PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

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: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby Skipjack » Fri Aug 07, 2015 8:10 pm


ladajo
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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby ladajo » Fri Aug 07, 2015 8:22 pm

It would be fair to say that LM is in marketing mode. Self admitted even. They need funding.
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)
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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby Skipjack » Fri Aug 07, 2015 9:33 pm


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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Aug 07, 2015 10:36 pm

The implication was speed which was dependent on parallel paths being worked required more money. As a comparison General Fusion worked on many parallel aspects of their reactor. That takes money (seems GF is way better funded than LM's project). From what I gathered LM has not finished the low $ work, but perhaps they see that finishing up, (they did not say how close they were to the next step though). There was a lot of fluff in the presentation, but that was apologized for up front.

The claim that I took from the presentation was that the basic science was known (cusps and mirrors), but the critical details needed to be experimentally determined and those details would determine the practicality of their approach (magnet strengths, sizes, materials, losses)

I wondered if the amount of fluff was a function of tight lips on the critical details, or if secrecy may just be a function of thin results. I will be interested in what others have to say.

Plasma stability (at high beta) is frequently mentioned by Ladajo as Polywell's development progress advantage. LM said their CFR was inherently stable except in certain areas of the recirculation zone where mirror B fields were convex, but that was just one of the loss areas they needed to characterize.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby paperburn1 » Fri Aug 07, 2015 11:08 pm

Being a former Lockheed Martin guy I can probably's shed some light on this problem of funding. I remember distinctly that even though Lockheed Martin has a large corporation had a great deal of money each individual arm or branch might not have a large amount of funding. Case in point of what happened to me and our project. We had a need for some specialized components that another site was disposing of to the garbage. We requested that they sent these components up to our site as they would be a huge boon that we could re-utilize and bring ourself in way under budget. They would not give us these parts and would only sell them to us at wholesale. I did not have the money in our budget to buy these parts so they ended up going to landfill. This is how Lockheed Martin operates, your branches given so much funding to accomplish the task. If you need more is not available and if you need it from another's division you must pay for out of your budget. Thankfully I don't have these problems anymore as I'm with a different Corporation.
I am not a nuclear physicist, but play one on the internet.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby Skipjack » Sat Aug 08, 2015 2:09 am


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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby crowberry » Sat Aug 08, 2015 7:36 am

In the general introduction McGuire described Lockheed Martins goals of mobile fusion reactors even on air planes. They seem to have no interest at least currently in advanced fuels, which is understandable as they will run a thermal neutral plasma.

The heating of the plasma with Neutral Beam Injection (NBI) was described to heat the plasma at high beta through the diamagnetic current sheet at the surface of the plasma. The NBI needs a dense enough plasma "target" initially, but the starting of the reactor to get to the initial state is not clear to me.

The LM Compact Fusion Reactor (CFR) has borrowed ideas from the Polywell like high beta, recirculation of losses and magnetic cusp geometry, but it is not run like a Polywell, so it is not correct to describe it as an modified Polywell. It resembles and uses magnetic mirrors, but they have tried to improve the losses by recirculation and having a large volume where the fusion reactions occur. In the 2013 talk by Charles Chase he described the CFR as a "new magnetic configuration" and I would agree that it is an adequate description of it.

The CFR team is small and fusion is a very hard nut to crack, so I think the call for collaboration by McGuire just reflects the fact that they cannot do everything by themselves. Also General Fusion is doing the same by collaborating with universities and national labs and even outsourcing some of their problems.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby Giorgio » Sat Aug 08, 2015 7:43 am

A society of dogmas is a dead society.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby hanelyp » Sat Aug 08, 2015 7:43 pm

The daylight is uncomfortably bright for eyes so long in the dark.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby mvanwink5 » Sun Aug 09, 2015 5:36 am

Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby crowberry » Sun Aug 09, 2015 8:32 am


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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby mvanwink5 » Sun Aug 09, 2015 12:24 pm

In other words, from what I can gather McGuire is a really, really long way from proof of concept. His only positive at this point it would seem is he is up and running on a machine designed to facilitate rapid results and at this point there are no obvious show stoppers, just challenges that seem to have possible solutions (not enough details for me to be more positive on this). As to plasma management which is 'the' challenge for everyone, their one area of questionable plasma stability is outside of the bulk plasma zone in an area of recirculation. So, their hope seems to me to be that the losses there will be manageable.

Crowberry is right that LM's CFR is as dissimilar as it is similar to Polywell, as the CFR is purely magnetic in its methods of plasma containment. So, the CFR uses cusps for bulk plasma containment and magnetic mirrors for leakage management, Polywell predominantly uses cusp containment (for electrons) via Grad's now proven conjecture(*). Further, LM's CFR has no potential well as Polywell does given its pure magnetic configuration. Therefore the CFR has to achieve containment of fusion ash long enough to provide a fusion heating source. I wonder how this will work out for the cusp magnets which reside in the heart of the machine, for although LM mentioned this issue, it is far down the road for development. One might call this the CFR's first wall problem.

In contradistinction, Polywell wants the fusion ash to leave immediately, steered through the cusps, as it provides no benefit due to deriving all fusion collision energy from the potential well acceleration of ions. Thus, the Polywell cusp magnets are virtually subject only to neutron flux. A big difference it would seem, especially for the cusp coil supports (no ion recirculation as exists in the CFR).

Well, those are my thoughts.


(*) I wonder if it could be argued that Polywell has evolved to pure cusp containment for electrons (magnetic), as perhaps electron recirculation isn't as important as was once thought given the success of Grad's cusp conjecture. But fuel ions are indeed contained by the potential well created by the trapped electrons with fusion ash free to quickly leave. Hence, conceptually, Polywell containment in principle is both a combination of magnetic and electric fields and thus significantly stands apart from LM's CFR (as pointed out by Crowberry above).

edited for clarification...
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby D Tibbets » Sun Aug 09, 2015 5:10 pm

To error is human... and I'm very human.

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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby pdxpyro » Mon Aug 10, 2015 9:44 pm


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Re: PPPL Colloquium: The Lockheed Martin CFR, Aug 6, 2015

Postby mvanwink5 » Mon Aug 10, 2015 11:53 pm

Thank you pdxpyro for that link, very kind.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.


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