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Researchers Report on Research Results of Argon Fluoride Laser Fusion

Credit: Navy Research Institute

Experts at the US Navy Research Institute are competing for sustainable clean energy with advances in fusion energy. Steve Obenschain, Ph.D., NRL Research Physicist. Said that fusion would be a valuable addition to a clean energy source, as it could provide base load power when the sun wasn’t shining and the wind wasn’t blowing. Base load is the minimum demand level for the power grid over a period of time, for example a week.


NRL scientists collaborate with the U.S. Department of Energy on the results of an argon fluoride (ArF) laser fusion study Royal Society Philosophical Transactions last fall.

The scientific paper “Direct drive with argon fluoride laser as a path to high fusion gain with submegajoule laser energy” is a promising technique for ArF to achieve the high gain inertial fusion implosion required for energy production. I am reporting that there is. Laser fusion involves implosion of small capsules to achieve the high density and temperature (100 million degrees Celsius) required to initiate a fusion reaction.

If the fusion energy gain is much greater than what is needed to power the laser, it can be used as a power source. NRL simulations show that ArF’s deep UV light can enable high gain with much lower laser energy than previously thought to be feasible.

“ArF lasers have the potential to enable the development and construction of much smaller and lower cost fusion power plants,” Ovenschain said. “This accelerates the deployment of this attractive power source and provides enough fuel material to be readily available for thousands of years.”

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory National Ignition Facility (NIF) announced on August 8 that it had conducted a laser fusion experiment to generate almost the same fusion energy as the laser beam used to drive the implosion. The result is especially important. The NIF results produced 1.3 megajoules of fusion energy, equivalent to a pound of high explosives, thereby demonstrating the basic scientific and technical feasibility of laser fusion.

“The NIF results are impressive and highlight the need to look at which laser technology will accelerate future progress. NRL ArF laser technology provides a much higher path to fusion gain and yield.” Said the Ovens chain. “These qualities are needed for the National Nuclear Security Administration’s stockpiling management program, and fusion power needs high profits.”

Researchers Report on Research Results of Argon Fluoride Laser Fusion

Nike’s laser lens array focuses 44 krypton-fluorine (KrF) laser beams on targets that represent a small portion of the implosion capsule. A mm-sized target appears in the center lens. The KrF laser is similar to ArF, but with a slightly longer wavelength (248 nm). Nike’s experiments advance the basic physics for uniformly accelerating targets at the high speeds required for fusion implosions.Credit: Navy Research Institute

High-energy ArF lasers require significant investment to reach the performance required for fusion and the energy, repetition rate, accuracy, and 1 billion shot-class reliability required for commercial power plants, Obenschain said. Says.

“Our research to date has shown that there are no fundamental obstacles to the ArF direct-drive inertial confinement energy system meeting these requirements,” Obenschain said.

“This advantage has the potential to facilitate the development of reasonably sized, inexpensive fusion power plant modules that operate with laser energy of less than 1 megajoule,” he said. “It will dramatically change the existing view that laser fusion energy is too high and power plants are too big.”

“NRL is a world leader in the development of high-energy argon fluoride laser technology,” said Dr. Max Karasik, Head of the Laser Driven Target Physics section of NRL. Computer simulation to determine the optimal configuration for high gain blasting with an ArF laser. “

This possibility of ArF lasers for fusion energy has created support from the DoE Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) Breakthroughs Enableing Thermonuclear-.fusion Energy (BETHE) program.This program supports timely and commercially viable development Fusion energy..

The Laser Plasma Division of the Plasma Physics Division is leading this research activity and has developed a three-step plan to advance the argon fluoride laser to the performance required for high energy gain blasting.

The first phase is complete Basic science And the ArF technology currently underway at NRL. In the second stage, full-scale high-energy ArF laser The beamline is built and tested. In the third phase, implosion facilities will be constructed from 20 to 30 of these beamlines and will be used to demonstrate the increase in high energy required for both defense and defense (> 100). energy application.

Dr. Peter Matic, Associate Director of Research, Department of Materials Science and Components Technology, said:A potentially game-changing approach to accelerate your quest Laser fusion.. ”


Nuclear scientists praise the breakthrough in fusion in the United States


For more information:
SP Obenschain et al, Direct Drive with Argon Fluoride Laser as Path to High Fusion Gain with Submegajoule Laser Energy, Royal Society Philosophical Transactions A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences (2020). DOI: 10.1098 / rsta.2020.0031

Quote: Researchers obtained research results of argon fluoride laser fusion obtained from https://phys.org/news/2021-10-argon-fluoride-laser-fusion.html on October 26, 2021 (2021). October 26th) is reported

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Researchers Report on Research Results of Argon Fluoride Laser Fusion

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