Yet another Polywell website

Discuss ways to make polywell research more widely known or better understood. Includes education and outreach.

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classicpenny
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Yet another Polywell website

Postby classicpenny » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:04 am

I threw out much of my old website at www.polywellnuclearfusion.com and installed a new one at the same address. I guess mostly I was responding to Rich Nebel's comment in Talk-Polywell the other day,"This is not the way one would like to run a program, but you have to play the cards you're dealt.” But partly I was responding to my lack of success, so far, in convincing my Congressman and my Senators that Polywell merits some serious attention;and partly I was responding to my failure to get "clean nuclear fusion" into the "official" local Democratic list of suggested "alternates" to fossil fuels, at my local County convention.

My intent for the new website is this: To secure adequate funding for development of the p-B polywell by convincing decision makers, and those who influence them, that such funding is in the best interest of our entire planet. To convince my skeptical “blue” friends (who listen to ElRushbo in fascinated horror) that “alternative energy” is not sufficient, biofuels are especially bad, and p-B nuclear fusion can be clean and safe. To convince my skeptical “red” friends (who believe that Rush really is right) that -global warming or not- fossil Fuels are bad, biofuels are bad, nuclear fission is not a particularly good alternative, and p-B nuclear fusion can give America energy independence. To convince disbelieving middle and high school students that people really do need science and math to solve important problems. And to convince everyone that there are some issues where universal agreement is possible, and there really can be hope for the future.

drmike
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Postby drmike » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:26 am

I think the first page is great, and while I was staring at the p->B11 diagram I thought "this is fission, not fusion!" That might be a useful marketing tool someday :)

Instead of a neutron splitting a nucleus, you use a proton. You are still splitting, unless you can get gammas out and leave C12. Now I have to go look up life times....

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:50 am

drmike wrote:I think the first page is great, and while I was staring at the p->B11 diagram I thought "this is fission, not fusion!" That might be a useful marketing tool someday :)

Instead of a neutron splitting a nucleus, you use a proton. You are still splitting, unless you can get gammas out and leave C12. Now I have to go look up life times....


With about 2.5 MeV released per alpha the lifetimes are not going to be long.

My guess would be microseconds or less.
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MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:54 am

CP,

I have added you to the top of the blog list (just under Lubos Motl) at:

http://iecfusiontech.blogspot.com/

Simon
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Keegan
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Postby Keegan » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:21 pm

Hey classicpenny all the best in spreading the good word.

That p+B11 diagram you have drives me nuts :roll: I captured the same image from the 2006 IAC paper and i have it on my Ipod touch to back me up when i talk to people about fusion. Its a pretty simple reaction where a Proton and a Boron give you 3 Heliums.

Image
People always seemed to get confused when i showed them that picture.

I never really understood untill i looked at it myself and realised that it is confusing !

Too much information for the common joe.

I found this animation which is exponentially more effective as a learning aid

Image

I tell people the polywell story, show people that animation on my ipod, Quote E-MC2 and always get the point across.

Too bad none of them have had venture capital..... yet .... 8)
Last edited by Keegan on Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Tue Apr 22, 2008 2:09 pm

Keegan,

Nice animation.


I got a venture capital offer on one of my blogs yesterday. It is about the 3rd or 4th I have had (most private or semi private) in the last year.

I expect that once the experiments are done and positive results announced there will be plenty more.

I have a contact who tells me there is more money out there chasing alternative energy than there are projects to absorb it.

The next bubble.

So get your business plan ready and your management team in place.
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 Apr 22, 2008 4:38 pm

Too much information for the common joe.


Yeah, when I explain p-b11 fusion I usually leave out the middle step (as does that pretty little 3-d animation).

1p + 11B = 12 / 4 = 3 helium nuclei is simple enough most people get it.

drmike
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Postby drmike » Tue Apr 22, 2008 9:45 pm

TallDave wrote:
1p + 11B = 12 / 4 = 3 helium nuclei is simple enough most people get it.


I know it is silly, but that is pure _fission_, not fusion! Just because it takes place in a plasma doesn't change the semantics.

However, it's an interesting side note on the history of how we got here after 50 years of trying to get fusion to work. We know fission works. In fact, there are something like 30 applications for new fission plants in the US for this year - it remains to be seen how many will be built.

