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Discussion and news on advancements in the field of nuclear fusion energy and related technologies.

Nuclear Fusion on Reddit

Focused on advancements in the field of nuclear fusion.

Submissions should be related to nuclear fusion or plasma physics as currently understood by the scientific community.

Nuclear fusion is a nuclear reaction in which two or more atomic nuclei collide together at a very high speed and form a new nucleus. For light elements like hydrogen or helium the fused nucleus weights less than the sum of the original nucleus. The missing mass is released as energy in accordance with Einstein's mass-energy equivalence equations. Fusion is the process that powers active or "main sequence" stars.

Primer on fusion power

Current mainstream approaches include:



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Looking for answers to the first Fusion and Fission Developer Survey.

The University of Michigan’s Fastest Path To Zero is looking for answers to a survey on the current state of fusion and fission software! If you’ve ever wondered how the software you have created or use daily compares to the software other computational scientists employ, this survey is for you.

You can find the survey at https://umich.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_7WYrbAqWtGYknfU

Please help us by filling out the survey ASAP, or sharing it far and wide with your contacts. It will remain open to responses for two weeks, until June 1.

The results will later be published online and be freely available to the whole fusion and fission communities.Think of this as the StackOverflow Dev Survey, but for our community.

This is a first step towards improving the User Experience of our industry. Exciting times ahead for software development in fusion and fission!

Andy Morales, PI
Aditi Verma, Co-PI

1 Comment
02:18 UTC


Winning the Race for Fusion Energy - Interview with Bob Mumgaard about China's Fusion Projects.

15:42 UTC


Greenwald limit overcome?

12:21 UTC


What is the current yield of fusion in comparison to energy pumped in?

Part of me mostly just wonders how far away we are from fusion in effeminacy terms. For example If I pump in 100kwh how many are we currently getting out .1kwh, 1kwh, 10kwh, 40kwh? Then I'd wonder how much yield youd need before itd be worth the effort. Where is the tipping point and how far are we from it?

22:46 UTC


In House Manufacturing at OpenStar Technologies

1 Comment
09:20 UTC


[Rumor] NIF achieves 5.2 MJ yield (up from 3.15 MJ)

Mod, please delete if this is not allowed. I have not seen any news articles about this, but a couple of weeks ago, Annie Kritcher (Physicist at LLNL) said in a Linkedin post that NIF has hit 5.2 MJ (2.4x target gain, 2.2 MJ into the target). The previous record was 3.15 MJ (1.5x target gain, 2.05 MJ into the target).


02:50 UTC


Are the magnets of magnetic confinement fusion plants AC or DC?

I'm curious because I've always wondered about the nuances of keeping a silly hot plasma in check with magnetism. I know there was once an issue, don't know if it's been solved, of hot plasma burping out the side of it's confinement field and I got thinking along the lines that perhaps a vibrating field at the right frequency might help keep more plasma in check, or at least control the losses a little better.

I'm a total armchair enthusiast with zero experience of plasma physics, so please be kind, I'm just being curious!

13:58 UTC


Fusion News, May 15, 2024 (9:48)

10:31 UTC


Predicting Performance for Magnetic Fusion | Machine Learning for Fusion pt 2

14:22 UTC


First Light standoff distance achievement: less than the headlines but more than the article texts

Dr. Ben Miles interviews First Light team member Mila Fitzgerald who worked on the modeling that made the standoff increase possible without lengthy and expensive physical testing. The previous distance of 10mm was needed because even if the projectile turned to plasma it wouldn't dissipate before contact - getting to 10cm likely means it will maintain integrity out to about 3 meter power plant lengths.



But whilst I was talking to her I got to ask her about a question that I think a lot of people come to when it comes to fusion, which is "why is it always ten years away?" and I think I got to a deeper answer than I've ever gotten to before...


The large reason the fusion has always been twenty years away, at least most of my life - our lifetimes, has been because we didn't understand enough about the really late stage compression of the gain reactions, right? And I know that a lot of the time in the past scientists kind of would compress the fuel down to a certain amount and would understand all of the physics there and would say "oh we're nearly there, we've nearly solved it" and then they'd compress it a bit further and they'd find a whole new kind of new basket of physics problems that they would have to untangle.

And I think it's really important to understand that the route, the landscape has changed because we now have achieved gain, and the great thing about having achieved gain now, multiple times at NIF, is that fusion, if it's going to move forward, it's going to need good modeling. And once you actually have good data to feed those models and to train those models and to teach them, you're then able to have much more accurate models, so it's kind of like a runaway process in a way, that the more that we get gain the better we're able to model it, the better we're able to design systems. There's still an incredible amount of science in that process...

21:01 UTC


Fluid Mechanics, Mechanical Engineering, Nuclear Fusion at Eindhoven

I am planning on doing a double Masters in Mechanical Engineering and Nuclear Fusion Science at Eindhoven in the coming year. My background is having done a bachelors in Mechanical Engineering, in which the most interesting topic I have come across is Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics. Fusion also fascinates me, hence the choice to do a double Masters. My questions are:

  1. If I am interested in fluid mechanics and thermodynamics, should I try and complete a specialised mechanical engineering masters in these topics, or would a more general masters degree be better suited for working in industry?

  2. I am also interested in plasma physics, which I have heard has a lot of similarity to fluid mechanics. Say I were to specialise in this sort of area, would I be making myself more valuable as an engineer in fusion? Or am I specialising in topics which are too far in the field of physicists that I'd be competing with physicists, and would struggle to provide anything (A Masters educated engineer vs a Professor in physics :)).

My question is a bit weird and not really well structured. Basically I want to know; for someone interested in these topics, who would eventually like to work in the fusion industry, should I specialise the mechanical side of my degree? Are there any specialisations to avoid for fusion as an engineer?

Thank you for your time and consideration.

16:21 UTC


Fusion/energy network for high schoolers

02:29 UTC


How much benefit would a Zero-G environment be to a magnetically confined fusion experiment?

This is obviously speculation for further into the future, there's some extreme practical issues with trying to build and operate a tokamak (or one of the other designs) in space. In theory something the size of Tokamak Energy's ST40 could be launched in one go, not including the absurd amount of solar panels it would need to power it. But ignoring those issues (or assuming it's far enough into the future that some of the hurdles of space industry have been overcome) would it even be beneficial to attempt?

There's a LOT of complex forces acting on the plasma. If you could remove gravity then you'd also remove and convection processes caused by different densities of plasma, which logically seems like it would simplify the task of containing/controlling the plasma.

Or else maybe it's irrelevant because the magnetic fields are so intense?

05:19 UTC


Cutting the SPARC VV in half

14:39 UTC


Figure eight tokamak reactor instead of a donut shaped reactor

based on my (limited) understanding of a Tokamak, one of the biggest challenges of a Tokamak is that particles drift up or down depending on how far away they are from the center of the donut. To compensated for the drift a current is generated in the plasma to create a twisted magnetic field that continuously moves particles from the inside to the outside of the donut and back. the plasma current, complicates the design and prevents a tokamak from running continuously. A stellarator solves the same problem but with a very complex magnetically field.

i was wondering if instead of a donut shape reactor, if it would be possible to make a figure 8 shaped reactor that would effectively do the same thing ( switching particles from the inside ( one ring of the 8) to the outside (other ring of the 8) as the plasma current in the Tokamak or the complex magnetic field in the stellarator, but in a more straight forward way.

01:09 UTC


3rd Edition of Techno-Optimist

The 3rd edition of Techno-Optimist is out, where I cover some news from ZAP Energy and Commonwealth Fusion Systems.


20:12 UTC

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