Princeton FRC work

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

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Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Tue Aug 30, 2016 12:52 am

Prof Samuel Cohen presented the Princeton FRC at the US-Japan Compact Toroid Workshop 2016:
http://www.physics.uci.edu/US-JAPAN-CT2 ... CT2016.pdf
They reported impressive 300 ms pulse lengths at the recent NIAC symposium. They are still quite a way from break even, though, not just in terms of confinement times, but also temperature and density.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:35 pm

PPPL and PSS managed to get NIAC Phase II funding for their PFRC/Direct Fusion Drive.
Looks like they are partnering with the fusion team at the MIT to introduce REBCO HTSCs to their next reactor/DFD prototype.
http://www.psatellite.com/nasa-niac-phase-ii-selected/

They are also going to present a paper at the upcoming Workshop of Interstellar Flight:
http://www.psatellite.com/dfd-paper-acc ... ar-flight/

I quite like their concept and I am glad to see them getting some attention.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Tue Sep 19, 2017 1:32 am

They have a new paper online. It will go behind a paywall within a month, so get it now, if you are interested:
http://www.psatellite.com/aiaa-space-fo ... n-is-live/

ladajo
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby ladajo » Tue Sep 19, 2017 12:36 pm

Cool, thanks for sharing.
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)

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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby JoeStrout » Sun Sep 24, 2017 1:39 am

I just read the paper. That's really interesting.

But, as a noob to it, here's what I don't understand: they seem to have a design for a small (a few meters) reactor that will produce 1 to 10 MW of net power with relatively low nutrino radiation. And they're tinkering with how to use it to send things to Pluto. I would think that using it to revolutionize the power economy of Earth would be a higher priority. What am I missing?
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mvanwink5
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby mvanwink5 » Sun Sep 24, 2017 2:29 am

What am I missing?

Tri Alpha Energy, Helion? Both of which have robust programs and have made considerable progress. TAE has their latest prototype in testing, results of which will if successful will lead to a near term proof of commercial device, and at this point the chance of it not being successful is low (prior risk management prototypes and experiments were done to lower the risk prior because of the large dollars involved in this latest scaled up version).

I expect TAE will know by years end. We might then know by early 2018.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:36 pm

JoeStrout wrote:I just read the paper. That's really interesting.

But, as a noob to it, here's what I don't understand: they seem to have a design for a small (a few meters) reactor that will produce 1 to 10 MW of net power with relatively low nutrino radiation. And they're tinkering with how to use it to send things to Pluto. I would think that using it to revolutionize the power economy of Earth would be a higher priority. What am I missing?

Because it is really hard to get funding for not torus shaped fusion devices in the US. NIAC and ARPA-E have been the exception. NIAC does not fund fusion reactors for energy. So in order to get funding from NASA, they are making this proposal.
MSNW LLC (the research company that Helion spun off from) did a similar thing with their fusion driven rocket.
Plus, in contrast to Helion, they can not breed their own helium3. That is not such a big problem for a space drive, but for commercial terrestrial reactors, they have yet to develop an economic solution. Sam and Stephanie seem to think that once they have their reactor working, mining the moon, or developing specialized devices for Helium3 breeding is going to happen on its own. They don't really worry about it much, but all that will take time, which makes the space drive the more near term application.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:41 pm

mvanwink5 wrote:Tri Alpha Energy, Helion? Both of which have robust programs and have made considerable progress. TAE has their latest prototype in testing, results of which will if successful will lead to a near term proof of commercial device, and at this point the chance of it not being successful is low (prior risk management prototypes and experiments were done to lower the risk prior because of the large dollars involved in this latest scaled up version).

I expect TAE will know by years end. We might then know by early 2018.

Both TAE and Helion use FRCs but their reactors concepts are very different, otherwise. Still, the fact that PPPL has been able to stabilize the plasma for hundreds of milliseconds increases the confidence level for both Helions and TAEs devices by quite a bit. A few years ago, people were skeptical that FRCs could be made to be stable for more than 2 to 3 ms and now we see 12 ms at TAE and hundreds of ms at PPPL and in PPPLs case in an extremely small device.

