12 thoughts on “The Fusion Constant”

  1. According to a non-paywalled secondary source reporting on the Financial Times story here.

    produced about 2.5 megajoules of energy, which was about 120 per cent of the 2.1 megajoules of energy in the lasers, the people with knowledge of the results said, adding that the data was still being analysed.

    Probably a scale-up of the experiment described here

  2. I wonder, if there’s a catch, what it is?
    Your reactor vessel when operated long enough eventually becomes brittle to the point of worthlessness and as an added side benefit it is lethally radioactive?

    Beyond breakeven there will still be the need for serious engineering to make it practical.

  3. Hey Rand, I have a question. And you might want to write an article about this. What will Green Peace say, once we have cheap fusion power? I know they will be against it. But what will the reasons be, that they will tell to the media?
    Anybody would take a guess on what Green Peace, or other environmental groups will say.

    1. Heat death of the planet. The Earth will not be able to radiate enough of the fusion generated heat energy out into space and we will all die from climate change a bad case of the vapors…

      1. To be technically correct that should have said fusion supplied heat energy. There have already been papers written about it in the journals. The presumably bad number however, is way, way above where we are now.

        But in a hat tip to the 1950’s we haven’t even begun to explore adding heat radiating fins to the Earth….

      2. IIRC in Larry Niven’s scifi the Puppeteers, an advanced civilization, moved their planet away from its star to deal with this effect…

        1. Didn’t they also move their home world to a star outside of the Galactic Plane to avoid collisions?

  4. I used to know a guy who worked for TRW and they did some studies on fusion. For commercial fusion they concluded you need 10X to 100X output compared to input.
    One way is to wrap the fusion reactor in a U238 blanket and harvest the plutonium.
    With a fair bit of engineering this could apply to Farnsworth Fusors so there’s your Greenpeace objection – Proliferation.

    1. Oh and Rand, as to your point in the OP. As far as I can tell, given the experimental setup used, the constant is still holding at 20.

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