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Clean low cost hydrogen boron fusion and impact on environment

Bobfitz1

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Sep 24, 2012
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LPPFusions Wefunder campaign closes tonight at midnight.
LPPFusion | Cheap, safe, and clean energy generator: the power of the sun recreated on Earth | Wefunder
The total is nearing 900K from over 400 small investors willing to fund a fusion approach with unmistakeable advantages over others, as the Wefunder video explains. This capital will make it possible to run experiments in the next 12 months which may make it clear if dense plasma focus machines coupled with hydrogen boron fuel have a path to achieving net fusion energy in the next few years. Or not. Let's enable the physics to determine if it can work or not.
 
@Bobfitz1 said:
"a much lower cost alternative is still needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change the are predicted."



Actually what I wrote is absolutely supported by the facts. Atmospheric CO2 reached and passed 400 ppm just last year. The rate at which more CO2 is emitted is so high that the ppm goes up over 2 ppm each year. Look for articles on just how long it will take renewables to even halve CO2 emissions. It is understood that they won't fully replace fossil fuels until 2040 or 2050.
So under the best scenarios CO2 won't level off until it hits 430 to 440 ppm. Environmental advocates like Bill McKibben and 360.org believe 350 ppm is the highest CO2 level that will avoid major damage from warming temperatures.

No one supporting LPP remotely suggests it's not vital that the world go full speed ahead with renewables. That is all that can be done to start slowing down CO2 and global warming right now. But knowing that the best those can do still leaves disastrous consequences from global warming, it's irresponsible not to fund an approach that has even a small chance to develop a technology that might stop levels from increasing 10 or 20 years sooner and thereby reduce somewhat the eventual temperature increases. The more viable solutions in the toolkit the better. It's not renewables or cheap fusion. Ideally it would be taking advantage of all solutions to get the job done... and fast as possible.
I agree that we need to work on all possible solutions because the actual course needed may require all of them. That said, I have noticed that fusion has been 5 to 10 years off since I first started reading about it in the 1960s. Billions (yes, with a "B") have been spent. The nightmare scenario might be a Manhattan Project that costs billions or trillions, ending up with a system that is working (and therefore there is a lot of vested interest in keeping it going) but has enormous down-sides as well (nuclear waste, large water requirements, large land footprint, etc., or whatever it happens to be, like with fission). I can't help but think that if fusion (i.e., with net positive energy output) was possible with a reasonable level of effort (i.e., not break the bank), we should have found it by now...I'm just sayin'....
 
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Dutchie

Active Member
Jun 9, 2013
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??? If solar and wind are already cheaper than fossil fuels then why would we 'need' cheaper alternatives?

- Footprint, solar and wind farms are massive;
- decentralized power generation, less blackouts;
- no "horizon pollution " due to windmills;
- no more killing of birds by windmills;
- solar and wind does not get you to Mars any time soon. DPF can be used for spacecraft propulsion getting you to Mars in days or weeks in stead of months;
- lower costs still.
 

S'toon

Knows where his towel is
Apr 23, 2015
3,702
3,751
AB
- Footprint, solar and wind farms are massive;
- decentralized power generation, less blackouts;
- no "horizon pollution " due to windmills;
- no more killing of birds by windmills;
- solar and wind does not get you to Mars any time soon. DPF can be used for spacecraft propulsion getting you to Mars in days or weeks in stead of months;
- lower costs still.
OK. There are a few fallacies here. Actually, renewable energy sources have actually improved grid stability, not detracted from it. \

Is Renewable Energy Reliable?

How renewable energy is improving grid reliability


I don't know what you mean by "horizon pollution." This must be a subjective thing by wind turbine haters. I like the looks of them.

The killing of birds is a talking point by haters of wind energy, but in reality they don't kill that many birds. More birds die by running into the sides of buildings than by wind turbines. The number one cause of bird deaths is by cats. Cats kill over a billion birds per year. Want to save birds, ban cats.

