate seawater to produce fresh water. However, there are several reasons why the federal government may not do away with water and utility bills if fusion power becomes a reality:
- Development of fusion power is still in the early stages, and it is not yet clear when, or if, it will be commercially viable.
- Even if fusion power becomes viable, it will still require significant investment in infrastructure to build and maintain the power plants. This cost would need to be covered by the government or private companies, and it will be passed on to the consumers.
- There are also operational costs associated with desalination, such as the cost of maintaining and repairing the desalination equipment, and the cost of transporting the fresh water to where it is needed.
- The government may also have other priorities for the use of fusion power, such as electricity generation and reducing carbon emissions, rather than only focusing on desalination.
- There might be other ways to approach the issue of access to fresh water, such as conservation and water management, rather than relying solely on desalination.
In summary, while fusion power has the potential to produce large amounts of energy, it is not yet clear when, or if, it will be commercially viable and it would still require significant investment in infrastructure and operation costs.
The government may also have other priorities for the use of fusion power, and there might be other ways to approach the issue of access to fresh water.