Archive for the ‘nuclear energy’ category: Page 20

Jul 31, 2022

Ex-SpaceX Engineer Builds Martian Nuclear Reactor To Tackle Earth’s Power Crisis

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, nuclear energy, space travel, sustainability

Elon Musk has already shaped our world in several different ways, and the debate of whether they’re all beneficial to humanity is ongoing. But apart from putting electric vehicles on top of the automotive world’s agenda and making us dream about outer space travel, there is one somewhat unintentiona…

Jul 31, 2022

Development of solid-state electrolytes for sodium-ion battery–A short review

Posted by in categories: chemistry, nuclear energy, particle physics, space, sustainability

Nowadays, the development of renewable energy sources, such as wind, solar, and nuclear energy sources, has become imperative, due to the limited resource constraints of the traditional fossil fuels [1 ]. However, these renewable sources could not deliver a regular power supply as the sources are variable in time and diffuse in space. Thus, the focus has been shifted to the electrical energy storage to smooth the intermittency of the energy sources. Rechargeable battery has the ability to store chemical energy and convert it into electrical energy with high efficiency [ 2]. Lithium-ion battery (LIB), as one typical rechargeable electrochemical battery, has dominated the markets of portable electronic devices, electric vehicles, and hybrid electric vehicles in the past decades, due to its high output voltages, high energy densities, and long cycle life; even though the high cost and the shortage of lithium resources are inhibiting the application of LIB in large-scale energy storage [[3], [4], [5], [6], [7], [8], [9]].

Sodium-ion battery (SIB) is one promising alternative to LIB, with comparable performance to that of LIB, abundant sodium resources and low price of starting materials [[10], [11], [12], [13]]. As Na atom is heavier and larger than those of Li atom, the gravimetric and volumetric energy density of Na-ion battery are expected to not exceed those of the Li analogues [14]. However, energy density would not be considered as the critical issue in the field of large-scale grid support, for which the operating cost and the battery durability are the most important aspects [15,16].

Jul 27, 2022

New magnet breakthrough could unleash smaller, more potent fusion reactors

Posted by in categories: innovation, nuclear energy

Nuclear fusion promises practically limitless energy and an unshackling from the harmful impact of fossil fuel consumption.

Now, researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) announced they found a way to build powerful magnets much smaller than ever before, a press statement reveals.

Interesting Engineering.

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Jul 20, 2022

TAE Technologies Exceeds Fusion Reactor Performance Goals

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

Following scientific milestones with current fusion reactor, Norman, TAE receives investments from long-term partner Google, as well as Chevron, Sumitomo Corporation of Americas, and others to fund the construction of the company’s sixth-generation research reactor that will demonstrate the viability of net energy from TAE’s approach.

FOOTHILL RANCH, Calif. 0, July 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — After achieving temperatures greater than 75 million degrees Celsius and demonstrating unmatched real-time control of plasma with its state-of-the-art fusion research reactor, Norman, TAE Technologies today announced that it has secured strategic and institutional investments to fund the construction of its next research reactor, Copernicus.

Jul 20, 2022

Go with the flow: New findings about moving electricity could improve fusion devices

Posted by in categories: mathematics, nuclear energy

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have found that updating a mathematical model to include a physical property known as resistivity could lead to the improved design of doughnut-shaped fusion facilities known as tokamaks.

“Resistivity is the property of any substance that inhibits the flow of electricity,” said PPPL physicist Nathaniel Ferraro, one of the collaborating researchers. “It’s kind of like the viscosity of a fluid, which inhibits things moving through it. For example, a stone will move more slowly through molasses than water, and more slowly through water than through air.”

Scientists have discovered a new way that can cause instabilities in the edge, where temperatures and pressures rise sharply. By incorporating resistivity into models that predict the behavior of plasma, a soup of electrons and that makes up 99% of the visible universe, scientists can design systems for future that make the plasma more stable.

Jul 20, 2022

China’s Artificial Sun Just Broke a Record for Longest Sustained Nuclear Fusion

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, physics

In a new world record, China’s “artificial sun” project has sustained a nuclear fusion reaction for more than 17 minutes, reports Anthony Cuthbertson for the Independent. In the latest experiment, superheated plasma reached 126 million degrees Fahrenheit—that’s roughly five times hotter than the sun, which radiates a scorching 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit at the surface and about 27 million degrees Fahrenheit at its core.

Coal and natural gas are the primary energy sources currently used around the world, but these materials come in limited supply. Nuclear fusion could be the cleanest energy source available because it replicates the sun’s physics by merging atomic nuclei to generate large amounts of energy into electricity. The process requires no fossil fuels, leaves behind no radioactive waste, and is a safer alternative to fission nuclear power, per the Independent.

“The recent operation lays a solid scientific and experimental foundation towards the running of a fusion reactor,” says Gong Xianzu, a researcher at the Institute of Plasma Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, in a statement.

Jul 19, 2022

Avalanche Energy Funded to Developing Lunchbox Sized Micro Fusion Reactors

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, physics

Avalanche is a VC-backed, fusion energy start-up based in Seattle, WA. They are designing, testing and building micro-fusion reactors that you can hold in your hand. Their modular reactor design can be stacked for endless power applications and unprecedented energy density to provide clean energy and decarbonize the planet.

Avalanche is developing a 5kWe power pack called the “Orbitron” in a form-factor the size of a lunch pail. The unique physics of the Orbitron allows for its compact size which is a key enabler for development, scaling, and a wide variety of applications. Avalanche Energy uses electrostatic fields to trap fusion ions and also uses a magnetron electron confinement to reach higher ion densities. The resulting fusion reaction produces neutrons that can be transformed into heat.

The magnetron is a variation of a component in regular microwave ovens and the electrostatic base technology is a derivative of a product available from ThermoFisher Scientific, which is widely deployed for use in commercial mass spectrometry. They are taking two devices that exist already, things you can buy commercially for various applications. They are putting them together in a new interesting way at much higher voltages” to build a “recirculating beam fusion” prototype.

Jul 18, 2022

COLMENA, a new concept on lunar exploration

Posted by in categories: economics, nuclear energy, space

Live now, on the Space Renaissance YouTube channel.

We are stepping at the gates of a new era in space exploration, one which will finally incorporate the inner solar system to society’s daily life and economics. The first step is the Moon, and the asteroids will probably follow. The surface of those bodies presents special challenges for human and technological activities as well as resource exploitation. These challenges, which include regolith, extreme thermal amplitude, high energy radiation and surface mineral mixing among others, open the door to new operational approaches. COLMENA is the pathfinder of one such avenue: using swarms of micro-rovers for scientific exploration, resource prospection or, eventually, mining The first COLMENA mission will deploy 5 microrovers (56 grams each) on the Moon surface by the end of this year, flying on board a private spacecraft. In the talk I will briefly explain the context, technical characteristics and objectives of the mission, as well as its future.

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Jul 16, 2022

X-energy’s TRISO-X Fuel Fabrication Facility to Produce Fuel for Advanced Nuclear Reactors

Posted by in categories: economics, employment, nuclear energy

The TRISO-X, LLC Fuel Fabrication Facility (TF3) will be the nation’s first High-Assay, Low-Enriched Uranium (HALEU) fuel fabrication facility. TRISO-X is a wholly owned subsidiary of advanced reactor designer X-energy, LLC. TF3 will use uranium enriched between 5% and 20% to produce fuel for advanced and small modular reactors of the future. TF3 will manufacture TRi-structural ISOtropic (TRISO) fuel, an advanced fuel that is tough enough to handle the higher operating temperatures of several advanced reactors under development.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is supporting the development of TF3 through an award with X-energy, LLC under the Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program (ARDP) 0, which aims to speed the demonstration of advanced reactors through cost-shared partnerships with the U.S. nuclear industry. The design and license application development of TF3 was also supported through an $18M (federal cost share) industry FOA that was awarded to X-energy in 2018. TF3 will initially provide the TRISO fuel for X-energy’s Xe-100 high-temperature gas reactor.

“The TRISO-X Fuel Fabrication Facility represents the intersection of some of DOE’s hard work to bring advanced reactors to commercialization,” said Alice Caponiti, DOE’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Reactor Fleet and Advanced Reactor Deployment. “We’ve been investing in R&D on TRISO fuels for decades. Now, with funding through ARDP, TF3 will bring the next evolution of nuclear fuel to reality, advancing new nuclear technology, creating new jobs, and supporting the clean energy economy.”

Jul 16, 2022

Nuclear fusion gets closer to reality with this new reactor

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, space travel, sustainability

This article is an installment of The Future Explored, a weekly guide to world-changing technology. You can get stories like this one straight to your inbox every Thursday morning by subscribing here.

If nuclear fusion was a viable energy source, everything could be electrified. Electricity would be so cheap that projects that seem impossible now could be within our grasp, like commercial space flights, desalinating sea water, or direct air carbon capture.

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