48 seconds. I predict a glut of helium. balloons for everyone

      • @[email protected]
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        172 months ago

        In case the reference is lost, there’s a famous Muslim proverb: if the mountain won’t come to Muhammad, then Muhammad must go to the mountain. A flipped version of this proverb has somehow also become commonly known, perhaps surpassing the correct version (in my culture at least): if Muhammad won’t go to the mountain, then the mountain will come to Muhammad.

    • @AA5B
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      322 months ago

      Hotter than yo mama …. Wait a minute

      • rigatti
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        152 months ago

        Just barely though…

    • Cosmic Cleric
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      202 months ago

      People talk about Icarus flying too close to the sun. Motherfuckers are recreating it in labs

      This!

      That’s definitely some next-gen level magic being scienced/engineered.

    • @Plopp
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      152 months ago

      I just want to know what kind of thermometer they put into the plasma to measure the temperature. It must have been made of ice or something to not burn up.

      • @[email protected]
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        62 months ago

        They usually measure extreme high temperatures differently, not with thermometers based on heat expansion of materials. They measure heat radiated, not conducted.

        In plain English, they look at it with a heat camera, like you see on TV they patrol borders with.

    • @Harbinger01173430
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      82 months ago

      …Icarus was a primitive savage from ancient times…he didn’t have our cool cyberpunk tech

    • @ummthatguy
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      1002 months ago

      From what absolutely little I know, yes. Sustaining the reaction at such high temps for long is, as of now, difficult.

      • gregorum
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        722 months ago

        Yeah, I decided to actually bother and read the article. That’s why I made my edit. This sounds like a very important technical milestone for the development of fusion reactors. Hooray!

          • @fluxion
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            72 months ago

            This baby is gonna produce such amazing meth

    • @[email protected]
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      312 months ago

      when talking about fusion, just think the conditions of stars/the sun. In order to function correctly, it has to be ridiculously hot.

      The race for fusion is how to maintain it, and eventually have a net positive transaction of energy out, to energy in ratio.

      • @SlopppyEngineer
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        282 months ago

        just think the conditions of stars/the sun

        Hotter than the sun. The sun has an enormous gravity pushing things along. To compensate we use more heat.

        • @Lumisal
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          42 months ago

          I thought we used magnetrons and such, and the excessive heat was due to current inefficiency and control of the fusion process in containing the heat and it building up higher and higher.

          • @SlopppyEngineer
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            62 months ago

            The heat is needed so atoms collide enough to fuse without the high pressure inside a star. The trick is keeping the reaction going.

      • The Assman
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        72 months ago

        Stupid guy here, being ridiculously hot is the whole point right? Isn’t a fusion reactor just an extremely complex steam engine?

        • @[email protected]
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          162 months ago

          The difficult bit is to keep the fuel fusing. At the temperatures and pressures that are needed to get atoms to fuse together the whole lot wants to blow itself apart. Being able to reliability sustain the reaction for any length of time is a big achievement.

          Once we can get it to keep going, then yes, we can use the excess heat for power, although it’ll probably involve turbines rather than an old school steam engine type setup.

          • Cosmic Cleric
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            The difficult bit is to keep the fuel fusing.

            It’s moreso keeping it contained at those temperatures, so that it does not melt the container that it’s in, and potentially explode.

            There has to be some absolute next-level power backup to keep the containment field from failing.

            • @[email protected]
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              42 months ago

              Melting actually is not a seriously issue as while the plasma is very hot, it also has very little mass. Sparks are also ludicrously hot but with their little mass contain very little energy so pretty much anything but dry tinder is going to extinguish them before they can do any damage. You want to avoid loss of containment because you will have to clean the reactor vessel and maybe replace a couple of wall tiles but that kind of failure is far from catastrophic.

              Though of course with current designs the reactor walls do get hot because that’s how we intend to capture the energy: Pipe water through the walls to cool them, use the hot water to drive a couple of turbines. One of the holy grails to pine for after the current designs actually enter service is to look at ways to drive electrons in a wire directly from the plasma, no detour via heat. The other is aneutronic fusion.

