Our New Discovery: Nuclear Fusion

The Fusion Lab and Dr. John Smith on 5/8/16

Who is responsible?

Dr. John Smith at the Fusion lab, a lab that works primarily on research regarding new clean sources of energy, hit a break through yesterday, May 8, 2016. He and his team have finally figured out the secret to using nuclear fusion as an energy source and I, Dr. Sadie Emch, a fellow scientist at Fusion lab, believe it is important for the world at large to hear about this. Scientists have been working for years trying to solve the mystery of how to harness the enormous amount of energy that is created by nuclear fusion to use for our energy needs. The important discovery has finally been made by Dr. John Smith and this is incredible!

How does it work? How is it different?

Fusion is the process which powers the sun and the stars and that makes all life on earth possible. It is called 'fusion' because the energy is produced by fusing together light atoms, such as hydrogen, at the extremely high pressures and temperatures which exist at the center of the sun. At the high temperatures experienced in the sun any gas becomes plasma, the fourth state of matter. In order to replicate this process on earth, gases need to be heated to extremely high temperatures of about 150 million degrees ºC. The fusion reaction that is easiest to accomplish is the reaction between two hydrogen isotopes: deuterium, extracted from water and tritium, produced during the fusion reaction through contact with lithium. When deuterium and tritium nuclei fuse, they form a helium nucleus, a neutron and a lot of energy. More simply fusion produces energy when two nuclei collide to form one nucleus and some energy which is different from how nuclear fission produces energy, one nucleus splits to form multiple nuclei and some energy.

Safety Concerns and Precautions

The largest safety concern when it comes to this discovery is that in order for fusion to be carried out on Earth there needs to be extremely high temperatures, millions of degrees. Working with these types of temperatures can be extremely dangerous and all people working with and near these types of temperatures must exert extreme caution at all times in order for the process to be safe.

The Economic Impact

The greatest increase in demand for energy will come from developing countries where, with rapid urbanization, large-scale electricity generation will be required. With environmental requirements for zero or low CO emission sources fusion will be an important energy source. The current energy market relies mostly on oil and increasingly natural gas and countries with these resources have huge economic benefits. With the discovery that has just been made everyone can have access to fusion as an energy source which will completely change the world economy. The technology is rare now and so it is expensive but as time goes on this technology will lower in price and completely alter the world economy because everyone can have access to a great amount of clean energy.