China’s Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) fusion reactor broke a world record. Scientists managed to sustain a plasma temperature of 120 million degrees Celsius for 101 seconds in their latest round of experiments.
Chinese state media reported the reactor was also able to sustain a temperature of 160 million degrees Celsius for 20 seconds.
According to Li Miao, director of the physics department in Shenzhen, “The breakthrough is significant progress, and the ultimate goal should be keeping the temperature at a stable level for a long time,”
Clean and limitless energy
Using EAST reactor, scientists are trying to create nuclear fusion using deuterium. Nuclear fusion is the process that occurs naturally in the sun and stars. Scientists estimated that the deuterium in one litre of seawater can generate energy equivalent to 300 liters of gasoline. So, nuclear fusion has the power to provide near unlimited clean energy at remarkably low costs.
No doubt it sounds very promising. But Lin Boqiang, the director of the China Center for Energy Economics Research said they are decades away from getting a working reactor. “It’s more like a future technology that’s critical for China’s green development push,” Boqiang added.
Image source: NASA Goddard Laboratory for Atmospheres and Yohkoh Legacy data Archive, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
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