Canada General Fusion

Consider specific people in the fusion research community, business, or politics who should be made aware of polywell research, and how we might reach them.

Moderators: tonybarry, MSimon

Zixinus
Posts: 200
Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2007 4:39 pm

Canada General Fusion

Postby Zixinus » Tue Jul 31, 2007 2:39 pm

A potential target?

http://www.generalfusion.com/

jlumartinez
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2007 7:29 pm
Location: Spain

Postby jlumartinez » Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:14 am

It looks interesting.

The kind of webpage these guys have is one of the things I would try to improve in the EMC2 company.

Their web seem quite complete with text, pictures, documents, news, list of member team,.... If you are an external potential big investor in which company you will invest if you see both webpages (GF Inc. and EMC2FUSION ) ???

In this world IMAGE is everything. EMC2 needs a general make-up to create good impression of the potential and strength of the company. This is done mainly by having a good webage with well-looking technical papers attached. You don´t need only a good technical background in your company. Also you need a good marketing to sell outside the good ideas you are working on. It is like a good gift with a nasty wrapper

If you gives an impressive gift you always have to wrap it with the most wonderful paper.

Nanos
Posts: 339
Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:57 pm
Location: Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, UK
Contact:

Postby Nanos » Fri Aug 03, 2007 6:52 am

As a side note, if you look at Tri Alpha Energy, they managed to get themselves $40 million investment without a website!

http://www.redherring.com/Article.aspx? ... ureCapital

Perhaps if we could learn what they did right, we might be on the right road.

Otherwise, I'm in agreement, that a decent website would help.

jlumartinez
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2007 7:29 pm
Location: Spain

Postby jlumartinez » Sun Aug 12, 2007 12:21 am

What they have done better is having 2 papers in Science magazine (1997). http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/a ... f_ipsecsha (Colliding Beam Fusion Reactor ; Science 21 November 1997: Vol. 278. no. 5342, pp. 1419 - 1422; DOI: 10.1126/science.278.5342.1419 ). This is a great help to convince people.

Also they have had time in this last 10 years to sell their colliding beam reactor (which is also an IEC fusion technology as Polywell, and also it was restrict according to Rider´s thesis to not reach break-even but they refuted that theory and at last they got funds) http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/f ... /5375/307a

Besides, I want to mention that "Tri Alpha Energy" cites in all it patents to Bussard´s patents. It´s interesting this point ...
Last edited by jlumartinez on Sun Aug 12, 2007 5:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Nanos
Posts: 339
Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2007 8:57 pm
Location: Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, UK
Contact:

Postby Nanos » Sun Aug 12, 2007 7:48 am

The first link there jlumartinez isn't working for me.

jmc
Posts: 427
Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 9:16 am
Location: Ireland

Postby jmc » Fri Sep 07, 2007 3:27 pm

I had a look at their patent for the final reactor, it looks wacky to the extreme!!! Sort of reminds me of Charles Babage's hand cranked computer (which incidentally ate up vast portions of the British navies funds during the 19th century with no result)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Babbage

I don't mean to be closed minded but when I looked at the device my mind just instantly said "To many moving part!" and all supposed to operate with perfect subsecond precision, maybe it can be done but I noticed all the experiments to date have used electrically powered drivers rather than mechanical pistons

Let's just say I'll believe it when I see it.

Harvey
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:16 pm
Location: CNANDA

Postby Harvey » Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:30 pm

Interesting...

Steam, pistons, and such mechanical things have been powering transportation for a little while now; needless to say your engine has a bunch of moving parts. Now while many will piston engines will disappear shortly with the coming of fuel cells or batteries or something the problem is that the cost of the alternatives is too high and the reliability too low.

Fusion is all about how much power you can dump into the system; to get net gain lots has to be dumped in, and for a pulsed system to get anywhere near net gain then it is 100s of MJ/pulse. General Fusion's concept allows for lots of power in at a very low cost with the penalty of moving parts.

From a cost perspective pulsed power supplies (micro sec pulses) tend to be about $5 to $10/J...therefore 100MJ needs about $500M power supply just to get started...compressed air on the other hand is dirt cheap...i.e. a few 100k for the same about of energy.

So while it might be a long shot it costs very little to find out.

MSimon
Posts: 14330
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

POPS?

Postby MSimon » Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:51 pm

Here is LANL on MTF:

http://wsx.lanl.gov/mtf.html

It looks like no expense was spared.

It looks like the GF approach will be very interesting if they can get it to work. Steam driven rams? Is this a joke?

Electrically driven linear motors are inherently more efficient and controlable. It is why the Navy is going from steam driven catapults to electrical drive.

A steam driven fusion plant?

MSimon
Posts: 14330
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Tue Sep 11, 2007 10:02 pm

How do you get 1 uSec precision with compressed air drive if you have more than 1 piston?

I could do that with electromagnetic drive by phasing.

I don't think you can control compressed air to that precision.

Plus they are obviously planning to burn very neutronic D-T.

Their system for breeding is good though. Inject the gas in a ball of liquid Lithium metal and compress it. With a big enough ball most of the neutrons breed.

And how do you keep several hundred pistons working properly and precisely?

No one in his right mind would spend a nickel on this contraption. Not only that the heating is adiabatic. Which is a lousy way to add heat. All the "advantages" of a Tokamak plus the disadvantages of mechanical complexity.

I think we have a real loser here.

Harvey
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 9:16 pm
Location: CNANDA

Postby Harvey » Tue Sep 11, 2007 11:09 pm

Okay, I get it; this is a "only Polywell works" discussion group, not a general scientific discussion group.

