[Science] France to host nuclear fusion project


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Monkeys4me

This'll be great when the time comes that we can effectively harness fusion reactions for energy production, but it isn't going to address any of our near-term needs.

Fission reactors don't have to be constructed in the "current" manner (the "Three Mile Island" ones most people commonly think of). Pebble-bed reactors remove a great many risks... are they perfect, no... but they could be used in the short term to provide a much safer form of energy.

http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.09/china.html

:cool:

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vincent

^ :blink:

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Starcom826

Poor choice of location. There are a lot of countries that could use the energy more than France. I would rather see it in Japan, Korea, the U.S., or Germany.

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Fred Derf
Poor choice of location.  There are a lot of countries that could use the energy more than France.  I would rather see it in Japan, Korea, the U.S., or Germany.

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It won't be connected to the power grid. It is a test reactor that will only operate for half second durations and the results will be monitored.

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MEMO.INC
Fusion is combining two simple elements into a more complicated one.

The ultimate goal with Fusion is to combine Hydrogen and Oxygen so that the "waste" product is water.  The trick is to do this at reasonable temperatures.

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No that is incorrect, that is not how it works, fusion is how the sun works for example, the great amount of mass pushes hidrogen atoms to tightly that they make a new element helium, but the trick is that some of the mass of the hydrogen "transforms" to energy (E=M*C*C). Fusion is more efficint than fission and can generate lots of energy that is why it's so difficult to control, literally nothing can stand the heat produced, so the only way to contain the energy is with giagant magnetic fields, but to the date the needed energy to mantain those fields is much more than the one produced by the reactor itself.

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Starcom826
It won't be connected to the power grid.  It is a test reactor that will only operate for half second durations and the results will be monitored.

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Wasn't aware of that...but then why France? Then you'd think they'd do it in Japan with more technical resources. Maybe closer to EU HQ in Brussels...its just that southern France strikes me as an extremely odd location.

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jackwanders
Nice. Somday, Fusion will replace fission. And after that, Anit-Matter reactors!

From what i understand, fusion produces much less waste than fission does.

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To expand on what Matt said, a fusion reactor only produces radioactive materials when you stop the reactor and dismantle it. During operation, a fusion reactor produces only energy and steam iirc.

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Fred Derf
No that is incorrect, that is not how it works, fusion is how the sun works for example, the great amount of mass pushes hidrogen atoms to tightly that they make a new element helium, but the trick is that some of the mass of the hydrogen "transforms" to energy (E=M*C*C). Fusion is more efficint than fission and can generate lots of energy that is why it's so difficult to control, literally nothing can stand the heat produced, so the only way to contain the energy is with giagant magnetic fields, but to the date the needed energy to mantain those fields is much more than the one produced by the reactor itself.

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I wasn't "wrong". Fusion does fuse together lower order elements to make a higher order element.

I did say "the ultimate goal" of fusion was to combine hydrogen and oxygen to make water as a "waste" product.

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MEMO.INC
I wasn't "wrong".  Fusion does fuse together lower order elements to make a higher order element.

I did say "the ultimate goal" of fusion was to combine hydrogen and oxygen to make water as a "waste" product.

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Ok, sorry , then it's my mistake :p, I tought that when you said water as as waste product you meant like a direct product of fusion, because fussioning water and oxigen does not generate water.

perhaps you could explain me how they are going to use fussion to generate water, because i tought the ultimate goal is to heat water to move turbines to generate electricity

Edited by MEMO.INC
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MrA
The ITER will not produce any actual electrical energy or anything.  This is just a test reactor that will be activated for about half a second at a time.

We are some time away (probably still decades) before we have cheap, clean, nuclear fusion.

Canada pulled out of the ITER partnership because the prospects seemed dim (to make a bit of a pun about electrical power generation).

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I thought the purpose of the ITER was to produce a reactor that can self-sustain a fusion reaction, hence producing power. There are already fusion reactors around the world used to study the reaction for small amounts of time.

Also, E=MC^2 has nothing to do with nuclear reaction. It has to do with the theory that light (photons) and matter are the same and that they can be converted from one form to the other.

PS. I think this should be in BPN rather than NFN since I wouldn't consider this "nerd-free".

Edited by MrA
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Andareed

When you have any nuclear reaction, you measure the mass of the reactants compared the mass of the products. In order to conserve energy, the mass must have been converted to energy. You use E=mc^2 to determine the energy released. Strictly speaking, E=mc^2 should be written as delta(E)=delta(m)c^2; i.e., you can only look at changes in mass/energy and not absolutes.

