Thursday, April 03, 2008

A Fusion Future?

In this excellent entry in the always-readable Cosmic Log, Alan Boyle brings us up to date on the state of fusion research and the various avenues being pursued in an effort to create an energy-generating (and controlled, of course) thermonuclear reaction. The biggest effort is the ITER program, involving the U.S. and six other nations in an effort to build a reactor in France to achieve this goal. Commercial power generation, as Boyle notes, is still some decades off.
COMMENT: We are not going to solve all the needs of an industrial world with the localized resources of solar-electric and wind energy. Something has to replace the coal, oil, and nuclear fission power plants to run cities and industries. Fusion is the only option that looks feasible (not guaranteed, and costly to develop, but feasible). It needs continued - and expanded - support.


M. Simon said...

Re-read the article for the Bussard Fusion stuff. It doesn't get much space but, it may bring in the fusion revolution sooner than every one thinks.

Matt Bille said...

Thanks, I'll do that.

Matt Bille said...

The article on the Bussard fusion approach indicates that this novel idea is being pursued on a small scale and might - just might - have a big payoff, although some physicists are skeptical. See: