China creates 'artificial sun' to burn at 100,000,000 degrees

An interior view of the magnetic chamber used to create the ‘artificial sun’ in Hefei Anhui province Nov. 12 2018. CNS

An interior view of the magnetic chamber used to create the ‘artificial sun’ in Hefei Anhui province Nov. 12 2018. CNS

That is about six times as hot as our actual sun, which burns at a mere 27 million degrees Fahrenheit. Atomic nuclei begin to fuse together releasing huge amounts of energy but without the massive amount of deadly radiation which our existing nuclear fission reactors create.

Fusion is seen as a solution for energy issues as it is clean, sustainable and powerful. Experiments on plasma equilibrium and instability along with confinement and transport, plasma-wall interaction, and energetic particle physics were demonstrated. Nuclear fusion is a staggering technical innovation in which hydrogen from sea water and readily available lithium is heated to more than 150 million°C.

Scientists are hoping that at 100 million degrees Celsius they would be able to start a fusion reaction.

To harness the energy, the plasma must be suspended inside a reactor.

In recent years, scientists working on the project have announced a number of breakthroughs.

Scientists at the Hefei Institute of Physical Science, which is part of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, have been working on an experiment to achieve nuclear fusion since 2006. As per experts, 100 million degrees Celsius is touted to be the minimum temperature required to trigger self-sustaining nuclear fusion on Earth.

What's surprising is that the scientists working there have now claimed to have produced temperatures of 100 million degrees Celsius in the simulator - much more than 15 million degrees Celsius temperature of Sun's core. One key in this experiment was the team's work to resolve particle and power exhaust, something it says is critical for high-performance steady state operation. These challenges include building a reactor that can confine and suspend the plasma, and then scaling this expensive equipment up to the point where it would become commercially viable.

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