              • Cosmic Cleric
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                One of the holy grails to pine for after the current designs actually enter service is to look at ways to drive electrons in a wire directly from the plasma, no detour via heat.

                That’s actually really interesting, as I never heard of that before.

                Yeah you’re absolutely right, damn that’d be one hell of a Holy Grail touchdown moment for Humanity if we could pull that off, the direct transference, no “middle man”.

                The other is aneutronic fusion.

                From the link (for others like me and did not know what the word meant)…

                Aneutronic fusion is any form of fusion power in which very little of the energy released is carried by neutrons.

                • @[email protected]
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                  22 months ago

                  I mean, in principle we can already do it: Fusion reactions tend to produce lots of electromagnetic radiation, and we can drive wires directly via electromagnetic radiation, the technology is called solar panels. Trouble being solar panels generally aren’t good at absorbing X-rays.

              • Cosmic Cleric
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                11 month ago

                Melting actually is not a seriously issue as while the plasma is very hot, it also has very little mass.

                Read the below from this article…

                One of the biggest obstacles to magnetic-confinement fusion is the need for materials that can withstand the tough treatment they’ll receive from the fusing plasma. In particular, deuterium-tritium fusion makes an intense flux of high-energy neutrons, which collide with the nuclei of atoms in the metal walls and cladding, causing tiny spots of melting. The metal then recrystallizes but is weakened, with atoms shifted from their initial positions. In the cladding of a typical fusion reactor, each atom might be displaced about 100 times over the reactor’s lifetime.

                • @[email protected]
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                  21 month ago

                  That’s not the plasma that melts anything but neutron bombardment. The containment and fizzling out issue is the same whether the plasma produces neutrons or just tons of EM radiation which is what I focussed on.

                  That sturdiness of the cladding things is an important factor when it comes to making cost-effective reactors, that is, the price you sell electricity for needs to cover replacement parts, but is not really that much of an issue when it comes to achieving fusion the materials we have are sufficient for that. Proxima Fusion (the Max Planck spinout) is working on those economical issues for their commercial prototype (early 2030), it remains to be seen whether they go for durable and expensive or cheap but needs to be replaced more often. Which isn’t unusual for power plants in general, none of them run 24/7 they get shut down for maintenance once in a while.

          • @[email protected]
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            52 months ago

            How are they even containing that heat as this is obviously warm enough to melt everything in existence (as far as I know)?

            • @[email protected]
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              vacuum for isolation. Magnets, so the plasma stays in the middle and won’t touch the walls. Microwaves to heat it up from the outside.

            • @[email protected]
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              42 months ago

              ELI5 would be huge magnets. If there is something that melts everything humanity ever created and knows of, keep it away from everything. But it is a real problem, instability in the plasma leads to the need for better materials.

        • @[email protected]
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          132 months ago

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_fusion

          The fusion of light elements up to a certain nucleus size releases energy. However, fusion only occurs at very high temperatures and pressures. The goal is to 1) create the conditions for nuclear fusion (which they did), 2) have the fusion reaction produce energy that sustains those conditions (they did for 48 seconds), and ideally a tiny bit more, 3) gather residual energy that isn’t critical to the reaction itself, which is the part that looks like a steam engine.

      • JackFrostNCola
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        22 months ago

        Sorry im not any sort of scientist here but i thought energy could not be created or destroyed so to get a net-positive energy out we would need to keep feeding in fuel, is this correct?
        And if so, how?

        • @[email protected]
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          51 month ago

          energy is not created nor destroyed, however something can change forms, which gives off energy.

          how stars work in fusion is that their high pressure and high temperatures allow for the fusion of particles. hydrogren (1 protonl fuses with another to produce helium (2 protons). in a stars life, that cycle continues. elements fuse till it hits iron (the end point of fusion). which then a stars life.is considered dead and eventually black hole stuff starts to happen due to density of star.

          the power is actually not “infinite” its limited by the fuel supply available (hydrogren), but the net energy in to energy out is positive if the fuel source exists.

          • JackFrostNCola
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            11 month ago

            Yes but how do you keep feeding this kind of reaction? I imagine you cant just drop more fuel ‘down a tube’. Do they shut down the reactor and then restart it with fresh material?

