China's 'artificial sun' sets world record with 100 second steady-state high performance plasma

July 6, 2017
Basic parameters of the world's longest 101.2 s high confinement discharge achieved on EAST (Bt=2.5T, PRF=3.0MW, ne/neGW=0.55, Te=4.0KeV, H98y2=1.1, Upper single null configuration) Credit: EAST Team

China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) made an important advance by achieving a stable 101.2-second steady-state high confinement plasma, setting a world record in long-pulse H-mode operation on the night of July 3rd.

The obtained high confinement mode features edge-localized modes (ELMs) with small perturbation amplitude under the condition of low-momentum injection with pure RF (LHCD, ICRF, ECRH) wave heating, and an actively cooled ITER-like monoblock tungsten divertor.

With effective control of the divertor target heat load and tungsten impurity influx, and the center chord average electron density maintained at > 50% of the Greenwald density limit, EAST achieved a fully non-inductive, current-driven, steady-state with a confinement enhancement factor H98y2 greater than 1.1 for more than 100 seconds.

All the plasma parameters, including recycling, and particle and heat fluxes, reached a truly steady state after 20 seconds—the wall saturation time for the W divertor—and remained stable until the end of the discharge.

Chief Operator GONG Xianzu shared the good news and his excitement with some EAST partners at home and abroad at midnight via social media. GONG has witnessed every advance made on the machine as well as its setbacks, since his first operation of EAST in 2006. This breakthrough, he said, indicates EAST will "continue to play a key role in both the physics and engineering fronts of steady-state operation, and has significant scientific implications for the International Thermonuclear Fusion Reactor (ITER) and the future China Fusion Engineering Test Reactor (CFETR)."

"It is a success based on joint efforts," said GONG. The EAST team has worked together with collaborators at home and abroad over the past decade to solve a series of key technical and physical issues closely related to steady-state operation, and carried out in-depth scientific research on integrated operation scenarios with effective coupling of multi-scale physical processes. The EAST 2017 experimental campaign will go on for about one more month; the second round of experiments will start in autumn of this year.

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15 comments

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Sonhouse
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
What happens to make it stop at 100 seconds?
Eikka
5 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2017
What happens to make it stop at 100 seconds?


The OFF switch?

These experimental devices don't have the cooling necessary to keep them running for very long.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
What happens to make it stop at 100 seconds?


The OFF switch?

These experimental devices don't have the cooling necessary to keep them running for very long.
"It is the first tokamak to employ superconducting toroidal and poloidal magnets. It aims for plasma pulses of up to 1000 seconds."
vitor_navarro
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
Hi,

Can someone explain to me what steady-state plasma means and whats is this artificial sun?

Thank you.
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (1) Jul 06, 2017
Hi,

Can someone explain to me what steady-state plasma means and whats is this artificial sun?

Thank you.
This is the internet. There is enough info in the above article for you to do your own research and educate yourself.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
"It is the first tokamak to employ superconducting toroidal and poloidal magnets. It aims for plasma pulses of up to 1000 seconds."


That doesn't mean they are able to do it right now.

The Wendelstein 7-X too is aiming for plasmas up to 30 minutes, but in its current configuration it can't achieve more than 50 seconds before the RF transmitters and the reactor parts overheat - because they haven't actually built the cooling systems and reactor shielding yet. Doing so would have been a pointless waste of money and time if it hadn't worked as expected.

You don't build a prototype up to full production specs only to find out the design is fundamentally flawed and doesn't work. Suppose you're rebuilding a car engine, and want to see if it will even start - you don't need to bother to hook up a water pump and radiator to run it for 10 seconds.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
You don't build a prototype up to full production specs only to find out the design is fundamentally flawed and doesn't work
You're still ad libbing. Those are the design parameters. Google it. Maybe you can find milestones and planned upgrades.

LHC didn't start off at full power either did it?
gculpex
not rated yet Jul 06, 2017
I'm more interested in knowing the density of the gas...
rrrander
1 / 5 (1) Jul 07, 2017
Gullible leftist Westerners are too quick to believe this stuff from China. Like how they are at the vanguard of the fight against mythical global warming while they continue to build dozens of coal power plants. Sheep.
Da Schneib
not rated yet Jul 07, 2017
Meh, commies always go for the One Big Factory approach. Tokamaks may eventually work but there are more promising avenues. If the Chinese were really smart, they'd be trying small fusion. But it would be disruptive and anarchist. The cadres and commissars wouldn't like it.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 07, 2017
Those are the design parameters. Google it. Maybe you can find milestones and planned upgrades.


https://en.wikipe..._Tokamak

EAST was designed to test:

Superconducting Niobium-titanium poloidal field magnets, making it the first tokamak with superconducting toroidal and poloidal magnets
Non-inductive current drive
Pulses of up to 102 seconds with 0.5 MA plasma current


The tokamak itself is designed to operate for 1-1000s but not necessarily at high currents. It looks like at 102 seconds they reach the power supply's limits and have to shut down.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 07, 2017
And BTW
You don't build a prototype up to full production specs only to find out the design is fundamentally flawed and doesn't work
- this isn't a prototype. It's a test reactor, designed to ultimately operate for 1000 sec per pulse.
antialias_physorg
not rated yet Jul 07, 2017
Gullible leftist Westerners are too quick to believe this stuff from China.

This is an international collaboration and has been going on for quite some time.
KBK
not rated yet Jul 09, 2017
over-unity devices which are large, cumbersome, and can only exist in a regime of centralized power, where the 'free energy' can be leveraged at net zero cost... to control populations..those technologies are real and coming. They can be promoted.

any similar thinking of the cracking of the firmament, which involves individuals creating or utilizing 'over-unity', or 'free energy', where someone tinkers and makes it work - all of that is lies. No such individual and individual freedom enhancing or enabling technologies will ever work, and all purveyors of such are freaks, illiterates, charlatans, thieves, fakes, and so on. They need to be ridiculed and their technologies wiped out.

Tokamak centralized controllable 'excess energy' -- good.

Individual freedom enhancing and democratizing zero fascism/corporatism/despotism 'excess energy' devices -- bad.

Got it?

So get out there and shill, shill, shill, and attack, and make sure no one attempts to be free.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 09, 2017
Individual freedom enhancing blahh
You're welcome to cut your own firewood and make tallow candles if you want. What's stopping you? You can even use the trolleys as fusion will make them free.

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