The race is on, Polywell vs Focus Fusion

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

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cybrbeast
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The race is on, Polywell vs Focus Fusion

Postby cybrbeast » Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:08 am

Mr. Lerner heads the Focus Fusion Society, which is a charitable organization attempting to create focus fusion technology. He believes that his technique is fundamentally superior to Tri-alpha Energy (Colliding beam fusion in the reverse field configuration) and EMC2 fusion (inertial electrostatic confinement/pollywell fusion) because it results in more of the proton-boron fuel being burned. He is confident that this technology could lead to electricity generation at 2 cents per kilowatt hour. We should know if this technology if feasible or not within the next two years.
http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/06/interv ... ville.html

That's on the same time line as Polywell, right?

MSimon
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Re: The race is on, Polywell vs Focus Fusion

Postby MSimon » Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:12 am

cybrbeast wrote:
Mr. Lerner heads the Focus Fusion Society, which is a charitable organization attempting to create focus fusion technology. He believes that his technique is fundamentally superior to Tri-alpha Energy (Colliding beam fusion in the reverse field configuration) and EMC2 fusion (inertial electrostatic confinement/pollywell fusion) because it results in more of the proton-boron fuel being burned. He is confident that this technology could lead to electricity generation at 2 cents per kilowatt hour. We should know if this technology if feasible or not within the next two years.
http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/06/interv ... ville.html

That's on the same time line as Polywell, right?


Yes. And about the same dollar range.

They do have a little problem with electrode erosion.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

TallDave
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Postby TallDave » Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:28 am

Lerner seems more pitchman than scientist. He had an argument with Art Carlson over at Wikipedia that resulted in Lerner being banned from editing.

I put Focus Fusion at about the same level as Blacklight Power. They both have some fairly esoteric ideas about physcis.

The serious contenders appear to be Polywell and FRC. I think there are now two FRC outfits, Paul Allen's TriAlpha team (which I think has Monkhorst and Rostoker) and some new one that popped up recently whose name escapes me (there's a thread on it here somewhere).

nextbigfuture
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Helion Energy is fusion company like Trialpha

Postby nextbigfuture » Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:42 am

Helion are also is working on colliding beam fusion with reverse configuration

kurt9
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Postby kurt9 » Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:24 pm

TallDave wrote:Lerner seems more pitchman than scientist. He had an argument with Art Carlson over at Wikipedia that resulted in Lerner being banned from editing.

I put Focus Fusion at about the same level as Blacklight Power. They both have some fairly esoteric ideas about physcis.

The serious contenders appear to be Polywell and FRC. I think there are now two FRC outfits, Paul Allen's TriAlpha team (which I think has Monkhorst and Rostoker) and some new one that popped up recently whose name escapes me (there's a thread on it here somewhere).


I agree about Eric Lerner and Focus Fusion. I think they have as much chance as Black Light Power. Eric Lerner seems to have a flaky atmosphere around him.

The serious contenders for fusion that I know of are 1) Polywell, 2) Tri-Alpha (CB/FRC), 3) Helion (FRC), and 4) General Fusion. There may be others that I am not aware of.

mrflora
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Postby mrflora » Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:59 pm

IIRC Eric Lerner wrote the book The Big Bang Never Happened, taking the position that galaxy formation is dominated by electromagnetic not gravitational forces.

Regards,
M.R.F.

Torulf2
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Postby Torulf2 » Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:35 pm

There is no”esoteric ideas about physcis” in Lerners ideas about the plasma focus.
They may be wrong but are not contradict any well tested part of the physics. Not at the same level as Blacklight Power how contradict the quantum physics.
The talk about the viral theorem as a stopper for plasmoids to exist is probably wrong. Plasmoid may be stabile for some time if there is a complex topology or strong Hall effect as in the plasma focus or in an atmospheric pressure as in the Electron power systems thoroids or the Plasmak.

The main theory in The Big Bang Never Happened is the ambi plasma theory by Hannes Alfvén. Lerners book pay tribute to Alfvén.
Alfven is on of the founders of the plasma physics. He received the Nobel Prize for the MHD theory.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannes_Alfv%C3%A9n
http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-b ... 9d73311457
http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi- ... ..89..313A

The galaxy formation theory by Alfven was further developed and simulated by Anthony Peratt.
http://www.worldnpa.org/php2/index.php? ... lay&id=646
http://www.ieee.org/organizations/pubs/ ... eratt.html
I think this theory suxx but there is some point to talk about the theory. From a friend made her phd about quasar hosting galaxies said to me that they thought magnetic field is important in galaxy formation but not use it in the models because the equations become to complex.

Alfvén also developed models for planet formation. Large part of this theory now is a part of the standard theory of planet formation. This includes the transfer of momentum from the proto sun to the planetary disc threw the magnet field of the sun.