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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby paperburn1 » Mon Sep 25, 2017 7:19 am

JoeStrout wrote:But, as a noob to it, here's what I don't understand: they seem to have a design for a small (a few meters) reactor that will produce 1 to 10 MW of net power with relatively low nutrino radiation. And they're tinkering with how to use it to send things to Pluto. I would think that using it to revolutionize the power economy of Earth would be a higher priority. What am I missing?

The other big piece to the puzzle is that commercial power is set up for big power distributed to local nodes. It would cost quite a few ducats to change over to a distributed power system.
That is one of the reasons I had high hopes for polywell is because it could plug into the national grid system very easily and looked to me to have enough variance in power to compensate for the "duck back" problem of inserting renewables into the national grid system. It would have been a Win-Win for power generation and renewability. The good doctor was right when he said that it would revolutionize power generation; Now the world may never know.......
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

ladajo
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby ladajo » Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:21 pm

The world is going to know, one way or another. Don't fret yee of little patience.
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)

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Mon Sep 25, 2017 3:05 pm

paperburn1 wrote:
JoeStrout wrote:But, as a noob to it, here's what I don't understand: they seem to have a design for a small (a few meters) reactor that will produce 1 to 10 MW of net power with relatively low nutrino radiation. And they're tinkering with how to use it to send things to Pluto. I would think that using it to revolutionize the power economy of Earth would be a higher priority. What am I missing?

The other big piece to the puzzle is that commercial power is set up for big power distributed to local nodes. It would cost quite a few ducats to change over to a distributed power system.
That is one of the reasons I had high hopes for polywell is because it could plug into the national grid system very easily and looked to me to have enough variance in power to compensate for the "duck back" problem of inserting renewables into the national grid system. It would have been a Win-Win for power generation and renewability. The good doctor was right when he said that it would revolutionize power generation; Now the world may never know.......

For the PPPL reactor, you could just cluster a few together to make a larger power plant but I think that it you are overestimating the problem of distributing power plants of relatively small size. We already do that a lot. There are plenty of small low MW power plants on the grid in Austria and many larger factories have their own power plants too. The issue with renewables is that the power often is not made where it is consumed and rooftop solar is even worse because it is made in residential areas, where the grid is not meant for this sort of thing. You would not put a fusion power plant into a residential area.

mvanwink5
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby mvanwink5 » Mon Sep 25, 2017 4:26 pm

Sorry SK., You miss the issue with renewables. Their issue is that their output power swings uncontrollably by huge amounts, hence it is unreliable. And fusion does not have issue.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:48 am

mvanwink5 wrote:Sorry SK., You miss the issue with renewables. Their issue is that their output power swings uncontrollably by huge amounts, hence it is unreliable. And fusion does not have issue.

I was replying to paperburn, who was concerned about the relatively low output of the PPPL reactor.

paperburn1
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby paperburn1 » Tue Sep 26, 2017 3:34 am

OH don't get me wrong, I think distributed power is a fine and great idea. I just think the big five will not allow it because the change in infrastructure would be to costly. The day of the electric coop has long passed in the USA and clustering dos not fit in the power generation ideology of the current business model. I can see a day when small towns and large city have there own PPPL plant or polywell to run essential services , just not in the near future. Austria has a great model but I can see great resistance to change here in the good old usa. the main reason being cost per KW wholesale is 3-4 times higher in Austria making local generation a better deal.
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

Skipjack
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Re: Princeton FRC work

Postby Skipjack » Tue Sep 26, 2017 4:09 pm

paperburn1 wrote:OH don't get me wrong, I think distributed power is a fine and great idea. I just think the big five will not allow it because the change in infrastructure would be to costly. The day of the electric coop has long passed in the USA and clustering dos not fit in the power generation ideology of the current business model. I can see a day when small towns and large city have there own PPPL plant or polywell to run essential services , just not in the near future. Austria has a great model but I can see great resistance to change here in the good old usa. the main reason being cost per KW wholesale is 3-4 times higher in Austria making local generation a better deal.

They could always cluster multiple reactors to plug them in instead of coal or other power plants. I also think that small fusion power plants could be combined with currently existing "renewable" power plant infrastructure to take over whenever the conditions are not suitable for these plants to produce power.


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