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Archive for the ‘nuclear energy’ category

Apr 13, 2018

What is relativity? Einstein’s mind-bending theory explained

Posted by in categories: information science, nuclear energy

Albert Einstein is famous for his theory of relativity, and GPS navigation and nuclear energy would be impossible without the equation e=mc2.

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Apr 7, 2018

How AI and Machine Learning Are Redefining Cybersecurity

Posted by in categories: business, cybercrime/malcode, mobile phones, nuclear energy, robotics/AI, transportation

We are now a connected global community where many digital natives cannot remember a time before the iPhone. The rise of smart homes means that we are increasingly attaching our lighting, door locks, cameras, thermostats, and even toasters to our home networks. Managing our home automation through mobile apps or our voice illustrates how far we have evolved over the last few years.

However, in our quest for the cool and convenient, many have not stopped to consider their cybersecurity responsibilities. The device with the weakest security could allow hackers to exploit vulnerabilities on our network and access our home. But this is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

Businesses and even governments are starting to face up to the vulnerabilities of everything being online. Sophisticated and disruptive cyberattacks are continuing to increase in complexity and scale across multiple industries. Areas of our critical infrastructure such as energy, nuclear, water, aviation, and critical manufacturing have vulnerabilities that make them a target for cybercriminals and even a state-sponsored attack.

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Apr 1, 2018

Lockheed Martin Receives Patent For ‘World Changing’ Fusion Reactor

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, transportation

CBS Local — Lockheed Martin has reportedly been working on a revolutionary new type of reactor that can power anything from cities to aircraft carriers.

The Maryland-based defense contractor recently received a patent for the compact fusion reactor (CFR) after filing plans for the device in 2014. According to reports, one generator would be as small as a shipping container but produce the energy to power 80,000 homes or one of the U.S. Navy’s Nimitz-class carriers.

Lockheed’s advanced projects division, Skunk Works, has reportedly been working on the futuristic power source since 2014 and claimed at the time that a CFR could be ready for production by 2019.

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Mar 29, 2018

Research enhances performance of Germany’s new fusion device

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, physics

A team of U.S. and German scientists has used a system of large magnetic “trim” coils designed and delivered by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) to achieve high performance in the latest round of experiments on the Wendelstein 7-X (W7-X) stellarator. The German machine, the world’s largest and most advanced stellarator, is being used to explore the scientific basis for fusion energy and test the suitability of the stellarator design for future fusion power plants. Such plants would use fusion reactions such as those that power the sun to create an unlimited energy source on Earth.

The new experiments amply demonstrated the ability of the five copper trim coils and their sophisticated control system, whose operation is led on-site by PPPL physicist Samuel Lazerson, to improve the overall performance of the W7-X. “What’s exciting about this is that the trim coils and Sam’s leadership are producing scientific understanding that will help to optimize future stellarators,” said PPPL physicist Hutch Neilson, who oversees the laboratory’s collaboration on the W7-X with the Max Planck Institute of Plasma Physics, which built the machine and now hosts the international team investigating the behavior of plasmas confined in its unique magnetic configuration.

Stellarators are twisty, doughnut-shaped facilities whose configuration contrasts with the smoothly doughnut-shaped facilities called tokamaks that are more widely used. A major advantage of stellarators is their ability to operate continuously with low input power to sustain the plasma without plasma disruptions—a risk that tokamaks face—enabling the facilities to operate efficiently in steady state. A disadvantage is that the twisting geometry is more complex to design and build.

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Mar 27, 2018

Lockheed Martin Now Has a Patent For Its Potentially World Changing Fusion Reactor

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

When it first announced the project, the company said it could have a working prototype of the revolutionary power source as early as 2019.

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Mar 25, 2018

Work halted for 10 days when loose bolt is found in San Onofre radioactive waste canister

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

Works crews transferring spent fuel at the San Onofre nuclear plant from cooling pools into dry storage discovered a loose bolt inside one of the canisters, prompting Southern California Edison to temporarily halt the relocation effort. The job resumed earlier this week.

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Mar 18, 2018

Russian Scientists Are Devising a Plan to Nuke Asteroids

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, physics, space

You may have thought, “Hey, if we’re threatened by an incoming asteroid, we should just nuke it!” You’re not alone: a team of Russian scientists are working on a plot to do so, by detonating miniature asteroids in a lab.

In fact, several groups of researchers are now toying with the idea of asteroid nuking for the sake of planetary defense. The Russian team has even calculated about how much firepower they’d need to perform such a feat.

According to the translated paper published in the Journal of Experimental and Theoretical Physics: “Given the scale factor and the results of laboratory experiments, the undeniable destruction of a chondritic asteroid 200 m in diameter by a nuclear explosion with an energy above 3 Mt was shown to be possible.”

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Mar 17, 2018

Scientists zap tiny wires with lasers to create mini-nuclear fusion

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, nuclear energy

A step towards limitless energy? reactions at record efficiency…


Researchers from Colorado State University’s (CSU) Advanced Beam Laboratory used a compact but powerful laser they built from scratch to heat tiny, invisible wires, known as nanowires.

These contained a source of deuterium, one of two stable isotopes of hydrogen and a common source of fuel for nuclear fusion reactions.

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Mar 15, 2018

Nanowire-zapping lasers unlock micro-scale nuclear fusion efficiency record

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, nuclear energy, particle physics

Researchers at Colorado State University (CSU) have broken the efficiency record for nuclear fusion on the micro-scale. Using an ultra-fast, high-powered tabletop laser, the team’s results were about 500 times more efficient than previous experiments. The key to that success is the target material: instead of a flat piece of polymer, the researchers blasted arrays of nanowires to create incredibly hot, dense plasmas.

We have nuclear fusion to thank for our very existence – without it, the Sun wouldn’t have fired up in the first place. Inside that inferno, hydrogen atoms are crushed and through a series of chain reactions, eventually form helium. In the process, tremendous amounts of energy are released. Theoretically, if we can harness that phenomenon we could produce an essentially unlimited supply of clean energy, and although breakthroughs have been made in recent years, nuclear fusion energy remains tantalizingly out of reach.

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Mar 13, 2018

View on Nuclear Fusion: a Moment of Truth

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, physics

Fusion technology promises an inexhaustible supply of clean, safe power. If it all sounds too good to be true, that’s because it is. For decades scientists struggled to recreate a working sun in their laboratories – little surprise perhaps as they were attempting to fuse atomic nuclei in a superheated soup. Commercial fusion remains a dream. Yet in recent years the impossible became merely improbable and then, it felt almost overnight, technically feasible. For the last decade there has been a flurry of interest –and not a little incredulity –about claims, often made by companies backed by billionaires and run by bold physicists, that market-ready fusion reactors were just around the corner.


Until recently the attractions and drawbacks of nuclear fusion reactors were largely theoretical. Within a decade this will not be the case.

Mon 12 Mar 2018 14.24 EDT Last modified on Mon 12 Mar 2018 19.15 EDT.

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