Polywell-specific FAQ

Discuss the talk-polywell site itself, including appearance, policies, and help-wanted requests from the administrators.

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StevePoling
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Polywell-specific FAQ

Post by StevePoling »

i just clicked the FAQ link and found several helpful questions and answers about posting to the forum, but found nothing physics related.

What prompted my question is my ignorance of some of the terms that get tossed around frequently. For example, I've heard that electrons can be thermalized. Now, unless someone is talking about some kind of sub-atomic tea cozy, I have no idea what that means.

I'm sure several frequent posters have been asked frequently seemingly idiot questions by people who don't know how to spell bremstrahlungh (like me). It'd be a great time saver for all involved to just point to a FAQ. Yes, there are some helpful Wiki pages, but it's not FAQ oriented. And I feel ignorant enough to want some "where's the ground" questions answered to orient IEC discussion with other things I know.

MSimon
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Re: Polywell-specific FAQ

Post by MSimon »

StevePoling wrote:i just clicked the FAQ link and found several helpful questions and answers about posting to the forum, but found nothing physics related.

What prompted my question is my ignorance of some of the terms that get tossed around frequently. For example, I've heard that electrons can be thermalized. Now, unless someone is talking about some kind of sub-atomic tea cozy, I have no idea what that means.

I'm sure several frequent posters have been asked frequently seemingly idiot questions by people who don't know how to spell bremstrahlungh (like me). It'd be a great time saver for all involved to just point to a FAQ. Yes, there are some helpful Wiki pages, but it's not FAQ oriented. And I feel ignorant enough to want some "where's the ground" questions answered to orient IEC discussion with other things I know.
Start on the sidebar here:

http://iecfusiontech.blogspot.com/

There are tutorials. My original 3 part series is not a bad place to start but it is not entirely correct. Then go on to Tom's piece. Or start with Tom's "World's Simplest...".

Then there are physics papers once you have the basics.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

StevePoling
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I've been working my way through them

Post by StevePoling »

I've been working my way through your sidebar. And it's pure gold. But like reading the Wikis, I get answers, but it's haphazard.

Take for example, gyroradius. If I understand correctly, it's the radius of the spiral that a charged particle will follow along a magnetic field line. I figured this out this morning, but a week or so ago when I saw it mentioned in the context of electron loss through funny cusps, I could make no sense of it.

Or the brehmsstrahlung radiation I asked you about. When I took physics, this was the mechanism whereby x-rays are generated by slamming hot electrons into a tungsten target. In an IEC, you've got electrons circulating around the device, and you've got fuel ions circulating. When two fuel ions slam into one another, they can fuse and that's the point. When the wrong things slam together, that's bad, and it took a bit of to-and-fro to associate that badness with brehmsstrahlung radiation.

Then there's the talk of Maxwellian distributions in Mr. Rider's Masters' Thesis and drifting Maxwellian distributions in Dr. Bussard's reply. I eventually figured out they were talking about the sorta-brownian motion of particles in the former case, and imposing an overall breeze in a particular direction upon the sorta-brownian motion in the latter case. And I'm not sure whether they're talking about electrons, fuel ions, or both.

And how does an edge become annealed?

What would be perfect if we could get all the noob's like me to write down a list of the first 15 things that make them go "duh???" when they first start reading about IEC fusion. Then get you smart guys who've said, "I answered that twice last year," to cut and paste their answers into the FAQ.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

Steve,

None of this is easy. It is like learning a new microprocessor. The manuals run into the 1,000s of pages and missing one little bit can screw you. It takes time. Most of the unfamiliar stuff like Bremss. can be found in the Wiki.

On a lot of points (edge annealing) there is no agreement on how it is happening. So no point in writing it up. The point of edge annealing is to keep the ions and electrons from upscattering and thus become losses (energetically).

The FAQ idea has been mentioned for over a year. No one has yet tackled it. Maybe you would like to give it a shot. While your ignorance is fresh in your mind. The Zen mind is an empty mind.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

StevePoling
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Post by StevePoling »

You're right about learning a new microprocessor.

Even the answers raise questions.

What's "upscattering?"

pstudier
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Post by pstudier »

MSimon wrote:can be found in the Wiki.
What Wiki? The Polywell Wiki has been down for days. Wikipedia's article does not have a lot of detail.
Fusion is easy, but break even is horrendous.

Tom Ligon
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Post by Tom Ligon »

Check the repository of papers at Askmar ...

http://www.askmar.com/Fusion.html

I can't spot the paper, but I think one of the early ones had something in it on edge annealing. A couple of them address Bremsstrahlung.

The basic argument for annealing is that the ions bunch up as they approach the outer edge of the potential well, and they also lose energy. If they have not lost too much (thus fail to make it up that high) or gained too much (too much kick will slosh them out without having a chance for this to work), they actually will "thermalize" in some band approaching the top lip of the potential well, in this one region where their density is high and energy low. The Boltzmann distribution at this low energy (near zero KE) is comparitively narrow, so it tends to average out any inequalities acquired at higher energies.

That's a sort of fuzzy description, though. It is obviously imperfect, so one needs experiment or really good modeling to see if it is good enough.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

pstudier wrote:
MSimon wrote:can be found in the Wiki.
What Wiki? The Polywell Wiki has been down for days. Wikipedia's article does not have a lot of detail.
Individual topics. Like gyro radius.

BTW why is the wiki down?

It appears OK here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polywell
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

KitemanSA
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Questions for a Polywell FAQ

Post by KitemanSA »

1. Who currently owns the Bussard Polywell Patents?

2. Is the non-profit organization set up by Bussard still in existance, and if so, what is its organizational structure? Is it a 501(c)3 organization?

3. Does EMC2 have a published Plan of Action and Milestones for reaching commercial fusion power? If so, what is it / where can I find it?

4. If the Navy "expert" review is sufficiently negative / contradictory to prevent further Navy investment, what is the next step?

5. Can I help?
Last edited by KitemanSA on Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MSimon
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Re: Questions for a Polywell FAQ

Post by MSimon »

KitemanSA wrote:1. Who currently owns the Bussard Polywell Patents?
EMC2
2. Is the non-profit organization set up by Bussard still in existance, and if so, what is its organizational structure? Is it a 501(c)3 organization?
I believe so. It should be confirmed.
3. Does EMC2 have a published Plan of Action and Milestones for reaching commercial fusion power? If so, what is it / where can I find it?
Not that I am aware of. I have published a proposed plan of action at IEC Fusion Technology blog. It was based on my limited understanding of the problems and has had zero input from the EMC2 folks.
4. If the Navy "expert" review is sufficiently negative / contradictory to prevent further Navy investment, what is the next step?
Private funds.
5. Can I help?[/list]
Stay tuned.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

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