            • PennyJim
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              11 month ago

              I assume they shoot the fuel in with some light particle acceleration. Maybe they just let it diffuse in, but it’s a gas so it’s not that hard to get it to enter.

              The hope is they get the cost of maintaining the electromagnets (power and cooling) to be cheaper than the power we can extract from the reaction.

              My question is more about what’s the logistics of getting power out? We’re making a lot of heat, so it’s probably steam power at the heart of it, but a lot of this effort is to keep the heat in is it not?

        • @[email protected]
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          11 month ago

          I’m not an expert but I believe the fuel is hydrogen. Hydrogen atoms fuse together to produce helium + energy

  • @Gigan
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    1312 months ago

    I’d love to see an operating fusion reactor in my lifetime. Real sci-fi technology

    • @virku
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      1002 months ago

      Currently reading news and communicating with people around the world from the privacy of my toilet using my hand terminal. It can also understand what I am saying and excecute my spoken commands (to some extent at least). That’s some Sci fi shit right there. Pun intended

      • @agent_flounder
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        232 months ago

        It’s seriously insane growing up on star trek and then seeing it come to life.

        Still holding out for flying cars.

        And warp drive!

        • @Soggy
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          412 months ago

          I don’t want flying cars because I don’t want 95% of the people around me to be driving regular cars. Can’t even use a turn signal and now they have carte blanche to drive over houses and shit?

          The answer is mass transit. Mag-rail, not personal aviation.

          • @dual_sport_dork
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            342 months ago

            Yeah, motherfuckers can’t even drive in two dimensions. Adding a third would be a clusterfuck of galactic proportions.

        • @TurboDiesel
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          112 months ago

          I’m waiting for the post-scarcity stuff 😭

          • @dual_sport_dork
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            82 months ago

            The post-scarcity utopia only happens after the Eugenics Wars and that whole Khan thing, mind you…

        • Fubber Nuckin'
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          42 months ago

          Unfortunately the limiting factor on flying cars is the drivers. And the limiting factor on warp drive is the science not turning out to be a scam.

          I could see AI at least solving the former.

        • Cosmic Cleric
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          32 months ago

          And warp drive!

          I’d take a jump drive, if warp isn’t available.

          • Fubber Nuckin'
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            42 months ago

            You forget that technological progression is typically exponential as developed technologies each help to advance each other, and our collective base of theory grows. I also feel like machine learning can tip that curve a bit like it’s currently doing in things like protein research.

        • @[email protected]
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          I think VR + generative AI is a clear pathway to Star Trek’s holodecks. Imagine being able to just say “I want to play a game I’ve never played before, in an Amazonian rainforest”, and then the AI renders the game and environment for you in VR. We’re genuinely very close to that reality.

      • @fluxion
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        132 months ago

        Nice. Let’s use it for shit posting and spreading misinformation

        • @Ultragigagigantic
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          Same is true for the printing press.

          When will people understand that our tools are not the problem? It’s us!

      • Cosmic Cleric
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        62 months ago

        Currently reading news and communicating with people around the world from the privacy of my toilet

        That’s some Sci fi shit right there. Pun intended

        Well played, sir/madam. Well, played.

      • Transporter Room 3
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        52 months ago

        Wireless tablets were peak Sci fi at one point.

        Now we have the technology that I could make an e-ink reading tablet the size of a star trek TOS/TNG PADD, and it would probably have enough battery to last 6 months just because of all the extra space.

      • circuitfarmer
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        32 months ago

        I had this thought recently watching a video about the Apple Vision Pro. If I saw some corpo in Cyberpjnk 2077 using that exact device, I wouldn’t bat an eyelash.

        Do I want one? No. Is it from the future? Yes.

        • @AA5B
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          12 months ago

          I still find it a dream for the future.

          Do I want one? No. Do I want what it may turn into? I can’t wait to find out

    • @[email protected]
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      102 months ago

      Even if it’s not commercially available in the next 10 years or so, an actual sustained fusion reaction would change the world overnight. It’s crazy how