Nuclear Fusion.. what is it?
By Diadon Acs
Have you ever looked up at the sun and wondered, how is that even possible? Well, be careful because looking at the sun can seriously hurt your eyes! This article will be my first attempt to cover what Hydrogen Fusion is and how it is a game changer for clean energy technology. It’s pretty simple, just do what the stars do to create heat and light.
Well, simple in theory but not in practice… .. . not so much.
What do we know about Nuclear Fusion?
The standard definition of fusion is the process of forming two or more things into one. Nuclear Fusion (Atomic Fusion) is simply joining two or more atoms into one atom that is heavier. A tremendous amount of energy is released in this process.
The most common of these fusions being Hydrogen into Helium. This is how we believe the sun and stars operate to radiate there energy through the cosmos. Giving rise to heavier elements that have been forged into the things that make up everything we see on earth.
How the Theory of Fusion formed?
Like most scientific innovations, fusion energy technology didn’t start from one person alone. If there was one person, perhaps it would be the first person to gaze at the stars and imagine what immense power could radiate through such darkness, over vast distances, to reach our eyes.
We will discuss the key players who helped develop fusion energy concepts to where they are today. They are the scientific founding fathers of nuclear physics.
Atomic Physics (Nuclear Physics) was a “hot” scientific topic in the 1930s. This was in part due to a British Astrophysicist named Arthur Eddington publishing his theory in 1926 of the “Internal Constitution of the Stars“. This book laid the foundation of many modern theories in astrophysics. None more important than the formation of the stars through hydrogen fusion.
Eddington’s paper encouraged mathematicians Fritz Houtermans and Robert d’Escourt Atkinson to devise the first calculations of the rate of nuclear fusion in stars.
(Pictured Above: Sir Arthur Eddington)
The Mechanics of Fusion
Nuclear fusion and quantum mechanics became headline news in 1934 with a discovery made by Ernest Rutherford. Rutherford and his student Mark Oliphant found that by firing various forms of hydrogen atoms and measuring the release of energy, they were able to detect helium atoms as well as a large amount of radiation.
(Pictures Above: Ernest Rutherford)
Armed with the theory of Arthur Eddington, the calculations done by Houtermans and Atkinson, and the experiments performed by Rutherford, one of the world’s leading experts Hans Bethe developed a mechanical model called stellar nucleosynthesis.
In 1939, Bethe purposed exactly how atoms could be joined together proton–proton chain reaction. Stellar nucleosynthesis regarding nuclear fusion/fission now had a framework for the scientific community to go by.
(Pictured Above: Hans Bethe)
Nuclear Fusion Reactors
The development of nuclear weaponry put a damper on open discussions of nuclear sciences worldwide. World War 2 brought the knowledge of the destructive power atomic energy can create. This veiled enormous bodies of research in secrecy for some time.
In 1950, two Russian scientists Andrei Sakharov and Igor Tamm developed the first tokamak reactor. Which theoretically uses confined plasma magnetically to fuse together hydrogen atoms. This was a more probable way to generate fusion reactions compared to the earlier purposed Stellarator.
The infamous Farnsworth-Hirsch Fusor is an example of privately funded reactors. Before the Fusor, many fusion reactors were funded by university grants and government money.
While the fusor didn’t become practical for fusion, it did help introduce the concept of inertial electrostatic confinement. The fusor is also an excellent way to produce neutrons which are electrically neutral sub-atomic particles.
Where are we with Fusion Tech?
It is a running scientific joke that Nuclear Fusion is always 20 years away. The reason for this running joke? When a new reactor is developed, often promising to make new strides, it falls short of being able to produce any amount of sustainable reaction.
For over 60 Years now at a cost in the US, in both magnetic and inertial experiments, of $24.1 billion dollars (adjusted to 29.1BN) – Source: FPA.
(Pictured Above JET Fusion Reactor)
The goal for any fusion reactor is in a plasma break-even point. This is essentially a point at which the energy output of the reactor is even to or greater than the energy input of the reactor. This energy is represented by the letter Q an is similar to COP (Co-efficient of Power) in engineering. To this day, no working reactor has achieved this breakeven point.
Despite not achieving a break-even point, there have been many milestones in nuclear fusion reactors. The Tore Supra tokamak in France holds the record for the longest plasma duration time of any tokamak: 6 minutes and 30 seconds. The Japanese JT-60 achieved the highest value of fusion triple product—density, temperature, confinement time—of any device to date.
What is Cold Fusion?
The general definition of “Cold” Nuclear Fusion, is a type of nuclear fusion hypothesized to occur at room temperatures. This particular definition is not the most accurate. The best way to describe “cold” nuclear fusion is fusing atomic nuclei with considerably lower power input than that of its “Hot” nuclear fusion” relatives.
In 1989 Martin Fleischmann (then one of the world’s leading electrochemists) and Stanley Pons reported that their apparatus had produced anomalous heat (“excess heat”) of a magnitude they asserted would defy explanation except in terms of nuclear processes.
