Worldwide Progress toward Realizing Nuclear Fusion Energy
Nuclear fusion is the source of energy that powers the stars in the universe. It is a nuclear reaction of light nuclei (isotopes of hydrogen) fusing into heavier ones (helium) once they collide with sufficiently high speeds to overcome the repulsive Coulomb forces of like charged particles.
This releases enormous amounts of energy through the conversion of mass (0.7 % of the original mass) into energy. In practice to achieve such a high temperature "plasma furnace" while maintaining its burn for long time durations has been an extremely challenging scientific and technological problem.
The most promising approach is the so-called tokamak concept. Such a device consists of a toroidally shaped vacuum chamber, surrounded by magnetic coils and the plasma is initiated by inducing an electric current in the plasma which also creates its own magnetic field that helps to confine the plasma.
I will review the enormous scientific and technical progress made in the last few decades in fusion research, its present status, including the building of a multi-billion dollar scale burning plasma experiment (ITER) as an international activity, and finally will discuss some of the technical challenges
that remain toward realizing a demonstration fusion power plant.
Professor Miklos Porkolab is an internationally recognized physicist, known for his work in both experimental and theoretical plasma physics.
|Worldwide Progress toward Realizing Nuclear Fusion Energy|
|Powering the Future
This is a four-part documentary series presented by biologist M. Sanjayan, forecasting the world of energy in the not-too-distant future.
|Harnessing Fusion Energy: The Power of Light
Our future health, happiness and economic well-being depends on producing plentiful, inexpensive, carbon-free energy that is available 24 hours/day, worldwide.
|Nuclear Fusion: Clean Power for the Next Hundred Centuries
Nuclear fusion, the process that powers the sun, can also be harnessed for power on Earth. Present research in magnetic confinement fusion is promising and advancing.
|Star Power on Earth: The Path to a Limitless Clean Energy Future
Ed Moses, Director of the National Ignition Facility describes the path to a limitless supply of clean, safe energy. He explains how the world's biggest, most energetic laser works and it's goals.
|The Energy Challenge and the Case for Fusion
Chris Llewellyn Smith discusses the advantages of fusion power for meeting the future energy needs of a still growing and modernizing world population.
|Energy and the Industrial Revolution: Past, Present and Future
Arun Majumdar discusses a variety of research opportunities and challenges in stationary power and transportation systems that could enable the transition of our energy economy to a sustainable one.