Science

China’s “artificial sun” marks development in nuclear fusion

Researchers from China’s Hefei Institutes of Physical Science reported its fusion reactor reached 100 million degrees Celsius, over six times the temperature of the sun’s core.

CHINA (Next Media) – Researchers from China’s Hefei Institutes of Physical Science reported its fusion reactor reached 100 million degrees Celsius, over six times the temperature of the sun’s core.

The reactor is called the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak, also known as the EAST. The donut-shaped machine supports nuclear fusion by using magnetic fields that keep hot plasma from melting the exterior walls of the tokamak.

Nuclear fusion is a thermonuclear process that occurs when the nuclei of two light atoms, usually hydrogen, combine and form a heavier atom, in this case helium. This process results in release of energy in the form of heat and light — the same way by which the sun produces its warmth.

Researcher’s from the EAST project hope to develop technology that will allow humans to someday extract clean energy from nuclear fusion.

Scientists from the ITER project — a multinational experiment aiming to harness nuclear fusion energy — have stated that fusion fuels are expansive and do not release harmful emissions.

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