Where are the WB-6/WB-7 limits ?

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charliem
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Where are the WB-6/WB-7 limits ?

Post by charliem »

Hi everyone.

I'm just another new guy in this forum, and would like to start my posts with one asking those who know better these machines about what we can expect from WB-7.

What I wonder is how much can it be driven beyond the conditions in the WB-6 experiments?. I'd like to know some educated guesses (if anyone have) about the parameters of operation. Say:

1) Is 12.5 kV the maximum HV drive attainable?
2) Is 0.13 T the maximum B attainable?
2) Is the vacuum level a problem in WB-7?
3) How about de electron injection system?
4) Is the neutral gas injection problematic?
5) What other variables can be modified?
6) Which ones of the above are key to prolongue the pulses duration.
7) Are they going to try other gass mixes, like D-T or D-3He?

I only have a partial answer to question 2, without refrigeration the coils in WB-6 can withstand the 800 A (B = 0.13 T) for 25-35 secs, and, supposed the batteries could give it, 1.6 kA (B = 0.26 T) for about 6-8 secs (pitty they didnt add of a precooling mechanism, I think they could have cuadruple that B and shorten very much time between runs).

It's been said that the data obtained from WB-6 is too scarce to support the claims of late Dr. Bussard about its operation principles and theory, that a fusion plasma that lasted a few tenths of a milisec and produced only 3 or 4 neutron counts proves nothing. I hope that WB-7 changes that soon.

My regards.

Carlos.

tonybarry
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Post by tonybarry »

Hello Carlos,
Welcome to Talk-Polywell. Unfortunately I do not know enough about WB-7 to answer your questions.

Most of your questions can really best be answered by Dr. Rick Nebel, who has posted here occasionally. He does have some confidentiality arrangements with the DoD which may preclude us getting such information as it becomes available. However he has posted recently that he is not averse to making many WB-7 devices and seeding them out to universities and suchlike for around USD500k-1M - including confinement (vacuum) vessel, power supplies, pumps, and operator training.

If this is the case, then we may see results sooner rather than later, because enough data must be disseminated for a university to pony up the bucks required. Nobody will buy a pig in a poke just because somebody says "It's great!". Dr. Joe Khachan said that he would consider it worthwhile to get on a plane with a microwave interferometer in a suitcase, and do the measurements himself. If knowledgeable people know that WB-7 is the Real Deal, it will propagate like wildfire.

Regards,
Tony Barry

Tom Ligon
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Post by Tom Ligon »

Carlos,

As the guy who designed the big chamber in which WB6 was run, I know they've built a new chamber, which appears to be far more compact and probably pumps more effectively. I expect that will improve the situation of getting rid of neutral gas.

The basic coil design is probably fairly similar to WB6, but better insulated, with attention given to avoiding the WB6 failure mechanism. Not having a cooling system will definitely limit the number of tests that can be run in a day, and if they try to push that, they'll harm it. We know they are making a point of being careful.

I believe someone said they opened up the spacing between coils a bit. That may reduce electron losses and gas production.

I don't know what else they have done to it ... I suspect it is still a fairly primitive device, control-wise. I would guess they have somewhat better control of deuterium injection. The power supplies are apparently new, and may not be as prone to massive discharges.

I would expect they can coax longer periods of fusion from it, but still short bursts.

And none of my blathering is worth the bits. Only the results matter.

JohnP
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Post by JohnP »

I can hazard a guess about the fuel - DD is easiest so they'll stick with that for now. Tritium requires special handling and license to use, He3 probably hard to obtain(?). So it's DD for a nice baseline.

charliem
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Post by charliem »

@tonybarry: Thank you. I undertand the necessity for some level of secrecy about all this, and that's why I'm not going to ask Dr. Nebel, but I think it is fair to share what we, outside the EMC2 team, already know and maybe extrapolate a bit from it.

@Tom: Do you remember the specs of the old caps and batteries banks, and vacuum system?. Most probably they've been upgraded but at least those would give us some base figures.

@JohnP: DD is the easiest yeah, but if what they are trying is not only to prove WB-6 results, but also to get some inspiring new ones (like say neutron counts well beyond 3-4) that would help. I agree that that hasn't have much to do with physics, but from a PR point of view I think it would help their cause... as PR, politics, and funds go hand in hand these days.

MSimon
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Post by MSimon »

charliem wrote:@JohnP: DD is the easiest yeah, but if what they are trying is not only to prove WB-6 results, but also to get some inspiring new ones (like say neutron counts well beyond 3-4) that would help. I agree that that hasn't have much to do with physics, but from a PR point of view I think it would help their cause... as PR, politics, and funds go hand in hand these days.
If they figured out how to double the on time to .5 mS that would give a number of counts per experiment that start to become significant. Their main problem was inability to control gas flow. I would assume they have that improved in this version.

The puff gas system along with the pulsed magnets would give a lot of info on Beta. But for finding out other stuff it is kind of crude.

One of the things they are doing is using a data collection system with a much higher collection rate than Dr. B had.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

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