The scientists used lasers to fuse two light atoms into a single one, releasing 3.15MJ (megajoules) of energy from 2.05MJ of input – roughly enough to boil a kettle.

Why do we even study this? Renewables are the only way. This is a waste of money which is a finite resource.

  • jeff
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    1003 months ago

    So 1. This is newable. Green, almost waste free, and unlimited.

    If we can refine fusion, we will stop global warming and energy insecurity, virtually overnight.

    It’s not a waste to invest in clean tech R&D. At one point, people said the same thing about solar, and look where we are now

    • Sonori
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      3 months ago

      While this is exciting and there are many reasons to continue to research fusion, fighting climate change is very much not one of them. It has all of the real problems of fission, namely high cost, low scale, and difficult construction, but exacerbated to an extreme degree. If new fission projects struggle to get investor funding becuse of low profitability and difficult construction times dispite nearly a century of development, it is unlikely that a technology so complex and expensive that we don’t even had a plan for a power plant yet will do better.

      We might have a fusion pathfinder plant by 2050 or 2060, we need to be off fossil fuel by 2030 to 2035. We might be able to built sufficient fission by then if we started now at scale, national average construction times tend to be between 5 to 10 years, but fusion is a tool that might at best replace the power plants we build today, not the coal and natural gas plants we built yesterday.

      I bring this up not because I oppose funding fusion and pure science, but because any argument that calls it an answer to climate change is going to fall apart the second you consider any alternative on a cost or time basis.

      • @WetBeardHairs
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        12 months ago

        I agree. I really wish the nuclear regulators would fast-track approval for those small modular reactors built in a factory. We should be building those as quickly as possible so they compete with natural gas peaking plants.

      • @CTDummy@lemm.ee
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        233 months ago

        In the way the other poster compared them? Yes, in so far as people who complain “the new, developing technology isn’t immediately as optimised and refined as I want it to be” for both.

        • @IchNichtenLichten@lemmy.world
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          -393 months ago

          Do you have a basic understanding of the challenges of getting electricity from a fusion reaction vs the challenges of manufacturing PV panels?

          • @CTDummy@lemm.ee
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            243 months ago

            Seeing as you deliberately seem to be missing the point in order to try and feel smarter I’m going to leave you to it. Have a good one.

            • @IchNichtenLichten@lemmy.world
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              -33 months ago

              We can carry on throwing money at it, I’m fine with that. Thinking that fusion is going to save us is dangerous though. We need to be taking action now to get us off fossil fuels and the most cost-effective way to do that is renewables + storage.

          • CaccaDoodie
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            3 months ago

            The first challenge is that nobody knows how to sustain it and have been researching it for 80 years. That’s a pretty big one…

          • @lntlOP
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            i think a central barrier at the moment is fusion doesn’t readily start a chain reaction like fission can. scientists are likely exploring the use of the yield of the fusion reaction to reload the reactor (kind of like an automatic firearm) and these techniques are far from mature in this setting.

            PV is a simpler mechanism in every way and we’ve been studying it for more than 100 years. They’re very different both technologically and maturity-wise

            • DerGottesknecht
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              43 months ago

              The sun is a fusion reactor which is sustaining a reaction for millions of years already. Iter is a concept which tries to emulate this

      • neuropean
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        53 months ago

        Fusion is constant, wouldn’t require large amounts of batteries to store energy. There are advantages to each.

        • PupBiru
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          103 months ago

          thus the term “energy mix”… nobody arguing in good faith says PV is all we need

        • @IchNichtenLichten@lemmy.world
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          -43 months ago

          It’s not though, not withstanding stars. We’ve managed 17 minutes so far. We’re so far away from turning this into a useable power source that it’s absurd.

            • @IchNichtenLichten@lemmy.world
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              -33 months ago

              We’ve been working on fusion in one form or another for nearly 100 years. We’re still nowhere near turning it into a useable energy source. I don’t really care if research continues or not, I’m sure the research can be useful in other areas but fusion is not going to save us.

  • @CTDummy@lemm.ee
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    Why do you have multiple post of breakthroughs in nuclear tech with negative criticism?

    In fact multiple posts appearing to concern troll renewables with statements like “coal is here to stay”??

    • Echo Dot
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      Because they’re all solar punk enthusiasts. Basically modern day hippies but without the common sense.

      They really really like renewable energy but they don’t have a clue what they’re talking about so anytime anyone comes up with anything that isn’t solar panels or wind turbines they throw a fit.

    • @lntlOP
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      -1063 months ago

      Id you’re going to judge me on my post history, then read ALL of them.

      Creep

        • @lntlOP
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          -453 months ago

          is it not creepy to photograph children in a public park?

          just because things are in the public, doesn’t mean what’s happening is not creepy

            • @lntlOP
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              -363 months ago

              imagine I’m reading through all of your comments and posts for the next hour or so of my life. all of my thoughts are centered on you. what you think, how you articulate, your sense of humor, what memes you like, everything you’ve made public. it’s creepy.

              • mihies
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                163 months ago

                Um, no, it’s not. That’s why it’s public. Feel free to read mine, if you want to waste your time.

                • @lntlOP
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                  -273 months ago

                  your post count is zero, my lemmy

              • @LinyosT@sopuli.xyz
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                3 months ago

                See that can be solved as easily as just not putting that information publicly online.

                If you make information public then someone is going to read it. That’s generally how that works.

          • @CTDummy@lemm.ee
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            93 months ago

            Oh uh uh mate. I was happy to not reply but as others have pointed out I noticed by seeing multiple posts with your username in all. I then checked your post history to confirm my suspicion.

            Your commenting history is public by design, it was programmed that way, for the very reason I used it. So someone can see if a poster has history of posting bad faith shit. The fact that you’re trying the whole “creep” angle means you’re intentionally being disingenuous about it or have no idea how the internet has worked since forums.

            • @lntlOP
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              -53 months ago

              you’re such an intelligent person, why engage?

              • @CTDummy@lemm.ee
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                92 months ago

                A sad reply but I’m glad to see you’ve given up the pretending. Your post, the replies and the downvotes are probably cause for some introspection, though given this reply you don’t strike me as the type. Have a good one.

                • @lntlOP
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                  -72 months ago

                  Only your hatred can destroy me

        • Norgur
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          153 months ago

          Lemmy is just not big enough to bury shit like that in the flood of useless background noise like reddit.

          People will see attempts like this in their feeds, no digging required.

  • TheOneCurly
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    683 months ago

    All renewable energy comes from the sun, which is a giant fusion reactor. Seems like it might be a good idea to study and understand the concept.

    • @SkyeStarfall@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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      153 months ago

      Yeah, fusion is about the longest lasting power source in the entire universe. It quite literally is what the entire universe runs on. Without fusion, there would have been no stars. The universe would be dead.

    • @cecinestpasunbot
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      32 months ago

      If it’s not geothermal or nuclear, that energy probably came from the sun one way or another.

      • @WetBeardHairs
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        22 months ago

        Geothermal and nuclear came from the previous sun.

    • @lntlOP
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      -563 months ago

      it’s so expensive though

  • @School_Lunch@lemmy.world
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    313 months ago

    Fusion is the first step to a post scarcity world. All the new technology, products, agriculture methods, ect. that would be made possible with abundant, clean energy would completely transform the world. I doubt solar and wind could ever provide enough to make those advances.

    • Zorque
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      73 months ago

      Scarcity isn’t a supply issue, it’s a utilization issue. They way most economies work, resources are not created if they can’t provide maximum financial return.

      The first step to a post-scarcity world is changing that mindset.

        • Ooops
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          That’s not how it works. Then you might have figured out basically unlimited clean energy. But it will still not be provided to everyone who needs it but only to the selct group that pays the most to have that advantage over the rest.

        • Zorque
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          -23 months ago

          The things most worth doing are rarely the easiest.

          If you actually want to accomplish something sometimes you have to tackle difficult problems.

      • Norgur
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        33 months ago

        This response has nothing in terms of actual value, but Checks all the motivational speaker boxes. It’s not reality you struggle with, it’s your mindest, bro!

  • @Auzy@beehaw.org
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    The comment by op kind of feels weird…

    But. More options are always good, and this provides more options, with the added benefit of creating helium (which is a limited resource, and gets mainly harvested when mining fossil fuels at the moment).