The main difference between a plutonium fission reactor and a polywell fission reactor is the neutron density. And there's no radioactive ash. In terms of selling the idea to the general public (which you have to do eventually) this seems like a reasonable thing to say.

Thanks for the pictures you guys, they help a lot in terms of the "gee whiz" descriptions!

classicpenny
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Postby classicpenny » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:22 pm

This sure is weird. I agree that is definitely looks like fission, but getting accustomed to the idea will take some time. In my own defense, RWB did call it fusion, and the reaction all happens below iron on the curve of binding energy. I know that I'm going to have to somehow put this weirdness into my website (even change the name of the website?) - yet it really needs to be simpler - and I'm afraid that this kind of ambiguity will confuse people even more.

But I did manage to link the new animation to my old confusing p-B fusion diagram. (Just click on it.) Thank you Keegan!

drmike
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Postby drmike » Wed Apr 23, 2008 12:52 am

I wouldn't change it for now, but just keep it in the back of your mind. When you think you know how to make it seem weird, it will be the right time to change it.

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Wed Apr 23, 2008 1:35 am

I blame it on Helium.

Because it has a dual magic number nucleus and is near the beginning of the binding energy curve its binding energy is anomalous i.e. spikes well above the trend line.
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Average Joe
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Postby Average Joe » Wed Apr 23, 2008 1:53 am

Isn't it both fusion and fision?

That leads me to a question that you smart guys will think is elementary but I've been wondering about. What exactly imparts the high energy levels to the three helium atoms? Carbon12 breaks down into a berylium and a helium and the berylium breaks down into two helium. What about the splitting provides the power?

Do the first output helium and the second two output heliums have the same energy when the heavier atoms split?

My amateur understanding of uranium/plutonium fission is that the energy comes from neutrons freed from the nucleus when the nuclear strong force is overcome. With p-B11 fision is it the same force but applied to the entire atom rather than just the neutron?

Why are the output heliums so energetic?
Joe

MSimon
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Postby MSimon » Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:01 am

Average Joe wrote:Isn't it both fusion and fision?

That leads me to a question that you smart guys will think is elementary but I've been wondering about. What exactly imparts the high energy levels to the three helium atoms? Carbon12 breaks down into a berylium and a helium and the berylium breaks down into two helium. What about the splitting provides the power?

Do the first output helium and the second two output heliums have the same energy when the heavier atoms split?

My amateur understanding of uranium/plutonium fission is that the energy comes from neutrons freed from the nucleus when the nuclear strong force is overcome. With p-B11 fision is it the same force but applied to the entire atom rather than just the neutron?

Why are the output heliums so energetic?


Joe,

What provides the energy is the mass difference between the inputs and the outputs. Simply put the inputs - a proton and A B11 nucleus - weigh more than the 3 alpha outputs.

That difference is "converted" or better - transformed into energy.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

TallDave
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Postby TallDave » Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:46 am

I know it is silly, but that is pure _fission_, not fusion!


Except of course for the first part (p + 11B), which gets the whole thing going.

jmc
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Postby jmc » Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:34 am

At the end of the day p+B is a rearrangment of nucleons that results in less mass energy for the products of that rearrangment, fusion or fission is a moot point, what matters is the activation of the materials of the reactor and long lived isotopes produced and in this regards p+B scores very high.

There are three terms that determine the energy of a nucleon:

1)volume energy: This is the number of nucleons in the volume that are surrounded by other nucleons for P + B reaction this energy is probably not very negative, possibly even positive

2)surface energy: a correction to the volume energy term for nucleons on the surface which are not surrounded by other nucleonsm, this is less favourable (again there is more surface on He then on B so probably not that energetically favoourable)

3)Assymetry energy: The less the difference between the number of protons and the number of neutrons is the more energetically favourable the reaction, I think here's where the real energy is produced, B11 has one more neutrons than protons and H has one more proton than neutrons, He on the otherhand has an equal number of both nucleons this is probably where the real energy gains are made

4) Spin coupling term: If a nucleus has an even number of protons and an even number of neutrons then it gains energy from the spin coupling term, this is also more favourable for He4 than H or B11.

5) Coulomb energy: Protons repel each other, thus the more protons in a nucleus the greater this term, also protons exert long range repulsion while nucleons are only attracted to adjacent nucleons via the strong force
again unsure what value this term take in the p+11B -> 3He4


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