Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Point out news stories, on the net or in mainstream media, related to polywell fusion.

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Maui
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Maui » Fri Jul 20, 2018 4:13 pm

I was disappointed by target for late 2020s for a commercial demo reactor. Wasn’t it mid 2020s just recently?

Skipjack
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Skipjack » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:37 pm

I think that was for break even. And yes, it seems like their timeline moved to the right a few years.

mvanwink5
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:56 pm

Norman is supposed to show that they can reach temperature, the next scaled up revision to determine engineering specs, then they build a demo.
A demo late 2020's is huge.

There is enough fossil to not fret.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Skipjack » Fri Jul 20, 2018 7:07 pm

mvanwink5 wrote:Norman is supposed to show that they can reach temperature, the next scaled up revision to determine engineering specs, then they build a demo.
A demo late 2020's is huge.

There is enough fossil to not fret.

The next reactor, Copernicus will reach break even or higher. Demo will include energy conversion and other things that don't make sense to worry about until you can demonstrate that the whole thing is viable.
I think that Helion will beat everyone to the punch though. Their full scale reactor is scheduled to be ready by the end of the year. We could see them reach break even before the end of 2019. I don't think anyone else is that close. After that, it will be a race between TE, TAE and a few other contenders for second place. In any case, once one of them reaches break even, investors will line up for all of them and then development will accelerate massively. I think we will also see a strong support industry forming. Things like switches and pulsed power supplies, etc, which to my understanding are not always that easy to get off the shelf.

mvanwink5
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 7:36 pm

2019! SJ, I hope you are right. ITER will dry up immediately and funding will flow to the others (IMO). There may still be hope for Polywell. So many things will take place with such success announcement.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Skipjack » Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:24 pm

mvanwink5 wrote:2019! SJ, I hope you are right. ITER will dry up immediately and funding will flow to the others (IMO). There may still be hope for Polywell. So many things will take place with such success announcement.

I don't think that ITER will dry up. Rather, I think that more private investors will jump on the (many) commercial fusion startups. I just hope that we won't see too many "bubble" - startups pop up that should never have gotten funding (like we saw during the whole .com bubble era).

mvanwink5
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:09 pm

ITER has many contracts funded by tax dollars, yet the size of a plant will be so huge that no utility will build it. Once a reasonable sized fusion reactor is proven, what will be the need to continue funding it?

Investors don't throw money at projects with the time horizon these fusion reactors take to develop, so have no fear of a bubble.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

RERT
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby RERT » Sat Jul 21, 2018 10:00 am

If someone succeeds with 'aneutronic' direct conversion power, then much of the work at ITER on how to deal with massive neutron fluxes, get thermal power out if the reactor, and handling tritium is surely largely moot. They would be solving really tough problems which don't need solutions any more.

mvanwink5
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby mvanwink5 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 10:54 am

There are massive magnets and power requirements to run them that would also be useless. A huge mothball effort.

A great monument to Gruberment idiocy and bloat.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Crawdaddy
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Crawdaddy » Sat Jul 21, 2018 6:40 pm

I once asked the CEO of General Fusion if he was angry at all the waste of funding and effort associated with ITER. He laughed and said: "In terms of the 3 trillion dollar global energy market ITER is an insignificant rounding error." That should either fill us with hope for the amount of resources that will be deployed once aneutronic fusion is demonstrated, or make you depressed when you realize how little effort is being made to implement practical fusion right now.

Skipjack
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Skipjack » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:43 am

It is not quite that simple. ITER is not just about building the plant in France. The ITER project has employed dozens of research labs all around the world and that research has contributed a lot to our understanding of plasma physics. The simulation software alone has helped a lot of private fusion startups.
What will be interesting is the effect that reactors built by companies like Tokamak Energy and Commonwealth Fusion Systems will have IF they are successful. They are Tokamaks too and they are much more compact and may achieve break even before ITER does.
IMHO, the ITER reactor in France may never become the template for a reactor that produces electricity, but it is not useless. The money spent on ITER is not a whole lot if you look at the big picture. I would still keep the project going, though maybe make some changes to scope and focus.

Also worth noting that even fusion reactors using "aneutronic" fuels like D+He3 will be subject to a flux of neutrons. I cant quite remember the exact number, but at least 5% of the energy released in Helion's Fusion Engine will be in the form of neutrons. That is because they will be "burning" D+D as well in order to produce Helium3. So they will still benefit from material research done at ITER.

RERT
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby RERT » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:44 pm

That's why I put 'aneutronic' in quotes. 11B+11B is said to lead to an average of one neutron over many cases. There is also p+11B->11C+n, 12C+gamma, and alpha + 11B -> 14N+n or 14C+p. It generally looks like thrifting the 11B in the fuel mix will make for a cleaner burn, as long as you can get the thing lit. I think you would also choose isotopically pure 11B and 1H if you could, though you will still get triton and deuteron production from alpha+11B -> 13C+d and 12C+t.

Munchausen
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Munchausen » Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:50 pm


Skipjack
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Re: Small Tri Alpha news blurp

Postby Skipjack » Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:52 pm

While our current #plasma generator Norman undergoes construction to double the power of its #accelerator #beams, TAE is already siting for the next machine, Copernicus - expected to achieve net energy gain in the early-2020s. More by @b0yle for @geekwire: http://ow.ly/rlxV30lkd79

https://twitter.com/TAE/status/1027254970905554945
Sounds like a confirmation that they expect net energy gain by the early 2020ies.


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