Wind turbines kill around 300,000 birds annually, house cats around 3,000,000,000

9 leading causes of bird deaths in Canada | CBC News




Nope, sorry. The reactor won't get you to Mars quicker. The travel time is not set by the energy source. It's by propulsion speed, which is not controlled by the energy source.
 
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Bobfitz1

Active Member
Supporting Member
Sep 24, 2012
1,236
4,009
Ludlow, Vt
I agree that we need to work on all possible solutions because the actual course needed may require all of them. That said, I have noticed that fusion has been 5 to 10 years off since I first started reading about it in the 1960s. Billions (yes, with a "B") have been spent. The nightmare scenario might be a Manhattan Project that costs billions or trillions, ending up with a system that is working (and therefore there is a lot of vested interest in keeping it going) but has enormous down-sides as well (nuclear waste, large water requirements, large land footprint, etc., or whatever it happens to be, like with fission). I can't help but think that if fusion (i.e., with net positive energy output) was possible with a reasonable level of effort (i.e., not break the bank), we should have found it by now...I'm just sayin'....

I hear you. It really is hard. Good, bad or ugly approach!
I don't think you need lose sleep over ITER succeeding and then being rammed down the world's throat. The most up to date revision of ITER's timeline is that the actual fusion experiments won't begin until 2035! I sure hope they are not building it anywhere close to the French coastline! The latest total cost after the latest cost overruns comes to 22 billion U.S.

"Despite this latest progress, ITER is still many years away from being anything close to operational as a fusion reactor.
Born as a cooperative project between the US, China, India, Japan, Russia, South Korea and the European Union, ITER has faced numerous delays.

According to the most recently released timeframe, the reactor will not come online until at least 2025, and fusion will not be attempted for another 10 years after that.

As well, despite being so far away from readiness, the project is already massively over budget. As of mid-2016, cost overruns were projected at around $5.3bn. "
 
I'm not so sure that solar footprint is a problem. Seems that every home has a roof larger than what would be needed to put solar on. I added a few panels to a weedy bank, also, which I think looks better than the weeds.

Then there are those who think that the only people who should deal in electricity is a huge electric company who must put in square miles of panels so the poor homeowner won't have to have them on his roof. Really? You know, they charge you for this convenience. So I have 66 panels, on my roof and on a bank, and I don't care what the electric company does nor do I worry about my solar footprint.
 

nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
9,185
13,960
United States
- Footprint, solar and wind farms are massive;

You're certainly using a unique definition of the word 'massive'. Wind can be co-opted with farming with effectively zero footprint. The US could get 100% of it's energy from solar (which it wouldn't need to because wind) would only require 4x as much area as we currently reserve for golf. Add to that the fact that most homes and businesses have enough roof space or real estate to supply 100% of what they need. S'Toon did a good job responding to the rest of the FUD. Solar, Wind and storage are the only options left. Maybe a miracle will happen but I'm certainly not counting on it. The arrays I've helped install generated ~15MWh this month. We ALL need to do more. Sure, gamble a few bucks on LPP... AFTER you install ~20kW of solar.
 

Bobfitz1

Active Member
Supporting Member
Sep 24, 2012
1,236
4,009
Ludlow, Vt
OK. There are a few fallacies here. Actually, renewable energy sources have actually improved grid stability, not detracted from it. \
Is Renewable Energy Reliable?
How renewable energy is improving grid reliability
I don't know what you mean by "horizon pollution." This must be a subjective thing by wind turbine haters. I like the looks of them.
The killing of birds is a talking point by haters of wind energy, but in reality they don't kill that many birds. More birds die by running into the sides of buildings than by wind turbines. The number one cause of bird deaths is by cats. Cats kill over a billion birds per year. Want to save birds, ban cats.
Wind turbines kill around 300,000 birds annually, house cats around 3,000,000,000
9 leading causes of bird deaths in Canada | CBC News

Nope, sorry. The reactor won't get you to Mars quicker. The travel time is not set by the energy source. It's by propulsion speed, which is not controlled by the energy source.