But to share what I have read:

Again it is about cost; your electromagnetic drivers require a huge power supply and are very expensive. My guess is that will be about 1000x what pneumatic impact will cost...i.e. you will need nearly a billion dollars so it will not be funded by government or private industry.

MTF at LANL is not a "spare no expense" place. They are quite under funded and pay huge tariffs to the National Lab. Exact dollars etc are available on the web.

You don't control compressed steam, you servo the pistons. Regarding the Navy; they do not have any constraints on cost.

Proton Boron while "officially" aneutronic (less than 1% of energy from neutrons) unfortunately produces about .1% neutrons. Even more unfortunately these will kill you. In comparison General Fusion with their lead filled sphere will have much less neutrons than any p-B11 scheme.

GF might very well turn out not to work but it might also be an affordable way to get net gain. Certainly it is a new approach. I give them a higher chance of success than any p-B11 proposal...

MSimon
Posts: 14330
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Postby MSimon » Wed Sep 12, 2007 11:14 am

Harvey wrote:Okay, I get it; this is a "only Polywell works" discussion group, not a general scientific discussion group.

But to share what I have read:

Again it is about cost; your electromagnetic drivers require a huge power supply and are very expensive. My guess is that will be about 1000x what pneumatic impact will cost...i.e. you will need nearly a billion dollars so it will not be funded by government or private industry.

MTF at LANL is not a "spare no expense" place. They are quite under funded and pay huge tariffs to the National Lab. Exact dollars etc are available on the web.

You don't control compressed steam, you servo the pistons. Regarding the Navy; they do not have any constraints on cost.

Proton Boron while "officially" aneutronic (less than 1% of energy from neutrons) unfortunately produces about .1% neutrons. Even more unfortunately these will kill you. In comparison General Fusion with their lead filled sphere will have much less neutrons than any p-B11 scheme.

GF might very well turn out not to work but it might also be an affordable way to get net gain. Certainly it is a new approach. I give them a higher chance of success than any p-B11 proposal...


Yes, pneumatics will be cheap in theory.

Getting 200 or 500 pneumatic cylinders to all operate to within 1 uSec or less precision will run up the cost and even then it is uncertain that it can be done. Then there is the wear out factor.

BTW lead is not very good at stopping neutrons. Stopping neutrons is best done by first thermalizing them and then absorbing them. Boron is a good absorbent. The result is low energy gammas. Which are primarily reduced by mass. Lead is good if you want to minimize volume of the mass. Concrete is good if you want to minimize cost.

MTF is obviously well funded compared to what Dr. B has had to work with.

Yes. You servo the piston. I'm not aware of any pneumatic servo that can attain 1 USec precision. The speed of sound limits you. For the sake of argument let us stipulate that the speed of sound in the compressed air is 1,000 m/second. That means that to get 1 uSec precision you must control the various distances in the machine to better than 1 mm. Tough. Then there is the wear out.

Honestly, if I thought this approach had better prospects I'd start to work on the engineering ASAP. In any case I absolutely would not make the prototype dependent on getting the compressed air cylinders working. That would be phase 2 after I proved it with electrical drivers.

What the rig requires is in fact 200 or 500 servo controlled oscillators. Not only kept identical in frequency but also phase. At 1,000 Hz operating frequency the phase would need to be controlled to within .1 degree or better. Which implies a system response out to 10 MHz. Do you off hand know of any pneumatic servo systems with a Bode plot that has no resonances and is 3 dB down at 10 MHz? Quite a trick if you can pull it off. Heck, it will be very hard to do with electromagnets. I'll go easy on you. Do you know of any pneumatic servos that extend out to even 1 MHz?

Consider this. If the servo piston is more that 1 mm away from the gas valve you can't control the system out to 1 MHz. The speed of sound kills you by adding a lag to the system that is significant relative to the control frequency. For good control without the system running away into oscillation you want a bode plot that extends to at least 3X your required frequency response and 10 X is better. It also means your piston can't be more than 2 mm in diameter or stroke. What gas pressure will be required to get enough force from a 2 mm dia piston? Just because I can conceive of something doesn't mean I can engineer it.

==========

I'm always looking for better devices and improvements in the field. This one has some problems as conceived. How about the requirement to get the liquid metal spinning so as to create a vortex induced void in the center? That will be the first trick required even before considering compression. Then you have to do high pressure gas injection without distorting the sphere. I don't think they have that one solved.

===

The neat thing about the Bussard machine is that similar machines are already producing fusions. What Dr. B has done is to reduce the losses to make such a machine a net energy generator. Plus the controls are all electrical. Electrical power supplies these days come it at $1 to $2 a watt for low volume production. It goes down to $.25 a watt for high volume. What does an air compressor cost in terms of $ per watt?

==

By trying to optimize the cost of the power supplies required for compression you suboptimize a LOT of other things.

==

Dr. B's compressor uses fixed magnetic fields and fixed drive voltages. The compression can be varied by controlling electron injection. I can do that easily at up to 100 MHz.

==

The technology Dr. B is using is common in semiconductor processing. And linear accelerators (becoming common in industry for other uses). Air cylinders with 1 MHz response frequency are common where exactly?

==

Net gain is always about energy of compression vs power out. Adiabatic compression is not very efficient compared to linear accelerators. So right away you start out with a big handicap. The same one ITER is up against. Since you are using adiabatic compression you are limited to D-T fuel. Because only the thermal tail gets hot enough to fuse.

==

Dr. B's machine uses linear accelerators for "compression" which is why he will be able to burn pBj and adiabatic machines can't. It is just a matter of getting the drive voltages up. Not too tough.

I look forward to your response.


Return to “Networking”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests