A spherical tokamak type nuclear fusion experimental device ``ST40'' achieves a temperature 6 times higher than the center of the sun and the paper is published
An ion temperature exceeding 100 million degrees has been achieved with the experimental fusion device ' ST40 ', which adopts a method called 'tokamak type' and is characterized by its small size and spherical shape, and a related paper has been published. It is the first time that a temperature of 100 million degrees, which is an important milestone in a fusion reactor, has been achieved in a spherical tokamak.
Achievement of ion temperatures in excess of 100 million degrees Kelvin in the compact high-field spherical tokamak ST40 - IOPscience
Spherical Tokamak Achieves Crucial Plasma Temperatures - EE Times
In nuclear fusion reactors, which use nuclear fusion reactions, a method called magnetic confinement, which confines ultra-high-temperature plasma , is attracting attention as a next-generation technology. In the magnetic confinement method, a coil is wound in a donut shape and current is passed through, confining the plasma in the generated magnetic field.
In these nuclear fusion reactors, plasma can be created by heating deuterium and tritium, which are types of hydrogen, to a temperature higher than the center of the sun. In the tokamak type, the heated plasma is confined in a ring-shaped device called a 'tokamak' using a powerful magnet, and the nuclear fusion reaction continues to generate energy.
The tokamak-type small high-field spherical device 'ST40' is not nearly spherical, but rather elongated like an apple. Being spherical has advantages such as improving stability, and it is expected to generate high-quality plasma at a lower cost than the existing donut-shaped shape.
According to a paper newly written and published after this ST40 achieved a temperature of 100 million degrees (8.6 KeV), an ion temperature of 5 keV or higher has never been achieved in a spherical tokamak so far. It was said that it was achieved only in large-scale equipment with high plasma heating power. In addition, it can be said that it is a great success as the first example of proving the possibility that a small high-field spherical tokamak type can achieve the appropriate temperature required for commercial nuclear fusion that adopts the magnetic confinement method.
“We have 10 years of experience in tokamak design, construction, operation and validation, and have achieved record results with tokamak,” said Steven McNamara, science director at Tokamak Energy, which developed the ST40. However, there are still technologies to be invented and challenges to be overcome.With the support of major powers, power plants using tokamak-type fusion reactors will be realized in the 2030s.'
``One kilogram of fusion fuel releases the same energy as burning about 10 million kilograms of coal. As part of a more net-zero future, it can complement rather than compete with other renewables,” he said of the future of fusion.