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  • #891
    AvatarRezwan
    Member

    This NYT article on the National Ignition Facility is from May 2009. Do we have any more recent information?

    What a dramatic machine.

    In theory, the facility’s 192 lasers — made of nearly 60 miles of mirrors and fiber optics, crystals and light amplifiers — will fire as one to pulverize a fleck of hydrogen fuel smaller than a match head. Compressed and heated to temperatures hotter than those of the core of a star, the hydrogen atoms will fuse into helium, releasing bursts of thermonuclear energy.

    And great visuals!

    #7857
    AvatarBrian H
    Member

    Rezwan wrote: This NYT article on the National Ignition Facility is from May 2009. Do we have any more recent information?

    What a dramatic machine.

    In theory, the facility’s 192 lasers — made of nearly 60 miles of mirrors and fiber optics, crystals and light amplifiers — will fire as one to pulverize a fleck of hydrogen fuel smaller than a match head. Compressed and heated to temperatures hotter than those of the core of a star, the hydrogen atoms will fuse into helium, releasing bursts of thermonuclear energy.

    And great visuals!

    And then a new matchhead is positioned within micrometers of the correct spot, and repeat. Uh-huh. The whole project is whacked.

    #7865
    BreakableBreakable
    Keymaster

    Brian H wrote:
    And then a new matchhead is positioned within micrometers of the correct spot, and repeat. Uh-huh. The whole project is whacked.

    They probably though about that, with their laser rulers and such….

    #7873
    Avataremmetb
    Member

    Breakable wrote:

    And then a new matchhead is positioned within micrometers of the correct spot, and repeat. Uh-huh. The whole project is whacked.

    They probably though about that, with their laser rulers and such….
    It’s better than that even… Word has it that the director of NIF thought the whole thing up whilst clayshooting with his hunting buddies 😉

    #7892
    AvatarTulse
    Participant

    I had understood that the overwhelmingly primary purpose of the NIF is warhead reliability research, and that even if they get over-unity, there really is no obvious practical path from its setup to fusion power plants. Is that correct?

    #7977
    AvatarIvy Matt
    Participant

    Obvious? Practical? I don’t know about that, but LLNL does have some kind of a plan for a power plant, albeit a hybrid fission-fusion one.

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