General Fusion in the news

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

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mvanwink5
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by mvanwink5 »

Smells like progress has been made, but not quite there yet.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

ladajo
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by ladajo »

I think it is the part where they say (again) that sims look good, but they have done nothing with a real plasma yet.

Lots of shock wave testing though. Weee! Boom! Weeee!
Do it again! Weee!!!
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

jcoady
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by jcoady »

"Dr. Michel Laberge of General Fusion will give a colloquium at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory on Magnetized Target Fusion work at General Fusion. The event is on December 18, 2014, 12:30pm to 2:00pm.

Hopefully a video of this colloquium will be available afterwards. "

You can watch the presentation live at this link.

https://mediacentral.princeton.edu/id/1_rqmmkznx

Just visit this link at the time of the lecture to watch it live so that you don't have to wait for the video to be posted at a later date.

jcoady
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by jcoady »

Looks like the live talk at PPPL is about to get underway.

https://mediacentral.princeton.edu/id/1_rqmmkznx

mvanwink5
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by mvanwink5 »

Super presentation, good insight into GF progress. Basically, GF has confidence the hydraulic compression without plasma contamination by lead is solvable (using a 200 piston machine) and hydraulic simulation software is quite good. Their 14 piston machine is completely inadequate to demonstrate the smooth hydraulic compression though.

MHD software is not so good, hence testing with explosives. The static spheromak lifetime is good as a result of borrowing from ITER experience with a poloidal current down the center of the spheromak, and GF thinks that they can get 13:1 stable compression with some tricks, but testing it is difficult. However, they are looking into some variations that would be practical for (explosives) testing, and that is where they are now.

Basically, they have made needed progress on all issues up to stable plasma compression and for stable plasma compression, they have one solution but it is not testable (by explosives). However, having one solution indicates that a testable solution (by explosion) may be possible and that is being explored.

So, GF's progress is encouraging, but as we already knew, they aren't there yet (as with Tri-Alpha, Helion, and EMC2).
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

crowberry
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by crowberry »

Thanks for the summary mvanwink5! I could not watch the presentation today, so I have to wait until it appears on the web.
Nice to hear that GF is progressing well. Was any hint given when they plan to build the break even demonstration experiment?

mvanwink5
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by mvanwink5 »

Crowberry,
No hint, but it seems they are waiting to get stable plasma at 10X compression and maybe some investor test neutrons first before asking for the big $.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

crowberry
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by crowberry »

General Fusion has a new blog post where they summarize some major events during 2014. It is worth reading and
here is the link to the blog post:
Fusion’s recent media storm is a teachable moment
It’s been interesting to observe and, to some degree, be involved in the media coverage that accompanied Lockheed Martin’s announcement revealing their Skunk Works Compact Fusion Reactor program.

What a way to close out 2014!
One can get some feeling for keyword searches by using the tool Google Trends. From this plot you can see how much more frequent the Lockheed Martin searches have been on the web compared to Polywell and General Fusion searches: Google Trends comparison of Polywell fusion, General Fusion and Lockheed Martin fusion. It is interesting to see that the average of searches over time is quite similar, but also there Lockheed Martin has surpassed Polywell and General Fusion.

Betruger
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by Betruger »

Like mapping a circulatory system with dye.
You can do anything you want with laws except make Americans obey them. | What I want to do is to look up S. . . . I call him the Schadenfreudean Man.

mvanwink5
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by mvanwink5 »

No news on LM or EMC2's Polywell funding, which is not favorable for either, but for EMC2, which doesn't have ties to some money it could be a disaster, especially since whatever team they had is growing cold. So, despite GF's comment that they share the same problems, they are talking with their mouth full...

Helion, Tri Alpha, are in the prove it or lose it point in year 2015, but there is serious hope for optimism for both. GF seems to be smelling success and is funded to reach that point, but Polywell just can't seem to attract the (relatively) small money to finish proof of concept. RIP moment for Polywell?
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

jcoady
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Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:36 pm

Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by jcoady »

The video of the presentation is now available for viewing.

http://www.pppl.gov/events/colloquium-m ... ral-fusion

crowberry
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by crowberry »

mvanwink5 wrote:No news on LM or EMC2's Polywell funding, which is not favorable for either, but for EMC2, which doesn't have ties to some money it could be a disaster, especially since whatever team they had is growing cold. So, despite GF's comment that they share the same problems, they are talking with their mouth full...