    So this actually helps solve more than 1 problem, if they can get it to work

    • @faintwhenfree@lemmus.org
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      143 months ago

      I downvotes solely for OP’s comment. Nuclear energy has its place, if magically we had enough solar and wind farms constructed and even the grid built that connects the whole world, all of it magically just appearing. We will still not be able to retire fossil fuel power generation immidiately because we don’t have a storage technology that scales well enough atm and renewable can’t cover baseload as they can’t generate 24x7 output.

    • @lntlOP
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      -23 months ago

      this lemmy gets it

  • @mlg@lemmy.world
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    173 months ago

    Renewables are already well researched. It’s up to governments to enforce their use if they want.

    Fusion can be huge because it can theoretically be scaled up significantly.

    Even though both this reactor and ITER have small energy production goals, if they can get a reaction to run for a usable period of time, then it becomes something worth investing into to improve.

    Even the USA chucks money at it because it could have military use. Fission power started in a similar way.

    • Ooops
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      63 months ago

      Renewables are already well researched. It’s up to governments to enforce their use if they want.

      Actual reality: Renewables are already well researched and by far the cheapest way of production. It’s up to governments to stop blocking them for their fossil fuel buddies.

  • Nougat
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    173 months ago

    Renewables are the only way.

    You’re right! We should power everything by burning charcoal.

    • 摆 烂
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      33 months ago

      Hey! It’s Green Charcoal buddy, none of that regular polluting stuff.

      • Nougat
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        23 months ago

        Primitive Technology guy is more important than ever.

      • Nougat
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        13 months ago

        I wasn’t being sarcastic at all. OP wants renewables, and charcoal is renewable.

          • Nougat
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            32 months ago

            It absolutely is. Charcoal comes from wood. You can plant more trees. Renewable.

  • @zerfuffle
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    153 months ago

    You’re not even citing the right reactor. LLNL did that experiment, this reactor in Japan is to try to scale it.

  • hexthismess [he/him, comrade/them]
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    133 months ago

    Waste of money, which is a finite resource.

    You are calling a self sustaining energy technology a waste of money, which is inherently a made up resource. Go be a downer somewhere else.

  • @DeathsEmbrace
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    133 months ago

    This is a 100%+ efficiency reactor with the capacity to basically make itself run all on its own with automation. How many electrical generators can run on their own 24/7?

  • KᑌᔕᕼIᗩ
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    There’s a difference between what works best now to meet our energy needs (renewables) and the furthering of the science behind nuclear technology. We can do both.

  • AutoTL;DRB
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    83 months ago

    This is the best summary I could come up with:


    The world’s biggest nuclear fusion reactor has begun operations in Japan, marking a major milestone towards achieving the “holy grail” of clean energy.

    The experimental JT-60SA reactor in Japan’s Ibaraki Prefecture offers the best opportunity yet to test nuclear fusion as a sustainable and near limitless power source.

    The opening of the JT-60SA reactor comes just one year after scientists at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California achieved a net energy gain with nuclear fusion for the first time.

    Physicist Arthur Turrell, who was not involved in the research, described the achievement of nuclear fusion ignition as “a moment of history” that could define a new era of energy.

    “This experimental result will electrify efforts to eventually power the planet with nuclear fusion – at a time when we’ve never needed a plentiful source of carbon-free energy more.”

    One of the main objectives for the newly opened reactor, which measures six stories in height, is to replicate the feat of producing a net surplus of energy.


    The original article contains 419 words, the summary contains 167 words. Saved 60%. I’m a bot and I’m open source!

  • @rando895
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    72 months ago

    The current energy consumption of the planet is 113,000Twh (according to Wikipedia). Since every single Joule of renewable energy is some derivative of solar energy (solar, wind, tide, hydro, but not geo I suppose) the maximum energy we can derive from renewables is 765,000Twh.

    The problem with that, is if we start to consume 10’s of percent of the total solar radiation through “renewables” that would otherwise go into generating weather and other natural events, well I’m sure you can see the potential problems.

    So, we have to get away from carbon intensive electricity generation, but we can’t physically rely solely on renewables. Therefore we need fission/fusion.

    There’s obviously the case of our current economic system causing us to overuse energy in the name of profit (oil is so important because it makes energy cheap and thus easier to make profits), and a change in production/consumption/distribution priorities would likely cause huge decreases in energy needs globally. But we can only really consider energy needs based on what we know.

    Whoops, I forgot the “achtually”.