EMC2 news

Point out news stories, on the net or in mainstream media, related to polywell fusion.

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crowberry
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EMC2 news

Postby crowberry » Thu Sep 10, 2015 12:27 pm

Michael S. Fischer interviews Jaeyoung Park in the article Fusion: Are We There Yet? and discusses funding of private fusion enterprises.

The Investment
EMC2 is seeking private investment for a three-year, $30 million commercial research program to prove the polywell can work as a nuclear fusion power generator. “We have had a 20-year involvement by the Navy, and it has been a very productive relationship,” says Park. “We were able to address a lot of basic scientific questions.” He understands that at this point, the company has to give up its government subsidy and seek private funding. “The Navy’s view is that they will provide transitional funds, but it’s time for us to go out on our own,” he says. “In their view, we’re becoming an adult.”

Park hopes to appeal to deep-pocket individual investors, as well as family offices and foundations that are committed to solving the energy problem—“people who look at this as their responsibility and their destiny,” he says. “It’s our generation’s job to solve the energy problem. Whenever we created energy in the past, we created pollution and created problems about sustainability, and we’ve done that for more than 200 years.”

An investment in the program is not for the fainthearted, Park freely admits. “People ask whether there are any applications in the middle [before building a reactor], and there aren’t many,” he says. “So it’s a very high-risk and high-return proposition.”

Investors will have full access to the energy production potential of fusion technology, where the biggest impact of the fusion is expected to be. EMC2 owns 100% of the intellectual property from its research. The Navy has licensing rights for specific applications it orders. EMC2 will keep confidential a small segment of the technology that is unique and critical to the Navy.

The $30 million phase will complete the last remaining technical milestone before EMC2 embarks on the development of a reactor. Park’s ambition is to see the company’s first reactor on the grid in about 10 years, and almost immediately start to replace coal-based power plants. “That will be the first target because among power sources, that’s the worst one,” he says. “We’ll probably replace nuclear fission, because although its contribution has been great, it’s time to replace it with a better technology.” He also expects the reactor to complement other energy sources, such as solar and wind, and begin to phase out natural gas and the fossil fuels.

Many power plants exist around the world. “How fast we’re going to replace them is going to be market driven, how much each country will invest to replace those old technology power plants and put in this one,” Park says. He estimates that an achievable goal is to replace 20% to 40% of the global electricity market in 20 to 30 years.

Park acknowledges this will be a huge undertaking. “A reactor doesn’t get built very quickly,” he says. That will require a significant infusion of capital, on the order of $200 million to $300 million, he says. He envisions teaming up with an existing energy player. In that event, EMC2 might issue the company 20% to 30% of its shares, and an investor could make an early exit.


http://www.fa-mag.com/news/fusion--are-we-there-yet-23010.html

mvanwink5
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby mvanwink5 » Thu Sep 10, 2015 5:42 pm

This explains recent Navy funding,
“The Navy’s view is that they will provide transitional funds"

Quite nice of the Navy, actually, I take back any aspersions spoken or implied about the Navy. I continue to have hopes EMC2 will secure adequate funding, after all Helion secured funds recently. This funding sure is a slow painful process.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

Skipjack
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Skipjack » Thu Sep 10, 2015 7:32 pm

Seeing how hard it is for other fusion startups to secure funding, I have little hope that Park will find the full 30 million USD. IMHO, they have shown less than companies like Helion, who need less funding to achieve their goals.
Still, it is good to see that the Navy is still helping them with the transition. I do however not quite understand why the navy does not keep fully funding them, if they believed it was going to work.

mvanwink5
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby mvanwink5 » Thu Sep 10, 2015 8:59 pm

I have little hope that Park will find the full 30 million USD
Staged funding to 30 million is what I would expect. The point that Ladajo turns pessimistic is the 'tell' I am looking for to turn off the optimistic view.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

ladajo
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby ladajo » Fri Sep 11, 2015 12:07 am

I am glad that this interview was done. It was overdue.
Individual funding from inside the U.S. is a low probability. It is more likely to be external.
However, there are other options, and they are being looked at.
I remain optimistic from a funding and technology perspective.
EMC2 remains the most likely candidate in my book. Too date not the best marketed, but under the hood, the best option.

I would caution you all that this next phase of EMC2's existence may be murky and a little turbulent from your perspective.
Rest assured that there is a strategy and corresponding plan in place, with reasoned branch plans developed as well.
Be patient.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

Skipjack
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Skipjack » Fri Sep 11, 2015 3:27 am

ladajo wrote:I remain optimistic from a funding and technology perspective.
EMC2 remains the most likely candidate in my book. Too date not the best marketed, but under the hood, the best option.