Alfvén made plasma theories about the universe, the galaxies and the planets. About the planets he seems to be right but not in the other ones. Wrong theory is not necessary crackpot theory. That Alfvén, Peratt and Lerner have done is to take well known plasma phenomenon and bring them up from lab to cosmic scale threw well known scaling laws. Sometime it works, but more often not.

parallel
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Postby parallel » Sat Aug 15, 2009 5:16 pm

This thread reports on some focused fusion work done at DianaHitech’s laboratory. Unfortunately it no longer exists.. “System ready for engineering version.”

http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/08/previous-dense-plasma-focus-research.html

There are more people working on this, and more actual work has been done than I had realized.

djolds1
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Postby djolds1 » Sat Aug 15, 2009 7:12 pm

Torulf2 wrote:The main theory in The Big Bang Never Happened is the ambi plasma theory by Hannes Alfvén. Lerners book pay tribute to Alfvén.
Alfven is on of the founders of the plasma physics. He received the Nobel Prize for the MHD theory.
I found Lerner's contention that there are no such things as singularities in nature to be both interesting and defensible.
Vae Victis

TallDave
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Postby TallDave » Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:27 pm

The plasma focus isn't esoteric physics, but Lerner's other work has been.

Why does this matter? Well, strictly in physical terms, it doesn't, of course. But I would have been a lot more skeptical of Polywell if Bussard had been pushing some kind of alternative physics with conclusions that were a major stretch.

BTW, some of Lerner's assertions in TBBNH have been disproven, such as the background radiation problem.

kurt9
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Postby kurt9 » Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:33 am

parallel wrote:This thread reports on some focused fusion work done at DianaHitech’s laboratory. Unfortunately it no longer exists.. “System ready for engineering version.”

http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/08/previous-dense-plasma-focus-research.html

There are more people working on this, and more actual work has been done than I had realized.


Yeah, this made me think that there may be something to DPF after all.

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:54 am

kurt9 wrote:
parallel wrote:This thread reports on some focused fusion work done at DianaHitech’s laboratory. Unfortunately it no longer exists.. “System ready for engineering version.”

http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/08/previous-dense-plasma-focus-research.html

There are more people working on this, and more actual work has been done than I had realized.


Yeah, this made me think that there may be something to DPF after all.


Once they get the electrode erosion problem in hand all should be peachy. Did you see the after pictures of a 1 MJ set up that had been pulsed quite a bit?

They have to get up to 1,000 MJ per pulse for break even. Which says about 2 to 10 GJ per pulse for useful net energy. That sucker is going to be real exciting in operation.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

chrismb
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Postby chrismb » Sat Aug 22, 2009 1:19 pm

There are no 'issues' of dubiousness about DPF being a 'serious' research contender for fusion. It has been well-researched and 'does' fusion with fine results. The issues are in the efficiency and viability - but that it shares this with most such projects - as per above comments. It is definitely a few stages ahead of Polywell in their respective games.

Just looking at focus fusion's 'news' page presents what appears a genuine opportunity for anyone sufficiently interested and skilled;

"XinPei Lu, LPP’s experimental plasma physicist, has returned to China and will not be able to work with LPP as planned. This has created an immediate opening for an experimental plasma physicist who can start work within one month. Details follow:

Lawrenceville Plasma Physics, Inc., a small research and development company, is seeking an experimental plasma physicist to participate in an exciting experiment in controlled thermonuclear fusion using the plasma focus device. We are initiating a series of experiments aimed at testing the science feasibility of aneutronic pB11 fusion using the plasma focus, and our facility in New Jersey will have a newly built device that will be among the most powerful in the world.
The successful candidate will have solid experience in the use of pulsed power systems and extensive experimental plasma physics expertise. He or she will be familiar with plasma diagnostics, including x-ray and neutron detectors. Enthusiasm for the project and bold imagination are a must. The physicist will work on a small experimental team in a collaborative setting with close cooperation between theoretical and experimental scientists. The position offers a highly competitive salary, full family medical insurance, and stock options. Lawrenceville Plasma Physics, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. Minority, women and are strongly encouraged. The physicist must be able to start work within one month. "

kunkmiester
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Postby kunkmiester » Sat Aug 22, 2009 2:14 pm

ya'know, one of the interesting things about these, is the expertise involved. How many jobs existed ten years ago, that required the level of physics knowledge used in the BFR and Focus and other such devices? Before, about the only place you could really get a job was on the Tokomak projects. I'm sure that there are other uses for plasma and particle physics, but these new projects are expanding the need for deeper knowledge. How soon will these fields, which were previously the sole interest of pure scientific research, reach the point where they become engineering fields?
Evil is evil, no matter how small

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Sat Aug 22, 2009 5:09 pm

chrismb wrote:There are no 'issues' of dubiousness about DPF being a 'serious' research contender for fusion. It has been well-researched and 'does' fusion with fine results. The issues are in the efficiency and viability - but that it shares this with most such projects - as per above comments. It is definitely a few stages ahead of Polywell in their respective games.

Just looking at focus fusion's 'news' page presents what appears a genuine opportunity for anyone sufficiently interested and skilled;


chris,

There are literally tens of millions of dollars floating around looking for a viable small fusion experiment that could lead to a working power plant. I have been approached more than once in the last year by folks with various levels of seriousness. Several of them with the capability and expertise of putting a billion or two into ramp up of production if the experimental results are positive.

If the Focus Fusion folks are not getting the support they want I will assume it is because some one sees a fundamental flaw.

I see two. Electrode erosion and the size (in GW) of an economically viable plant burning pBj.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.


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