You were doing pretty good until the end! The travel time to say, Mars, depends on how much thrust your propulsion system can generate and how long it can run and increase the ships velocity. Thus the energy source determines both max thrust available and whether it can operate for minutes, hours, etc. If the energy source is LOX and rocket fuel (methane for BFR), then transit time is also determined by how much fuel it is possible to bring and burn.

NASA has proposed ideas for fusion engines which they believed might reduce transit time to Mars from months to 30 - 45 days.
 

Dutchie

Active Member
Jun 9, 2013
1,841
6,841
Canada
Nope, sorry. The reactor won't get you to Mars quicker. The travel time is not set by the energy source. It's by propulsion speed, which is not controlled by the energy source.

Yes it does Space Propulsion

BTW I am not at all a "turbine hater" or see solar negatively. On contrary. I was just bring up some of the negatives other people have. I just think LPPFusion - when it works - is a better way forward. There will be no need for a grid as one reactor - which would be as big as an gas station- would be able to provide enough power for a small community of about 5000 houses.
 

nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
9,185
13,960
United States
- when it works -

Screen Shot 2018-04-30 at 8.09.54 PM.png
 
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Lessmog

Active Member
Aug 24, 2013
2,966
8,473
Smögen
....
Nope, sorry. The reactor won't get you to Mars quicker. The travel time is not set by the energy source. It's by propulsion speed, which is not controlled by the energy source.
Leaving aside the Earth-bound and esthetical aspects you mention, what would be the point going to Mars only to be deprived of energy once there? Solar might work, only less efficiently than here; wind probably not at all. Fission has a host of its own problems. Fusion, if it works (and the object of LPP is to find out), could contribute. Yes, a pretty big if for LPP, but pico compared to the alternative approaches.

I did not participate in Wefund (closed now) since I'm already invested and cautiously hopeful.
 

jaguar36

Active Member
Apr 10, 2014
2,162
1,975
NJ
In 2004 LPP posted a business plan saying "of capital invested in LPP will increase at least 15-fold over a 10-year period, an averaged rate of 31% per annum". That clearly didn't happen. They were also saying in 2004 that the lab work would only take 20 months. They were also trying to sell shares back then as well.

Looking at their website from 2015 it doesn't look like a whole lot has changed. Their timeline to market appears to be about the same. In 2015 it doesn't seem like they are any closer to their goal than in 2004. Today the story is the same. In fact a lot of the timeline hasn't been changed at all. That to me seems to reinforce the whole Fusion is always a decade away belief. They seem to be continually making 'progress' but yet are still just as far from being successful as always.

For the last 15 years Lerner has been saying it will only take a few million dollars to achieve basically free energy. And yet in that time, he hasn't been able to find anyone willing to give him an amount of money that is essentially peanuts to NASA, the DOE, or any of a number of private individuals or corporations. Something doesn't add up.
 
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ggr

Expert in Dunning-Kruger Effect!
Moderator
Mar 24, 2011
7,282
31,572
San Diego, CA
Nope, sorry. The reactor won't get you to Mars quicker. The travel time is not set by the energy source. It's by propulsion speed, which is not controlled by the energy source.
Actually it will. If you have sufficient power, you can run an ion drive continuously. Even a small acceleration, continuous, is much better than firing a rocket for a few minutes then coasting for 0.7 years (the best unpowered orbit).

(looking up that duration, because I couldn't remember it, I found this great explanation of Hohmann Orbits particularly w.r.t. Mars: Flight to Mars: How Long? And along what path? )
 

Dutchie

Active Member
Jun 9, 2013
1,841
6,841
Canada
From LPPFusion

We did it! Thanks!!

With your help, we did it! LPPFusion’s Wefunder campaign closed Monday night, having raised the full $1 million we aimed for. We won’t know the exact figure for a week or two, but we do know it will be within a percent or two of a million dollars. Thanks so much to all of you who invested and to all who spread the word to friends and colleagues. This was a collective effort, but special credit goes to LPPFusion Director of Communications Ivy Karamitsos, who wrote and produced the Wefunder videos and directed the advertising campaign; to Torulf Greek who volunteered his time to create amazing animations for our the videos; to LPPFusion Systems Administrator Jose Varela, who assisted on all aspects of the campaign; and to our social media volunteers: Mark Klapheke, Warwick Dumas, and Ignas Galvelis.