Helion, Tri Alpha, are in the prove it or lose it point in year 2015, but there is serious hope for optimism for both. GF seems to be smelling success and is funded to reach that point, but Polywell just can't seem to attract the (relatively) small money to finish proof of concept. RIP moment for Polywell?
LM has its own funding so they are most likely covered. When they will release more news remains to be seen. You should not forget that EMC2 got last year from the Navy 400 000 + 250 000 + 300 000 USD = 950 000 USD, so if not everything of this sum was spent last year, they will have something for this year depending on how many people they have on the payroll. I agree that they would need the new funding as soon as possible, but collecting money is not easy. The high beta results should eventually be published in a journal and this could help attracting funding.

All the privately funded fusion companies do share problems even if some like GF and TAE are better off concerning funding. All of them are working on solving problems towards reaching a scientific break even demonstration. They have problems in getting enough publicity (with the exception of LM) and they are not necessarily always taken seriously by the mainstream fusion community.

TAE will restart their experiments with the C2U device this year. The seminar at PPPL did not reveal anything that would make 2015 special for them. Helion Energy did attract new funding last year and has a plan on experiments and a new device to build, so I cannot see why 2015 would be a make it or break it year for them. GF has made nice progress in 2014 and they have ideas, confidence and funding to go further, but they still have a lot of work to do in reaching their goals.

crowberry
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by crowberry »

jcoady wrote:The video of the presentation is now available for viewing.

http://www.pppl.gov/events/colloquium-m ... ral-fusion
Thanks jcoady! The work at GF is really impressive and it is good to see that they are doing steady progress.

mvanwink5
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Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by mvanwink5 »

crowberry, making milestones set for 2015 needed to justify additional funds is what is important for Helion and Tri Alpha, and these are critical money milestones. Helion's big money comes after those milestones, Tri Alpha has C2 milestones from their + first quarter 2015 testing which if not made would be trouble. As tricky as fusion historically goes, optimism which seems warranted could fizzle.

EMC2 needs big e-guns to prove WB-8 and as far as I know the Navy's 2014 stay afloat money would not cover them. If I am wrong on that then there is strong hope for EMC2. Otherwise:

What key tests does that money cover if any? And if no key tests are covered, other than gilding the already published results, EMC2 has no new story for the money. And if EMC2 hasn't sold their old story given the expiration dates of a hot race, +1 year at this point lost time, then how will they sell it going forward? That is the point for EMC2's trouble.

Look, GF got the needed money; Helion got their needed money; (Tri Alpha is old project cash backing) EMC2 hasn't, why? The answer, whatever that is, does not seem to have been fixed in a year. Of course, I am not in the loop, so what do I know.

I wonder if the crowded field is EMC2's big problem?

And, yes, GF seems on the verge. Will that shut out EMC2 or help it?
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

crowberry
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Joined: Sun Sep 08, 2013 6:34 am

Re: General Fusion in the news

Post by crowberry »

mvanwink5 wrote:crowberry, making milestones set for 2015 needed to justify additional funds is what is important for Helion and Tri Alpha, and these are critical money milestones. Helion's big money comes after those milestones, Tri Alpha has C2 milestones from their + first quarter 2015 testing which if not made would be trouble. As tricky as fusion historically goes, optimism which seems warranted could fizzle.
Where has Helion Energy and Tri Alpha Energy published these 2015 milestone targets?

EMC2 needs big e-guns to prove WB-8 and as far as I know the Navy's 2014 stay afloat money would not cover them. If I am wrong on that then there is strong hope for EMC2. Otherwise:

What key tests does that money cover if any? And if no key tests are covered, other than gilding the already published results, EMC2 has no new story for the money. And if EMC2 hasn't sold their old story given the expiration dates of a hot race, +1 year at this point lost time, then how will they sell it going forward? That is the point for EMC2's trouble.

Look, GF got the needed money; Helion got their needed money; (Tri Alpha is old project cash backing) EMC2 hasn't, why? The answer, whatever that is, does not seem to have been fixed in a year. Of course, I am not in the loop, so what do I know.

I wonder if the crowded field is EMC2's big problem?

And, yes, GF seems on the verge. Will that shut out EMC2 or help it?
The Navy's 2014 money is not enough for the needed hardware activities, but at least it has bought EMC2 time to get other funding. The EMC2 situation is different from the others because they could not publish while they got the Navy funding. So they have to make their work known and get the results published in journals. It is much better from a funders perspective to work with someone who has results in peer reviewed journals than with someone who has no publications and the rest of the fusion community has never heard of.

The different fusion concepts have their merits and drawbacks. The race is on, but as no one has yet made a breakthrough, then there should be room for all contenders. The limiting factor is probably the number of investors who understand and see the potential of nuclear energy, whether it be fusion or fission and has the required patience for a more long term high risk investment.

If GF or someone else makes big step forward, then it will help the others because fusion will be taken more seriously then and more funders will realize that there is an opportunity in the field. This already happened with the LM announcement, where also the other fusion contenders got more publicity including EMC2.

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