I think that Helion is the best bet of all right now. They got a solid technology, they have funding and their technology is solid.
Tri Alpha is pretty well off too.
If I had to bet, I would bet of either one of the two to be the first to make break even.
I have recently rejoiced a bit regarding Tokamaks. Compact spherical Tokamaks with superconducting coils are not the worst option. Tokamak Energy is doing a good job. There is also the Dynomak, which looks really promising. Tokamak Energy would be my 3rd bet because of that.
I am skeptical about EMC2 because I dont see any funding right now. You might know something I dont know. But until I see that, I will be less optimistic.

mvanwink5
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Sep 11, 2015 4:21 am

"You might know something I dont know."

Hence, my deference to Ladajo's view on funding... He seems to think it is going to be funded one way or the other (as far as I can read his comments). As far as bets go, until a big machine is made and run we might as well be at the track. Plasma is the devil's playground.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

ladajo
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby ladajo » Fri Sep 11, 2015 4:38 am

Yes, I think it will be funded one way or another.

And yes, plasma is the devil's playground, and this is why Park is the best bet.
He has done much more that others to manage the playground.
The main point I think you are all missing is that Jaeyoung needs one cycle to prove viability.
The others are still not sure if they will or will not be viable.
Jaeyoung knows what to check, and how to do it. None of the others actually do.

Be patient.
I sense a possible alignment in the Force coming. Not certain, but possible.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)

What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

Skipjack
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Skipjack » Fri Sep 11, 2015 6:30 am

ladajo wrote:he main point I think you are all missing is that Jaeyoung needs one cycle to prove viability.
The others are still not sure if they will or will not be viable.
Jaeyoung knows what to check, and how to do it. None of the others actually do.

I am pretty sure Helion is already past that point as well. They have a done a lot of experiments that have all been very positive. That is why they are now going ahead with the break even machine, which should have first plasma next year, if I remember correctly.

Enginerd
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Enginerd » Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:35 am

"Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."
--Philip K. Dick

Giorgio
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Giorgio » Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:48 am

Finally some good news. My only concern is when/if they will actually share more results once they get founded.
Look, stars!

ladajo
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby ladajo » Fri Sep 11, 2015 12:58 pm

Skipjack wrote:
ladajo wrote:he main point I think you are all missing is that Jaeyoung needs one cycle to prove viability.
The others are still not sure if they will or will not be viable.
Jaeyoung knows what to check, and how to do it. None of the others actually do.

I am pretty sure Helion is already past that point as well. They have a done a lot of experiments that have all been very positive. That is why they are now going ahead with the break even machine, which should have first plasma next year, if I remember correctly.


While recent results were more encouraging, fundamentally they still face stability issues. As well as stability issues they don't know about yet.
Beyond that, they all face materials issues. But that is less of an issue I think than the stability nut.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)

What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

mvanwink5
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby mvanwink5 » Fri Sep 11, 2015 2:41 pm

Tri Alpha's latest machine results were impressive on plasma stability, which were that they showed they could sustain spheromak stability for as long as they ran their experiment. So, scaling is next for Tri Apha also. If I had one real world natural phenomena to point to for belief that TriAlpha, Helion, and GF (their issue is compressing a stable spheromak, with corresponding temperature increase - a snag) will succeed, it is the existence of ball lightning phenomena. But that belief does not necessarily imply belief in a final practical fusion reactor, which requires pushing the spheromak to a commercial conclusion. For the final complete success (once funded - and Navy continuing to provide sustaining funds until $30 mill project finance is truly encouraging), I am inclined to bet on EMC2.
Near term, cheap, dark horse fusion hits the air waves, GF - TED, LM - Announcement. The race is on.

D Tibbets
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby D Tibbets » Fri Sep 11, 2015 5:29 pm

Just to beat an old horse, all four approaches mentioned (and perhaps others including Dense Plasma Focus and Z pinch) have shown promising advances in the physics. As such, the competition should be heating up. Meanwhile, the political, economic and technical inertia of the tokamak approach of ITER continues drag along. Even some tokamak variations and stellorators may be gaining momentum over the ITER. Will the DOE wake up?

Dan Tibbets
To error is human... and I'm very human.

Skipjack
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Re: EMC2 news

Postby Skipjack » Fri Sep 11, 2015 6:57 pm

ladajo wrote:While recent results were more encouraging, fundamentally they still face stability issues.

That is not what I hear ;)

ladajo wrote:Beyond that, they all face materials issues.

Everyone does. EMC2 does more than Helion, especially with DT which is what they are seemingly planning to do first. Helion does D+He3, less fast neutrons and their burn chamber is a simple cylindrical piece far away from the sensitive equipment and easily replaced.


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