Fusion is a pipe dream. Wont happen even in the lifetimes of my great grand children or theirs either.
They are still a long ways away from achieving break-even fusion energy output. This article should have mentioned if radioactive tritium was involved in their reactions. Typically, those involved is such research projects have no idea how little time is left. It is unlikely that any of them have seen the following linked articles. UN chief: World has less than 2 years to avoid 'runaway climate change' Climate change could plunge tens of millions of city dwellers into poverty by 2031 A Horrifying New Study Found that the Ocean is on its Way to Suffocating by 2030 World on track to lose two-thirds of wild animals by 2020, major report warns The Threat of Global Warming causing Near-Term Human Extinction Temperature, carbon dioxide and methane
@VincentWolf - Yes . . . and Man will never Fly... @PeakSpecies - Well, but at least they're *trying*... Stable fusion energy would solve a plethora of problems without as great an impact on the climate or the ecology as current means of energy production do. I can tell you that the people who were living near Chernobyl and Fukushima would have welcomed having a fusion reactor rather what they got. The least we can do is to leave the upcoming Peak Species - gigantic radioactive mutant cockroaches - an archaeological record of sound energy science to ease their way into becoming the dominant representatives of Planet Earth. *Go, Gigantic Radioactive Mutant Cockroaches!*
PeakSpecies, I question the integrity of the news/blog websites you posted. The sky has been falling ever since the first newspaper has been published.
I have been following them for a while. Their design is really promising. So far they have been able to increase the input current by a factor of 5 and still maintain stability. From here, they have to triple it to 650 kA in order to reach "break even". For a commercial reactor, they need to double that again to 1250 kA. The great thing about the reactor is that it is really compact, which has aerospace applications.
The 1st controlled manmade fusion reaction occurred in 1958 (that's if you don't include a thermonuclear detonation) and has been reproduced done thousands of times since. The goal after this for a long time was to break-even, rather get energy output to be equal or greater than energy input and that goal was achieved by the United States in 2014. So now the goal is to make fusion affordable and numerous computer simulations are suggesting numerous ways to do this. Include the new breakthroughs in superconductors, lasers, train of thought or different approaches and the massive new infusion of funding because of numerous groups working above the break-even point and it is likely to happen in 5 to 10 years rather than the 20 we have always been told. As for PeakSpecies, you get the red pile and big spoon award of the day! Please, go back to listing what your told by big media and quite commenting on things you know very little about (and the papers you quote are opinionated articles not peer reviewed journals). The reality is we are killing our ocean’s (not with CO2- which is less than 2 tenths of a % of our atmosphere and has very little green house effect when compared to water vaper), through radioactive waste (current big offenders Fukushima and French dumping) and toxic dumping. As for the climate changing, well it does that every year cyclically (spring, summer, fall, and winter) but currently we are starting to feel the effects of 2 longer term weather cycles (grand solar minimum and magnetic pole shift) that will be hitting us over the next 10 to 30 years that will severally affect global weather and likely be the cause of billions to die not just starve. You won’t hear about that in the mainstream media so enjoy that new bite of information.
Fast Eddie
Hmmm....sometimes when we want to believe something, we don't make good decisions. That seems to be the history of fusion research. I vote to continue it, but given that controlled fusion is probably more than another 50 years from practicality, let's start using the fusion power source we already have:
Mark T.
Skipjack4 wrote: "For a commercial reactor, they need to double that again to 1250 kA." I think your numbers are too low, unless this is a much bigger breakthrough that anybody knew, because the Z Machine is already ~20 times more powerful than that. The Z Machine "can now shoot around 26 million amperes (instead of 18 million amperes previously) in 95 nanoseconds" and "Sandia Labs recently proposed a conceptual 1 petawatt LTD Z-pinch power plant, where the electric discharge would reach 70 million amperes."
@PeakSpecies I get you, but with the power of fusion we will be able to produce the massive amounts of bourbon that we will need while we watch the planet expire.
Fusion may still be worth some research. But fail-safe small scale fission reactors that run at low pressures, do not need water cooling, and burn up our present toxic nuclear wastes seem a lot closer and more worthy of larger scale investments. They also do not produce bomb fuels. The technical issue mainly seems to be materials that can hold liquid salt for a long time without corroding. Far from easy. But material science has advanced far in the last few decades.