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Radical hydrogen-boron reactor leapfrogs current nuclear fusion tech
Posted on Friday, February 21, 2020 @ 17:40:43 GMT by vlad

Devices Via New Atlas: Radical hydrogen-boron reactor leapfrogs current nuclear fusion tech by Loz Blain
Australian company HB11 says it's well on the way to nuclear fusion energy generation without the radioactive fuels or super-high temperatures/kuligssen/Depositphotos

"We are sidestepping all of the scientific challenges that have held fusion energy back for more than half a century," says the director of an Australian company that claims its hydrogen-boron fusion technology is already working a billion times better than expected.


HB11 Energy is a spin-out company that originated at the University of New South Wales, and it announced today a swag of patents through Japan, China and the USA protecting its unique approach to fusion energy generation.

Fusion, of course, is the long-awaited clean, safe theoretical solution to humanity's energy needs. It's how the Sun itself makes the vast amounts of energy that have powered life on our planet up until now. Where nuclear fission – the splitting of atoms to release energy – has proven incredibly powerful but insanely destructive when things go wrong, fusion promises reliable, safe, low cost, green energy generation with no chance of radioactive meltdown.

It's just always been 20 years away from being 20 years away. A number of multi-billion dollar projects are pushing slowly forward, from the Max Planck Institute's insanely complex Wendelstein 7-X stellerator to the 35-nation ITER Tokamak project, and most rely on a deuterium-tritium thermonuclear fusion approach that requires the creation of ludicrously hot temperatures, much hotter than the surface of the Sun, at up to 15 million degrees Celsius (27 million degrees Fahrenheit). This is where HB11's tech takes a sharp left turn.

The results of decades of research by Emeritus Professor Heinrich Hora, HB11's approach to fusion does away with rare, radioactive and difficult fuels like tritium altogether – as well as those incredibly high temperatures. Instead, it uses plentiful hydrogen and boron B-11, employing the precise application of some very special lasers to start the fusion reaction.

Here's how HB11 describes its "deceptively simple" approach: the design is "a largely empty metal sphere, where a modestly sized HB11 fuel pellet is held in the center, with apertures on different sides for the two lasers. One laser establishes the magnetic containment field for the plasma and the second laser triggers the ‘avalanche’ fusion chain reaction. The alpha particles generated by the reaction would create an electrical flow that can be channeled almost directly into an existing power grid with no need for a heat exchanger or steam turbine generator."...

Full story: https://newatlas.com/energy/hb11-hydrogen-boron-fusion-clean-energy/


 
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"Radical hydrogen-boron reactor leapfrogs current nuclear fusion tech" | Login/Create an Account | 1 comment | Search Discussion
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Why the UK May Hold the Secret to Providing Limitless Energy (Score: 1)
by vlad on Saturday, February 29, 2020 @ 10:38:11 GMT
(User Info | Send a Message) http://www.zpenergy.com
From the latest Future Energy eNews (Feb 2020, Vol.21): Story #2 is an update on the UK effort toward mastering fusion power, which uses the same method as another COFE3 speaker of ours, Eric Lerner, who leads the famous Princeton proton-boron (PB11) focus fusion effort http://princetonfusionsystems.com/?page_id=29 [princetonfusionsystems.com]. Similar developments are concurrently happening this month in Australia, where they call it “hydrogen boron fusion” or HB11 Energy, the name of their company https://www.hb11.energy/our-story . This type of fusion is different than the usual hydrogen H-H fusion or the deuterium D-D fusion since it produces four (4) times as much energy theoretically, with an electrical discharge input. Also, this month, the U.S. Department of Energy announced https://arpa-e.energy.gov/?q=news-item/department-energy-announces-30-million-fusion-energy-r-and-d up to $30 million in funding to support innovative R&D for a range of enabling technologies required for commercially attractive fusion energy. The funding effort, Galvanizing Advances in Market-aligned fusion for an Overabundance of Watts (GAMOW, pronounced gamma), is run jointly by the Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) and Office of Science’s Fusion Energy Sciences program (SC-FES). ARPA-E will contribute up to $15 million in funding over a three-year program period, while the FES will contribute up to $5 million a year for three years for qualifying technologies. Our COFE12 also plans to have a cold fusion speaker, Dr. Ed Storms www.futurenergy.org [www.futurenergy.org] who also spoke at COFE1 in 1999, even though he cost me my job at the USPTO due to the bad publicity that cold fusion had twenty years ago. Luckily, I won my arbitration case and was able to retire from the agency in 2016 with an expunged record.


Tom Valone, PhD



 

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