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Suicidesoldier#1's avatar

Fanatical Zealot

So, I'm aware that energy producing fusion takes place with light atoms, such as hydrogen, or even lithium, all the way up to iron or so. I've even seen some ideas for boron; But I haven't seen much fusion of things like say, chlorine, or potassium, and even with things like boron they always seem much, much more outlandish options.

From my understanding they simply produce less power; but would it take less power to start, as well? Even if well under hydrogen fusion it could theoretically go on to power hydrogen fusion which, being self sustaining, could go on to make more fusion reactors etc. until we have a big one capable of powering a lot of stuff, making smaller ones for space ships, starting up ones that go out etc.


I know there's something I'm missing but fusion of said lighter elements just isn't really talked about that much.

Obviously, isomers of heavier elements from lighter elements are possible candidates for fuel as well, but I just don't know the value or the feasibility and practically of it in comparison. xp
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.
Amy Reinvented's avatar

Kindly Seeker

Are you talking about for the purposes of, say, energy generation? In that case, I think they focus mostly on hydrogen because it's the most efficient. When fusing heavier elements, you need to put a lot of energy into the system, and while you do get more out, it's generally not worth it.

That, and probably because hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe. xp
Heavier atoms require additional energy in ionization as well as overcoming the electrostatic barrier between the nucli. In addition, tunneling, which is an important part of fusion, becomes less likely with mass.

All of this adds up to higher initial costs and lower gains.
chainmailleman's avatar

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Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.
chainmailleman
Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.

Your first point is wrong. The sun has additional "free" pressure put onto it by gravity which is a massive part of it's energy input. We don't have this, hence the statement "It takes more energy than we can get out of it."
chainmailleman
Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.
Keyword we.
To much heat for us to handle in 'full scale'.
It requires fuel that isn't conventional, it will be expensive to consistantly produce.
chainmailleman's avatar

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Vannak
chainmailleman
Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.

Your first point is wrong. The sun has additional "free" pressure put onto it by gravity which is a massive part of it's energy input. We don't have this, hence the statement "It takes more energy than we can get out of it."


You have got to be kidding. But since I know you from other topics, thats not reality. And since no matter what I post, you stay in the same little indoctrinated mind-set. Any argument with you, therefore, is a waste of time and effort.
chainmailleman's avatar

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chainmailleman
Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.
Keyword we.
To much heat for us to handle in 'full scale'.
It requires fuel that isn't conventional, it will be expensive to consistantly produce.


If you go to Fusor.net you will see that many fusioneers use electrolysis to extract and utilize hydrogen. Or you can buy a bottle of Deuterium for the price of filling up a large SUV full of gasoline. Fusion is very practical as even high school students have accomplished this task. Farnsworth's own reactor self-sustained for a considerable period of time. Multipactor tubes are the foundation.

By full scale you mean that oversized magnetic particle accelerator in Europe that has yet to do anything that hasn't already been done in laboratory sized magnetic accelerators? Scale has nothing to do with anything. Whether it's 2 atoms, or 10 trillion, the effects remain constant.
chainmailleman
Vannak
chainmailleman
Disconsented
There are 3 problems with using fusion that I know of:
1) It takes more energy to start than we can get out of it
2) The amount of heat it requires for anything other than a sliver (tarus reactor or something like that).
3) It requires constant fuel to keep going.


1: If this were the case, our sun wouldn't work.

2: What? It generates heat. This is why Farnsworth's reactor had it's electrodes melt after 5 minutes.

3: So does everything else. Your car for example.

Your first point is wrong. The sun has additional "free" pressure put onto it by gravity which is a massive part of it's energy input. We don't have this, hence the statement "It takes more energy than we can get out of it."


You have got to be kidding. But since I know you from other topics, thats not reality. And since no matter what I post, you stay in the same little indoctrinated mind-set. Any argument with you, therefore, is a waste of time and effort.
You do know that, using the word indoctrinated and saying no argument would change your mind doesn't make you right?

I don't even know what you're arguing here. All I said what that the sun's fusion is aided by gravitational pressure (As demonstrated by the Hindenburg burning, not exploding in a fusion disaster) and that we don't have the technology to extract enough energy out of fusion (as demonstrated by the fact that... we don't use fusion?)
Suicidesoldier#1's avatar

Fanatical Zealot

Man, so an isomer of krypton fusion is really just a pipe dream then D:

Is there anyway it's more practical, such as with a lower starting temperature, or being more "unstable" and likely to fuse etc.


The problem with hydrogen fusion seems to be we can't get the pressure or temperature high enough to start fusion on a large enough piece of mass with the precision that's required of lasers.

