01-01-2017   News
Photo credit: Andreus | Dreamstime.com

As the world looks for alternative sources of energy, scientists in South Korea have successfully made a breakthrough in harnessing an unlimited source of clean and safe energy through nuclear fusion.

South Korea has the world's attention after it's Korean Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research reactor set a world record by holding superheated plasma in a steady state for one minute and 10 seconds.

South Korea just cracked the nagging problem associated with nuclear fusion and radioactive waste that accompanies it. It's important to note that nuclear fission is an alternative to nuclear fusion and hence this move by South Korea could revolutionize the energy delivery system if implemented into widespread use, this will also eliminate reliance on fossil fuels and all the economic, geopolitical, social, and environmental ramifications that come with it.

South Korea simply progressed deployment of nuclear fusion technology from the realm of science fiction to proving that burning star-like fuel is possible and can be contained using current technology; South Korea has proven this with research such as KSTAR.

The KSTAR facility is capable of generating temperatures of up to 300 million degrees Celsius which is approximately 540 million degrees Fahrenheit for plasma blobs, it's located about 100 miles south of Seoul.

Interesting Engineering reported that the plasma blobs are held together by magnetic fields, thus enabling them to create helium atoms. This renders it capable of generating unlimited power, theoretically.

Science Alert reported that in unlocking nuclear fusion, it's crucial to contain this ultra-hot type of matter. Adding that it's a big step forward in our endeavors to make safe, clean, and virtually limitless source of energy which is more reliable. Science Alert also pointed out that this kind of operation is capable of generating power without nuclear waste for a millennium using just seawater. However, the ideal safety and sustainability controls have to be maintained. Nuclear fusion technology is less risky in terms of plant meltdown.

The Korea Times reported that nuclear fusion is the process that makes the sun to shine, this happens when the nuclei of small atoms are squeezed together and heated to an extreme degree such that they fuse to form larger nuclei and as a result they release a burst of energy. However, the conventional nuclear power plants depend on materials such as plutonium or uranium to create the fission to generate energy. The problem comes from the radioactivity of resulting fragments. However, with the nuclear fusion reaction, problems about waste disposal are minimal.

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