Professor José Luis González Díez from the Higher Technical School of Naval Engineering of the UPM has recently patented a prototype of a new clean fusion reactor. The invention has a laser ignition of 1000 MWe and uses hydrogen isotopes extracted from water as fuel.
It is a well known fact that nuclear fission holds contaminant risks of radioactive waste, generated during the electricity producing process. The risk perception of nuclear fission power generation was increased even further after the events in Fukushima in 2011.
In addition, nuclear fusion has been studied extensively over the past decade as an alternative to nuclear fission, mainly due to its security and cost. Nevertheless, currently there is no single operational fusion reactor. These are the reasons that encouraged Professor González Díez to search for alternative ways to obtain energy.
Under the Project “Fusion Power”, the scientist designed a prototype of a fusion reactor, which has a fusion chamber that adapts to different types of fuel including deuterium-tritium, deuterium- deuterium or hydrogen-hydrogen. Depending on the type of fuel, the size and the shape of the chamber can be modified, so as the outer and inner equipment, coolants, moderators, shields and equipment of ignition.
Another product of the same project is the design of a molecular structure that can realize coupling of various fusion reactors. It allows determining the specific features of a fusion reactor so that it can be used in nuclear powered ships. Additionally, putting this structure into practice will help meeting the high energy demands, by optimizing the power production.
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Join the Discussion4046 total comments so far. What's your opinion ?
From what I see in the short post, Prof. Diez 'invention' is nothing but a naive fantasy. Thermonuclear fusion for civilian application has proven a lot harder to achieve than the early scientists in the fifties believed. There is so little detail that it's hard to criticise. It seems to be a version of inertial fusion, where a fuel (e.g. deuterium & tritium) is ignited using lasers. The US and France have such experimental facilities, which are far from producing useful power. These are not small, see https://lasers.llnl.gov/ . Even if at that scale, if it did work, you wouldn't want an engine the size of a large factory to power a ship!
1. Does it work in practice?
2. What does this mean? 'It allows determining the specific features of a fusion reactor so that it can be used in nuclear powered ships.'