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The 2016 LHC proton-proton run is now over, with delivered (41.07 CMS/38.4 ATLAS) and recorded (37.82 CMS/35.5 ATLAS) luminosities (in inverse fb) far above the goal for this year of 25. Together with last year’s data, the experiments now have … Continue reading ?

Scientists measure how ions bombard fusion device walls

For the first time, researchers at West Virginia University (WVU) have directly measured the complicated 3D patterns of flowing plasma as it strikes the walls of fusion and space propulsion devices.

Gamma ray camera offers new view on ultra-high energy electrons in plasma

Researchers at General Atomics (GA) have invented a new kind of gamma ray camera that can image beams of energetic electrons inside ultra-hot fusion plasma.

General atomics breakthrough enables greater control of fusion energy

Researchers working at the DIII-D National Fusion Facility at General Atomics (GA) have created an important new tool for controlling fusion plasmas that are hotter than the sun.

Launching fusion reactions without a central magnet, or solenoid

The tokamak is an experimental chamber that holds a gas of energetic charged particles, plasma, for developing energy production from nuclear fusion. Most large tokamaks create the plasma with solenoids—large magnetic coils that wind...Show More Summary

Steering a fusion plasma toward stability

Plasmas in fusion-energy producing devices are gases heated to millions of degrees that can carry millions of amperes of current. These superhot plasmas must be kept away from material surfaces of the vacuum vessel that contains them by using strong magnetic fields. Show More Summary

Fusion reactor designs with 'long legs' show promise

Magnetic fusion is all about managing the interface between hot plasma and ordinary materials. The strong magnetic field in a tokamak—the vessel used in this fusion approach—is a very effective insulator; it is able to reduce the plasma...Show More Summary

Fixing deficits in boundary plasma models

Researchers working on the DIII-D tokamak in San Diego are working to show how plasma transport and atomic physics come together to provide power exhaust solutions.

From Germany comes a new twist for fusion research

This past year saw the commissioning and initial operation of a new large-scale plasma experiment, the Wendelstein 7-X (W7-X) in Greifswald, Germany. Designed, constructed, and operated by the Max-Planck Institute for Plasma Physics (IPP) with an international team of collaborators, the device is impressive. Show More Summary

Extinguishing a fusion fire in a flash of light

Fusion energy researchers have discovered that they can rapidly extinguish and cool a magnetically confined fusion plasma hotter than the center of the sun by injecting a large quantity of neon gas to prevent damage to fusion-energy devices when there is a loss of plasma equilibrium.

Breakthrough in Z-pinch implosion stability opens new path to fusion

Using magnetic field thermal insulation to keep plasmas hot enough to achieve thermonuclear fusion was first proposed by the Italian physicist Enrico Fermi in 1945, and independently a few years later by Russian physicist Andrei Sakharov. Show More Summary

Alcator C-mod bows out with a new world record

On its final day of operation, the Alcator C-Mod tokamak at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Plasma Science & Fusion Center set a new record for plasma pressure in a magnetic confinement device. These results help validate the high-field approach to fusion energy, which could lead to smaller, cheaper fusion power plants.

Synopsis: Making Monopoles with Waves

Magnetic monopoles—theorized particles with only one magnetic pole—might possibly be created by wave-wave collisions. [Physics] Published Thu Oct 27, 2016

A turbulent solution to a growing problem

A recent experiment lead by University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), researchers on the DIII-D tokamak suggests that plasma turbulence can prevent filamentary structures called magnetic islands from growing so large that they cool off the 100 million degree plasma. Show More Summary

A disappearing feast: Mean flows remain slim after eating eddies

Magnetic confinement fusion holds the promise of almost limitless amounts of energy, available on demand and producing zero carbon dioxide. But in order to harness that energy, we must trap plasma—an ionized gas—hotter than the center of the sun inside a donut-shaped magnetic facility called a tokamak that measures just a few yards across. Show More Summary

Liquid flow in capillaries contradicts conventional wisdom

Certain shapes of capillary cannot keep liquid contained, however narrow they are

The struggle for convergence

Are all the fields of science converging towards a unified narrative? Manjit Kumar assesses the “deepest idea in the universe”

Web life: Precarious Physicist

If teaching physics to undergraduates strikes you as a secure, well-respected and at least somewhat highly paid job, this blog will challenge your assumptions

A bright idea

Can a biochemistry technique win the battle against background for scientists studying the nature of neutrinos? While we read, think, move or just perceive the world around us, thousands of neurons fire in our brain. Ions, like little messengers, jump from neuron to neuron and create a cascade of information transfer. Show More Summary

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