Commercial Fusion Energy: Is Clean, Safe, Abundant and On Demand Energy More Closer Than We Think?
Benefits of Commercial Fusion Energy :
Clean. Fusion produces zero greenhouse gas emissions, emitting only helium as exhaust. (Greenhouse gases damages the environment by causing climate change and trapping heat, and have far-ranging health effects like contributing to respiratory diseases, smog and air pollution. )
Safe. Fusion energy is inherently safe, with zero possibility of a meltdown scenario and no waste that lives long.
Abundant. There is enough fusion fuel to power the planet for hundreds of millions of years.
On Demand. (We can make it when we need it.)
Commonwealth Fusion Systems (CFS) may be one step closer to making a reality the elusive goal of fusion energy. CFS claims to have created a superconducting magnet. Back in September, CFS unveiled the 2-meter-long, 1-meter-wide, D-shaped electromagnet that it said can produce a magnetic field “roughly 500,000 times Earth’s natural field, twice as strong as any similar superconducting magnet.” With this magnet technology, CFS is claiming they can build a small prototype fusion power plant by 2025.
If you think something is possible, with dedication and a continued compounding of effort, it might just become reality. Three years ago, CFS didn’t even know that that a magnet such as the one unveiled in September of 2021 could even exist, and now one does. This magnet is made of exotic high-temperature superconducting materials that can produce field twice as strong as other superconductors in the industry.
A fusion reactor tries to capture the energy released after “nuclei of deuterium and tritium, the heavy isotopes of hydrogen, fuse to produce helium and energetic neutrons.” To accomplish this fusion, the tokamak depends on an intense magnetic fields to capture and release “a superhot ionized gas, or plasma, within a doughnut-shaped vacuum chamber.”
The problem that researches face in bringing commercial fusion energy to full market is that they have yet to build a fusion reactor (or tokamak as it is called) that creates more energy than it consumes. They are still trying to determine what size does the fusion reactor need to be to reach the break-even point, so that it can then produce more energy than it consumes. Sometimes bigger isn’t always the answer. For the longest time researches believed that a fusion reactor needed to be large to reach the point where it creates more energy than it consumes. The ITER tokamak that is being constructed in France believes in this idea that larger is key the break-even point, so it is building a reactor that has a vacuum chamber 11 meters tall and 19 meters wide. But the CFS tokamak challenges the long-lived idea that larger is key to the break-even point.
If these tokamaks can be made smaller, then they can possibly be made cheaper and easier to build. But there is still a long ways to go. Researches still have to find or create materials that can face the heat and create better was of venting the helium exhaust from the vacuum chamber. But CFS is definitely closer than they were in making commercial fusion energy a common reality.
ABOUT THE BLOGGER: ShonSpeaks is the managing member of The Fleming-Bruce Law Firm, P.L.L.C. where she practices in the areas of personal injury law, family law, probate law, and bankruptcy, and she is a Certified Brain Health Professional. ShonSpeaks has her own blog at www.freeyourthinkingmind.com where she writes and releases blogs on all subjects ranging from mental and emotional health, religion, relationships and life in general.
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