We now have the resources to devote our full attention to preparing for our beryllium experiments in the summer. Forward to Fusion!

So, no more excuses about lack of funding. Let's see the cigar...
 
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mblakele

FSD Beta (99)
Mar 7, 2016
1,831
6,424
SF Bay Area
Here are a couple of articles from The Economist, discussing different approaches to fusion and the Iter project in France. If you hit a paywall, try your browser's private or incognito mode.

Fusion power is attracting private-sector interest

[...]

Challenges no doubt lie ahead. As Stephen Dean, of Fusion Power Associates, a foundation that follows the field, observes, “the history of fusion doesn’t give you a lot of confidence that there won’t be a problem. You know we’ve been at it for 50 years and there’s always been a problem.” Nevertheless, he also says that he knows of no showstoppers for any of the private companies. “They’re all based on good physics. They’re all good people that are doing these programmes.” And the prize is enormous. If even one of the fusion startups succeeds, the world’s electricity supply will be guaranteed—and carbon free—for ever.​

Iter, a reactor in France, may deliver fusion power as early as 2045

[...] Dr Bigot says Iter is 60% of the way to the 2025 startup goal.

Those first experiments, whenever they actually happen, will study the physics of deuterium-tritium plasmas in the reactor—these two isotopes of hydrogen being the front-running candidates as the fuel mixture for nuclear fusion. Only after a decade of such work will fusion experiments proper begin. The aim is to return at least ten times as much energy from nuclear reactions as is used to heat the plasma up in the first place. By 2045, Dr Bigot hopes, engineers will be able to start designing power stations based on Iter’s results.

[...]​
 

nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
9,185
13,960
United States
Here are a couple of articles from The Economist, discussing different approaches to fusion and the Iter project in France. If you hit a paywall, try your browser's private or incognito mode.

Fusion power is attracting private-sector interest

[...]

Challenges no doubt lie ahead. As Stephen Dean, of Fusion Power Associates, a foundation that follows the field, observes, “the history of fusion doesn’t give you a lot of confidence that there won’t be a problem. You know we’ve been at it for 50 years and there’s always been a problem.” Nevertheless, he also says that he knows of no showstoppers for any of the private companies. “They’re all based on good physics. They’re all good people that are doing these programmes.” And the prize is enormous. If even one of the fusion startups succeeds, the world’s electricity supply will be guaranteed—and carbon free—for ever.​

Iter, a reactor in France, may deliver fusion power as early as 2045

[...] Dr Bigot says Iter is 60% of the way to the 2025 startup goal.

Those first experiments, whenever they actually happen, will study the physics of deuterium-tritium plasmas in the reactor—these two isotopes of hydrogen being the front-running candidates as the fuel mixture for nuclear fusion. Only after a decade of such work will fusion experiments proper begin. The aim is to return at least ten times as much energy from nuclear reactions as is used to heat the plasma up in the first place. By 2045, Dr Bigot hopes, engineers will be able to start designing power stations based on Iter’s results.

[...]​

Sounds like it might be a nice supplement to the actual solutions like wind, solar and storage that can ACTUALLY be deployed in a time frame that they're relevant. 2045 might as well be 2450 as far as climate is concerned.
 

Bobfitz1

Active Member
Supporting Member
Sep 24, 2012
1,236
4,009
Ludlow, Vt
Here are a couple of articles from The Economist, discussing different approaches to fusion and the Iter project in France. If you hit a paywall, try your browser's private or incognito mode.

Iter, a reactor in France, may deliver fusion power as early as 2045

[...] Dr Bigot says Iter is 60% of the way to the 2025 startup goal.