But if we threw some stuff in there, that was already releasing all kinds of energy, to start up fusion instead of having to use super lasers, it might be a good enough catalysts to start one reaction, which could then go on to use raw fusing 600 million degree fuel as an ember so to speak to light up more fusion reactors around the world and back up ones and whatnot etc.


We make a small one, transport it to a larger one, throw some of the blazing hot fuel in there etc.

All you have to do is keep adding fuel and it would be self sustaining; in case one went out, you could use another and siphon off a small amount of blazing hot material to start the next one etc.


Of course we'd still need something like thermally conductive graphene that could transport heat nearly as fast as electricity to keep the thing from exploding or melting and still be economical but.

It would be a start. : P
MachineMuse's avatar

Friendly Lunatic

Vannak
Your first point is wrong. The sun has additional "free" pressure put onto it by gravity which is a massive part of it's energy input. We don't have this, hence the statement "It takes more energy than we can get out of it."

Wrong. Hydrogen fusion bombs, anyone?

The only struggle with a fusion reactor is to keep it under control in a way that still produces a net gain of useful energy.
Suicidesoldier#1
Man, so an isomer of krypton fusion is really just a pipe dream then D:

Is there anyway it's more practical, such as with a lower starting temperature, or being more "unstable" and likely to fuse etc.


The problem with hydrogen fusion seems to be we can't get the pressure or temperature high enough to start fusion on a large enough piece of mass with the precision that's required of lasers.

But if we threw some stuff in there, that was already releasing all kinds of energy, to start up fusion instead of having to use super lasers, it might be a good enough catalysts to start one reaction, which could then go on to use raw fusing 600 million degree fuel as an ember so to speak to light up more fusion reactors around the world and back up ones and whatnot etc.


We make a small one, transport it to a larger one, throw some of the blazing hot fuel in there etc.

All you have to do is keep adding fuel and it would be self sustaining; in case one went out, you could use another and siphon off a small amount of blazing hot material to start the next one etc.

Maybe, but think about it this way: any heat 'wasted' on fusing helium atoms into lithium or whatever is heat we might have been able to extract in the form of useful energy if only we had more hydrogen to spend it on instead.

There's probably an equilibrium point farther down the periodic table from iron that is the optimum for some function of re-using fuel while also extracting the maximum heat.
Suicidesoldier#1's avatar

Fanatical Zealot

MachineMuse
Vannak
Your first point is wrong. The sun has additional "free" pressure put onto it by gravity which is a massive part of it's energy input. We don't have this, hence the statement "It takes more energy than we can get out of it."

Wrong. Hydrogen fusion bombs, anyone?

The only struggle with a fusion reactor is to keep it under control in a way that still produces a net gain of useful energy.
Suicidesoldier#1
Man, so an isomer of krypton fusion is really just a pipe dream then D:

Is there anyway it's more practical, such as with a lower starting temperature, or being more "unstable" and likely to fuse etc.


The problem with hydrogen fusion seems to be we can't get the pressure or temperature high enough to start fusion on a large enough piece of mass with the precision that's required of lasers.

But if we threw some stuff in there, that was already releasing all kinds of energy, to start up fusion instead of having to use super lasers, it might be a good enough catalysts to start one reaction, which could then go on to use raw fusing 600 million degree fuel as an ember so to speak to light up more fusion reactors around the world and back up ones and whatnot etc.


We make a small one, transport it to a larger one, throw some of the blazing hot fuel in there etc.

All you have to do is keep adding fuel and it would be self sustaining; in case one went out, you could use another and siphon off a small amount of blazing hot material to start the next one etc.

Maybe, but think about it this way: any heat 'wasted' on fusing helium atoms into lithium or whatever is heat we might have been able to extract in the form of useful energy if only we had more hydrogen to spend it on instead.

There's probably an equilibrium point farther down the periodic table from iron that is the optimum for some function of re-using fuel while also extracting the maximum heat.


Yeah, but if it could start as a catalyst that would be awesome. : P
MachineMuse's avatar

Friendly Lunatic

Suicidesoldier#1
Yeah, but if it could start as a catalyst that would be awesome. : P

But if it's unnecessary... :/
Suicidesoldier#1's avatar

Fanatical Zealot

MachineMuse
Suicidesoldier#1
Yeah, but if it could start as a catalyst that would be awesome. : P

But if it's unnecessary... :/


Well, the issue being, is it easier to start, lower temperatures etc. even if lower energy gains.

The difficulty of initiating hydrogen fusion with lasers is so extreme it would be great if other options were available. xp

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