Lorenzo von Matterhorn
- Jan 31, 2009
- Reaction score
Many controlled fusion devices have been demonstrated. None are power positive yet. One type, the fusor, is shockingly simple; you can build one in your garage. That one is very far from power positive.There is still the major drawback that no controlled fusion device has yet to be demonstrated.
That is a nice reference. I heard about this about 20 years ago. It is often referred to sd inertial electrostatic confinement. Scientific American mentioned inertial electrostatic confinement in an article 50 years ago, but just in passing and I didn't pay attention to it. About 5 years ago Popular Science had an article on a rash of new approaches to controlled thermonuclear fusion. Soon after Scientific American did a similar article. However, since then, there has been no outstanding news about the new approaches. As you may know there is a huge ITER being built in France by a consortium of nations, which should demonstrate something close to the break-even point in power production to come on line in a few years, but it will not be a practical device.
This is really a nice time line. I remember reading about Kantrovitz & Jacobs making their experiment (so called Diffusion Inhibitor) in the Langley Aeronautical lab in 1938. In 1938!! Eventually, they got caught by one of their superiors and he shut the project down (not exactly an aeronautical project). They tried to detect x-rays, but found none. Eventually, people would release that the plasma confinement in their magnetic containment was not good enough for fusion. It is interesting to read about their ideas, a lot of which are still valid today.Here's a rough timeline of fusion research.
I remember reading about the ITER in the 90's. It blows my mind that assmbly only started last year. It would be interesting to compare the project with the international space station and understand why such an apparent difference in progress.
Yup. I remember reading that when I was an undergrad. I finished my BS in 1979."We're about ten years away" is a common refrain...
I always imagined that their media releases might be for the same spy game as many of their products. In any case: