Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Nuclear Fusion Reaction using a Laser Beam

U.S. scientists produce a laser beam shot with the energy level never achieved before this and become a key step toward nuclear fusion reactions, so the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration. For the first time in history, scientists are targeting one Megajoule of energy by shooting a laser beam 192 at the same time at a temperature of 111 million Celsius or 200 million Fahrenheit, so that agency in a statement.

"Making Megajoule energy makes us one step closer to burning fusion (combining nuclei reaction)," said the U.S. nuclear agency administrator, Thomas D'Agostino. "This historic milestones is an example of how our nation's national investment to produce benefit in various fields, from technological advances in the field of energy, up to a better understanding of the universe."

Nuclear fusion is a form of energy that moves the sun and the stars and into alternative energy that is potentially a clean and limitless energy to replace fossil reserves are diminished, but the conditions that must be controlled production have led scientists to examine it away. U.S. atomic agency says that in an effort to show a fusion reaction, the scientists focused on this laser into a pencil eraser-sized cylinder containing a small target containing fuel consisting of deuterium and tritium, two isotopes of hydrogen.

Laser energy is converted into X-rays, which compress the fuel until it reaches the high temperature and pressure of millions of times greater than Earth's atmospheric pressure, according to the statement. This process causes hydrogen core melt and then release the energy into the early stages to the process of nuclear fusion. In contrast, nuclear fission by splitting atomic nuclei, which requires the separation of atomic nuclei to release energy, remained opposed because of safety concerns and hazardous radioactive waste in the long term.

1 comment:

  1. This is great news for us all, and for our planet. The National Ignition Facility starting its programme of shots to achieve laser fusion is a key step towards solving the energy challenge. Once Lawrence Livermore's team have done this on a "single-shot" basis, we must hope that governments are ready to fund rapid development of this new capability into a working industrial scale capability to produce energy for the grid without burning fossil fuels, without producing CO2 and without making large amounts of long-lived radioactive waste.
    Europe's HiPER Laser Project is preparing right now to do just that, taking up the baton from what seems set to be a huge science achievement.


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