“Cold Fusion” is now also referred to as more theoretically accurate names such as LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reactions) LANR ( Lattice Assisted Nuclear Reactions), and CMNS (Condensed Matter Nuclear Science).
While the term “Cold Fusion” has become stigmatic in most scientific circles, there still is a group of underfunded scientists working this technology.
The driving force behind many of these scientific communities is the same as in the essence of true science. Test new theories applying science and engineering via the scientific method. If nature delivers an unknown phenomenon, it’s in sciences best interest to explore it further.
Why does Cold Fusion Matter?
There have been numerous anomalous reports in “Cold” Nuclear Fusion experiments. It is, for this reason, we should be thoroughly investigating these anomalies by the use of the scientific method. This is at the core of science to illuminate unanswered questions in our standard model.
Natural Physics still holds so many mysteries in store for us. A few examples of these mysteries include dark matter, dark energy, gravity, neutrinos having mass, neutron star formation, how heavy elements are formed, and where ultra-high energy particles come from, just to name a few.
Some of these experiments have had positive results ranging from nuclear transmutation, excess heat production, and helium production.
The two best-documented cases being the first at MIT with Mitchell Swartz’s experiments.
Here is part one of YouTube Videos to explain their experiments: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e38Y7HxD_5Y
If you prefer a written form here is a .PDF link for you: http://world.std.com/~mica/Swartz-SurveyJSE2009.pdf
The second being Yasuhiro Iwamura’s transmutation work at Mitsubishi
Here is documentation on the experiments done by Dr.Iwamura: http://newenergytimes.com/v2/conferences/2012/ANS2012W/2012Iwamura-ANS-LENR-Paper.pdf
These are just two of many hundreds of research papers on the subject. This article is merely an introduction to fusion technology. So I don’t want to bombard you with too much documentation all at once.
A Theory to Test…
There is still a huge elephant in the room regarding fusion technology. How does nature sustainably convert hydrogen atoms throughout the universe into concentrated spheres of radiant energy? The prevailing theory is nature forcefully confines extremely hot plasma in gravitational pressures. Yet we don’t have any clue what gravity is … .. .
How are we able to replicate this without a clear understanding? The answer we have come up with is to forcefully use magnetic or electrostatic fields…
This is a question that has been on my mind for almost an entire decade. One in which I believe to have an answer to if the physics of nature agrees experimentally. However, it does shift the scientific paradigm of thinking currently in various fields of physics.
I won’t dive too deep into the theory in this article as it adds no practical value to anyone’s life, and gives no means of testability. It also contributes some suspense to my articles.
The Purpose of the SciTech “Brand” is to spread awareness of what’s possible so that we may engineer a better future. I will say it is highly likely there are phases of hydrogen that lack understanding. A wonderful example is this article on hydrogen superfluidity:https://www.nature.com/articles/nature02910
The hypothesis I would like to test is, the universe is full of fundamental resonant frequencies according to the instruments being played to describe it in an analogy.
A waveguide or resonant cavity is an appropriate approach to create sustained resonant plasma interactions with a strong emphasis on the electrical nature of the cosmos. Also considering condensed matter physics and fluid dynamics, the universe becomes an impressive display of cosmic field interactions in many magnitudes of energetic order.
What we see could merely be the surface tension of a vast firmament in which we interact equally or oppositely.
Wow… that was a long section….
The Nuclear Fusion Documents
I am slowly and steadily becoming more financially independent from traditional linear sources of income. This means more research and development for exploring new methods of nuclear fusion reactors will follow. In celebrating this progression, I have made a Fusion News section on the SciTech Syndicate website.
Though undergoing monetary roadblocks, experimental safety concerns, and life reflections are little more than excuses… you know what they say about excuses…. they are like butt holes, they are all a part of life. This is a long term goal and is my life’s purpose to at least advance the understanding of the stars.
Deciding not to raise any crowdfunding capital yet has been a moral choice. The reason is quite simple, I want a reactor that is 100% achievable and will produce positive results before I ever ask for outside funding. I don’t like to ask for money without something to exchange, hence this crazy geek store was born.
It is also extremely important that all the knowledge remains in the creative commons for any and everyone to use.
SciTech Syndicate‘s Fusion News will be a media platform to share experimental data and resources with a community of interested engineers and scientists. This will also be a compilation of related articles to Nuclear Fusion that have merit and insight. Fellow experimenters from all walks of life who could use more attention will also be featured. I strongly feel that developing an open source community is the key to our species future success.
I appreciate any feedback and support from the community. Sharing these articles greatly helps the cause and if you have any article suggestions I am open to your ideas. I also highly appreciate constructive criticism. Articles such as this will continue to be published. If you see any discrepancies or problems with either logic, grammar, or miss-information, I encourage you to let me know.
For Additional Resources and Knowledge
Check out these websites on Fusion:
You can chat with me and the community directly on Discord
The newest discoveries have always been seen on the edge of the horizon, not in the center of Babylon.
Here’s to our future in the moments of now!