With fission, you bombard a nucleus with neutron(s). The nucleus absorbs the neutron and splits into various fragments. There is no way to determine what the fragments will be; you can give probabilities on them only. In addition, more neutrons are emitted (usually 2 or 3), and hence you get a chain reaction. The more common products have long half lives. In fission reactors you also have control rods and moderators that absorb and slow neutrons. These rods/moderators also tend to become radioactive as they aborb neutrons.

Hydrogen fusion (in stars) is much more predictable, and you always end up with hydrogen (heavier) or helium. In fusion reactors, the material shielding or containing the reaction would generally become radioactive, as beta (electron) particles are emitted in fusion.

Overall, fusion is much cleaner than fission and gives higher energy yields. However, as stated, fusion requires extermely energetic particles to collide while fission performs better with slow (and less energetic) neutrons.

Matter/anti-matter reactors would be the most effecient form of energy conversion, as the the entire particle/anti-particle pair is converted completely into 2 photons (in the case of electrons/positrons). Antiparticles are made all the time. But in order to do so , you need to have high frequency/energy photons. So again, you would require far more energy to get the reaction going than would be produced :(

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struct
It won't be connected to the power grid.  It is a test reactor that will only operate for half second durations and the results will be monitored.

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lol, third time you've had to post that.

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Fred Derf
I thought the purpose of the ITER was to produce a reactor that can self-sustain a fusion reaction, hence producing power.  There are already fusion reactors around the world used to study the reaction for small amounts of time.

...

PS. I think this should be in BPN rather than NFN since I wouldn't consider this "nerd-free".

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"ITER will use a hydrogen plasma torus operating at over 100 million degrees Celsius. It is designed to produce approximately 500 MW (500 million watt) of fusion power sustained for up to 500 seconds (compared to JET's peak of 16 MW for less than a second). ITER will not generate electrical power."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ITER

Yes, science is a little nerdy but since it does not directly involve personal computers and we don't currently have a Science forum and it is news. NFN is the best fit.

lol, third time you've had to post that.

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+1

(I did make an error though, I said it would only sustain it for half a second. It will actually sustain it for up to 500 seconds)

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l33t

lol hehehehehehe, was i saw this on da news... im like omg they copied spiderman 2 :D hehehe

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jackwanders
The ITER will not produce any actual electrical energy or anything.  This is just a test reactor that will be activated for about half a second at a time.

We are some time away (probably still decades) before we have cheap, clean, nuclear fusion.

Canada pulled out of the ITER partnership because the prospects seemed dim (to make a bit of a pun about electrical power generation).

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If this is the case, then I take issue with the title of this thread.

ITER isn't the first fusion reactor in the world. Hell, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) had the Tokamak Fusion Reactor running 23 years ago. Now they've got the National Spherical Torus Experiment.

If this ITER reactor is just another test reactor, what's the big deal?

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Fred Derf
If this is the case, then I take issue with the title of this thread.

ITER isn't the first fusion reactor in the world.  Hell, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) had the Tokamak Fusion Reactor running 23 years ago.  Now they've got the National Spherical Torus Experiment.

If this ITER reactor is just another test reactor, what's the big deal?

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I agree with your point. The thread title is somewhat misleading. Nuclear Fusion is not a practical reality in 2005 (or, really, anytime soon).

[Thread Title Edited]

I'm not sure what the big deal is. Canada pulled out of the project because the costs seem to outweigh the benefits. You could build 10,000 MW worth of offshore wind generators for the cost of this project. At least that would produce practical renewable power. It is going to be a long time before Nuclear Fusion generates 10,000 megawatts.

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DreamweaverN

That they have been fighting over where to put it for so long. And I'm guessing it is going to be "the best test reactor to date!".

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jwjw1
Wasn't aware of that...but then why France?  Then you'd think they'd do it in Japan with more technical resources.  Maybe closer to EU HQ in Brussels...its just that southern France strikes me as an extremely odd location.

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Well,...I sure would'nt want it in my Country...if a 'chain reaction' went uncontrolled and uncontained....they might be using France to park BMWs/Porches/Audi's....you'd think they pick a country with more Technology..but then on the other hand...LOL

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SaLiVa
Matter/anti-matter reactors would be the most effecient form of energy conversion, as the the entire particle/anti-particle pair is converted completely into 2 photons (in the case of electrons/positrons). Antiparticles are made all the time. But in order to do so , you need to have high frequency/energy photons. So again, you would require far more energy to get the reaction going than would be produced :(

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Reminds me of this Omega particle Star Trek Voyager was talking about in one of its episodes. The Vulcan (Hot woman) was disappointed when she was unable to extract it or something...

Im still doing my A Level course on Nuclear Physics so it might be interesting to see how the things work. I only have the jist of it all.

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