Two things I have questions about the aneutronic fusion. How do we know there won’t be significant hydrogen hydrogen fusion is the plasmoid and how certain is anyone that the side reaction of hydrogen with helium, that produce neutrons, is as prevelant as calculated given the highly organized state of high B field of a plasmoid and fusion produces two high energy alphas and a low energy one. Could the side reaction in this process be overstated.
The nuclear physics is pretty well understood. The typical tests involve firing the lighter reaction element at a target made of the heavier element. Hydrogen-hydrogen fusion is a pretty low reaction rate. It is well studied thanks to our solar system’s largest fusion reactor. The magnetic fields effectively increase the travel path of ions which increases the chances of collision and in some cases and change the atomic physics by splitting levels in the electron orbits. I would be hesitant in calling the magnetic fields organized but they are strong.
Most of the neutron producing reactions are driven by by-products and the energetic alpha particles. Compared to D-T fusion the neutron problem is pretty small for p+11B.
Thank you, that makes perfect sense. In regards to the side reactions producing neutrons, I was trying to imagine if there was a way to reduce the neutron production to a point where less shielding would be necessary and would be more applicable to transportation(aircraft, trains, trucks,etc). I guess that is for after ignition is reached.