Those first experiments, whenever they actually happen, will study the physics of deuterium-tritium plasmas in the reactor—these two isotopes of hydrogen being the front-running candidates as the fuel mixture for nuclear fusion. Only after a decade of such work will fusion experiments proper begin. The aim is to return at least ten times as much energy from nuclear reactions as is used to heat the plasma up in the first place. By 2045, Dr Bigot hopes, engineers will be able to start designing power stations based on Iter’s results.
[...]​

Sorry to dump cold water on big government fusion research but..
Excepting the scientists whose research livelihoods depend on ITER, it is becoming widely recognized as a fusion research dead end and big science boondoggle. Robert L. Hirsch, who directed the country’s fusion energy program in the 1970s through the Atomic Energy Commission, wrote at length in 2012 on the many reasons why ITER (and other large tokamak designs) will never lead to economically viable commercial fusion reactors.
A Veteran of Fusion Science Proposes Narrowing the Field

Dr. Hirsch in a letter published in Physics Today in 2017 advocated support for fusion research using hydrogen boron (pB11) as fuel, because fusion with it does not produce huge amounts of high energy neutrons which over time make containment structures radioactive. Former US Fusion Chief Hirsch Advocates pB11 in Physics Today

I've come to believe that most non tokamak privately funded fusion projects will likewise never become commercially practical, even if they one day succeed in producing net fusion energy. Large solar panel installations now being built are approaching 1 to 2 cents per kWh. Solar PV will continue to improve year after year for the next 10 - 20 years at least, each year further reducing cost of the power produced. No one is going to invest millions or billions to build fusion plants if the energy they produce will cost multiple times as much as solar PV at that time. Only a low cost fusion approach would be able to produce power at a cost equal or less than solar and wind. LPPFusion's dense plasma focus approach could be sufficiently low cost if it proves out. A greatly improved experimental research DPF beginning operation this summer may produce large enough fusion output gains to justify continued development of this approach.
 
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Dutchie

Active Member
Jun 9, 2013
1,841
6,841
Canada
Sorry to dump cold water on big government fusion research but..
Excepting the scientists whose research livelihoods depend on ITER, it is becoming widely recognized as a fusion research dead end and big science boondoggle. Robert L. Hirsch, who directed the country’s fusion energy program in the 1970s through the Atomic Energy Commission, wrote at length in 2012 on the many reasons why ITER (and other large tokamak designs) will never lead to economically viable commercial fusion reactors.
A Veteran of Fusion Science Proposes Narrowing the Field

Dr. Hirsch in a letter published in Physics Today in 2017 advocated support for fusion research using hydrogen boron (pB11) as fuel, because fusion with it does not produce huge amounts of high energy neutrons which over time make containment structures radioactive. Former US Fusion Chief Hirsch Advocates pB11 in Physics Today

I've come to believe that most non tokamak privately funded fusion projects will likewise never become commercially practical, even if they one day succeed in producing net fusion energy. Large solar panel installations now being built are approaching 1 to 2 cents per kWh. Solar PV will continue to improve year after year for the next 10 - 20 years at least, each year further reducing cost of the power produced. No one is going to invest millions or billions to build fusion plants if the energy they produce will cost multiple times as much as solar PV at that time. Only a low cost fusion approach would be able to produce power at a cost equal or less than solar and wind. LPPFusion's dense plasma focus approach could be sufficiently low cost if it proves out. A greatly improved experimental research DPF beginning operation this summer may produce large enough fusion output gains to justify continued development of this approach.

Hi Bob, nice to see you here again. Usually we here from Eric Lerner every week on Facebook but ever since the last post - right before the first shots with the Berrylium electrodes - it has been quiet. I even send him a message and usually Eric responds right away. Not this time. Perhaps some good results which he needs to publish first? Do you know more?
 
I just read the latest LPP update with results of the first shots using beryllium electrodes. The big news is, they say they have achieved their goal of low impurities. However this has not resulted in higher fusion yield. They are significantly below the yield when using the tungsten electrodes, less than half (100 mJ vs 250 mJ). I was unable to see a clear explanation for why, or what they plan to do to get back on track, other than trying small optimizations and firing more shots.

Anybody else have more insight?
 

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