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Nuclear Fusion Breakthrough Confirmed: California Team Achieved Ignition - Newsweek

Nuclear Fusion Breakthrough Confirmed: California Team Achieved Ignition - Newsweek

Nuclear Fusion Breakthrough Confirmed: California Team Achieved Ignition - Newsweek
Aug 12, 2022 39 secs

"Achieving the conditions needed for ignition has been a long-standing goal for all inertial confinement fusion research and opens access to a new experimental regime where alpha-particle self-heating outstrips all the cooling mechanisms in the fusion plasma.".

In the experiments performed to reach this ignition result, researchers heat and compress a central "hot spot" of deuterium-tritium (hydrogen atoms with two and three neutrons, respectively) fuel using a surrounding dense piston also made from deuterium-tritium, creating a super hot, super pressurized hydrogen plasma.

"Ignition occurs when the heating from absorption of α particles [two protons and two neutrons tightly bound together] created in the fusion process overcomes the loss mechanisms in the system for a duration of time," said the authors in a paper publishing the results in the journal Physical Review E.


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