Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Sorry BeeDee - That's A NOPE On The Fusion Ignition Front - Your Grandkids Still Waiting For Godot....,

To summarize: The “breakeven” achieved was between the output energy of the lasers and the fusion. Even just looking at that, Houston we have a problem. 2.1 megajoules of laser output energy went into a pellet and 2.5 megajoules of heat energy came out. So a 0.4 megajoule gain in energy! Woohoo!

But let’s use more familiar units. One kWh of energy is 3.6 megajoules so 0.4 megajules is 1/9 of a kWh or around 111 Watt hours. So enough energy to run an old-school 100W light bulb for a bit over an hour

1) Lasers provoke the fusion. The amount of electrical energy dumped into those lasers yields an approximate energy of 1%.

2) Capturing the heat energy produced by the fusion and transforming it into actually usable current would incur a conversion loss on the order of 60% (heat to electricity).

3) The technology used (relying upon lasers focused on a pellet of material that is compressed to fusion) was originally designed and is only useful to manufacture detonators for atomic bombs; it is not a viable technical path to a power plant.

So, the end-to-end cycle (electricity to power lasers – fusion – heat transformed to electricity) would require a 250 times factor improvement in energy efficiency.

In other words: a meaningless "achievement" about which very big and very misleading lies are being mass broadcast at a clueless and non-technical audience.

For decades it has been touted that fusion will be feasible and power our societies maybe 50 years from now. I contend it is time to pull the plug on these never-ending projects that never come to fruition. If Russia or China don't turn their attention to fusion, it will never get done period. The U.S. needs to redirect the gargantuan resources devoted to this white elephant to something feasible — it is becoming urgent.  |  “We have had a theoretical understanding of fusion for over a century, but the journey from knowing to doing can be long and arduous. Today’s milestone shows what we can do with perseverance,” said Dr. Arati Prabhakar, the President’s chief adviser for Science and Technology and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

“Monday, December 5, 2022, was a historic day in science thanks to the incredible people at Livermore Lab and the National Ignition Facility. In making this breakthrough, they have opened a new chapter in NNSA’s Stockpile Stewardship Program,” NNSA Administrator Jill Hruby said. “I would like to thank the members of Congress who have supported the National Ignition Facility because their belief in the promise of visionary science has been critical for our mission. Our team from around the DOE national laboratories and our international partners have shown us the power of collaboration.”

“The pursuit of fusion ignition in the laboratory is one of the most significant scientific challenges ever tackled by humanity, and achieving it is a triumph of science, engineering, and most of all, people,” LLNL Director Dr. Kim Budil said. “Crossing this threshold is the vision that has driven 60 years of dedicated pursuit — a continual process of learning, building, expanding knowledge and capability, and then finding ways to overcome the new challenges that emerged. These are the problems that the U.S. national laboratories were created to solve.”

“This astonishing scientific advance puts us on the precipice of a future no longer reliant on fossil fuels but instead powered by new clean fusion energy,” U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (NY) said. “I commend Lawrence Livermore National Labs and its partners in our nation’s Inertial Confinement Fusion (ICF) program, including the University of Rochester’s Lab for Laser Energetics in New York, for achieving this breakthrough. Making this future clean energy world a reality will require our physicists, innovative workers and brightest minds at our DOE-funded institutions, including the Rochester Laser Lab, to double down on their cutting-edge work. That’s why I’m also proud to announce today that I’ve helped to secure the highest-ever authorization of over $624 million this year in the National Defense Authorization Act for the ICF program to build on this amazing breakthrough.”

“After more than a decade of scientific and technical innovation, I congratulate the team at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the National Ignition Facility for their historic accomplishment,” said U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (CA). “This is an exciting step in fusion and everyone at Lawrence Livermore and NIF should be proud of this milestone achievement.”

“This is an historic, innovative achievement that builds on the contributions of generations of Livermore scientists. Today, our nation stands on their collective shoulders. We still have a long way to go, but this is a critical step and I commend the U.S. Department of Energy and all who contributed toward this promising breakthrough, which could help fuel a brighter clean energy future for the United States and humanity,” said U.S. Senator Jack Reed (RI), the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“This monumental scientific breakthrough is a milestone for the future of clean energy,” said U.S. Senator Alex Padilla (CA). “While there is more work ahead to harness the potential of fusion energy, I am proud that California scientists continue to lead the way in developing clean energy technologies. I congratulate the scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for their dedication to a clean energy future, and I am committed to ensuring they have all of the tools and funding they need to continue this important work.”

“This is a very big deal. We can celebrate another performance record by the National Ignition Facility. This latest achievement is particularly remarkable because NIF used a less spherically symmetrical target than in the August 2021 experiment,” said U.S. Representative Zoe Lofgren (CA-19). “This significant advancement showcases the future possibilities for the commercialization of fusion energy. Congress and the Administration need to fully fund and properly implement the fusion research provisions in the recent CHIPS and Science Act and likely more. During World War II, we crafted the Manhattan Project for a timely result. The challenges facing the world today are even greater than at that time. We must double down and accelerate the research to explore new pathways for the clean, limitless energy that fusion promises.”


Elite Donor Level Conflicts Openly Waged On The National Political Stage

thehill  |   House Ways and Means Committee Chair Jason Smith (R-Mo.) has demanded the U.S. Chamber of Commerce answer questions about th...