Archive for the ‘nuclear energy’ category: Page 9

Feb 10, 2024

Nuclear fusion lab sets record for most energy created with single reaction

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

Though we’re still a ways off from generating usable energy this way, the result shows promise for the field.

Feb 9, 2024

Faulty DNA disposal system found to cause inflammation

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, genetics, life extension, nuclear energy

Cells in the human body contain power-generating mitochondria, each with their own mtDNA—a unique set of genetic instructions entirely separate from the cell’s nuclear DNA that mitochondria use to create life-giving energy. When mtDNA remains where it belongs (inside of mitochondria), it sustains both mitochondrial and cellular health—but when it goes where it doesn’t belong, it can initiate an immune response that promotes inflammation.

Now, Salk scientists and collaborators at UC San Diego have discovered a novel mechanism used to remove improperly functioning mtDNA from inside to outside the mitochondria. When this happens, the mtDNA gets flagged as foreign DNA and activates a normally used to promote to rid the cell of pathogens, like viruses.

The findings, published in Nature Cell Biology, offer many new targets for therapeutics to disrupt the inflammatory pathway and therefore mitigate inflammation during aging and diseases, like lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.

Feb 9, 2024

First Nuclear Plasma Control with Digital Twin

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, open access

Nuclear fusion is a great idea, in principle. In principle, it could solve the energy worries of the world beautifully. The problem is that whenever we’ve tried, getting nuclear fusion to work takes up more energy than it creates. But a team from Japan and the United States just got us a bit closer to our dream of clean energy. They recently succeeded in controlling nuclear plasma in a stellarator by creating a virtual twin. What’s a stellarator, what is digital twin and what did they actually do? Let’s have a look.

The new paper is here:

Continue reading “First Nuclear Plasma Control with Digital Twin” »

Feb 7, 2024

Bill Gates’ TerraPower joins shipbuilders for nuclear-powered ships

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

Core Power, HD Hyundai, TerraPower, and Southern Company collaborate on nuclear power for shipping, focusing on small modular reactor (SMR) technology.

Feb 7, 2024

Nuclear-powered spacecraft: why dreams of atomic rockets are back on

Posted by in categories: military, nuclear energy, particle physics, space travel

Launching rockets into space with atomic bombs is a crazy idea that was thankfully discarded many decades ago. But as Richard Corfield discovers, the potential of using the energy from nuclear-powered engines to drive space travel is back on NASA’s agenda.

In 1914 H G Wells published The World Set Free, a novel based on the notion that radium might one day power spaceships. Wells, who was familiar with the work of physicists such as Ernest Rutherford, knew that radium could produce heat and envisaged it being used to turn a turbine. The book might have been a work of fiction, but The World Set Free correctly foresaw the potential of what one might call “atomic spaceships”

The idea of using nuclear energy for space travel took hold in the 1950s when the public – having witnessed the horrors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki – gradually became convinced of the utility of nuclear power for peaceful purposes. Thanks to programmes such as America’s Atoms for Peace, people began to see that nuclear power could be used for energy and transport. But perhaps the most radical application lay in spaceflight.

Feb 6, 2024

Nuclear fusion reaction releases almost twice the energy put in

Posted by in category: nuclear energy

The US National Ignition Facility has achieved even higher energy yields since breaking even for the first time in 2022, but a practical fusion reactor is still a long way off.

By Matthew Sparkes

Jan 29, 2024

Research reveals quantum entanglement among quarks

Posted by in categories: computing, nuclear energy, particle physics, quantum physics

Collisions of high energy particles produce “jets” of quarks, anti-quarks, or gluons. Due to the phenomenon called confinement, scientists cannot directly detect quarks. Instead, the quarks from these collisions fragment into many secondary particles that can be detected.

Scientists recently addressed jet production using quantum simulations. They found that the propagating jets strongly modify the quantum vacuum—the with the lowest possible energy. In addition, the produced quarks retain quantum entanglement, the linkage between particles across distances. This finding, published in Physical Review Letters, means that scientists can now study this entanglement in experiments.

This research performed that have detected the modification of the vacuum by the propagating jets. The simulations have also revealed quantum entanglement among the jets. This entanglement can be detected in nuclear experiments. The work is also a step forward in quantum-inspired classical computing. It may result in the creation of new application-specific integrated circuits.

Jan 26, 2024

Nobel laureate to build rapid-fire laser-powered nuclear fusion reactor by 2030

Posted by in categories: computing, nuclear energy

Nakamura, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for his pioneering work on the development of blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs), believes that his company can harness their semiconductor expertise to create a secure pathway for achieving nuclear fusion and transforming it into a commercially viable venture.

The precise details of the approach remain undisclosed as Blue Laser Fusion currently has a pending patent.

However, Nakamura is confident in the feasibility of constructing rapid-fire lasers and envisions the establishment of a one-gigawatt generating reactor in either Japan or the US by the end of the decade. Prior to that milestone, the company intends to construct a small-scale experimental plant in Japan before the conclusion of the next year, as reported by Nikkei.

Jan 24, 2024

Liquid lithium on the walls of a fusion device helps the plasma within maintain a hot edge

Posted by in categories: nuclear energy, particle physics

Emerging research suggests it may be easier to use fusion as a power source if liquid lithium is applied to the internal walls of the device housing the fusion plasma.

Plasma, the fourth state of matter, is a hot gas made of electrically charged particles. Scientists at the Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) are working on solutions to efficiently harness the power of fusion to offer a cleaner alternative to fossil fuels, often using devices called tokamaks, which confine plasma using magnetic fields.

“The purpose of these devices is to confine the energy,” said Dennis Boyle, a staff research physicist at PPPL. “If you had much better energy confinement, you could make the machines smaller and less expensive. That would make the whole thing a lot more practical, and cost-effective so that governments and industry want to invest more in it.”

Jan 18, 2024

Fusion Research Advances: New Views on Energetic Ion Flow

Posted by in categories: computing, nuclear energy, space

New observations at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility offer vital insights into energetic ions in fusion plasmas, key for fusion power development and space plasma understanding, with implications for satellite technology.

In a burning plasma, maintaining confinement of fusion-produced energetic ions is essential to producing energy. These fusion plasmas host a wide array of electromagnetic waves that can push energetic ions out of the plasma. This reduces the heating of the plasma from fusion reaction products and ends the burning plasma state.

Recent measurements at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility provide the first direct observations of energetic ions moving through space and energy in a tokamak. Researchers combined these measurements with advanced computer models of electromagnetic waves and how they interact with energetic ions. The results provide an improved understanding of the interplay between plasma waves and energetic ions in fusion plasmas.

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