A new generation of thermonuclear energy plant is being built in the USA

Helion Energy has reached a key fusion milestone and announced that this is the temperature at which it will

operate a commercial reactor. In the meantime, durability tests confirm the reliability of the system.

A Helion Energy spokesman told the EE Times thatEngineering efficiency is key to Helion's approach. “We're converting fusion energy directly into electricity, which means we don't need 'ignition' and we can produce clean electricity at much lower net energy values. Our problems now are primarily engineering problems, not scientific problems. "

Helion Energy uses a pulse systemfusion, which keeps the fusion device small and enables flexible power generation. It uses deuterium and helium-3 (D-³He) as fuel.

Helion Energy Helion's Trenta prototypeEnergy combined and compressed high beta reverse configuration (FRC) deuterium plasma under fusion conditions, reaching a total plasma temperature of 9 keV (over 100,000,000 ° C). In 2018, his fifth-generation prototype created magnetic fields of 7 T and reached an ion temperature of 2 keV at high density.

There is fuel inside the Helion Energy deviceheats up to extreme temperatures to form a plasma, which is then magnetically held in a form that the company calls a field-reversed configuration (FRC). Two FRCs form at opposite ends of the accelerator and then collide with each other at 1.6 million km / h using magnets to create an impressive collision at the center.

Here they are further compressed withpowerful magnets and heat up until they reach a temperature of 100,000,000 ° C, causing deuterium and helium-3 to fuse together to form an expanding plasma that repels a magnetic field to induce a current that can be collected as electricity.

Like everyone else working on the nuclearfusion, Helion Energy aims to reach the break-even point of fusion energy, at which the system produces more energy than it needs to run. This will be a key challenge when the company eventually begins operations at its new facility in Everett, Washington, which it says will provide about 150 jobs.

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