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The Korean “artificial sun” produces a record number of plasma with a temperature of 100 million degrees

The Korean “artificial sun” produces a record number of plasma with a temperature of 100 million degrees

Recently, a team of scientists from South Korea managed to do just that He broke the energy production record by producing a ball of plasma with a temperature of 100 million degrees for about 50 seconds. This experiment is part of the Korean Advanced Superconducting Tokamak Research (KSTAR) and uses one of the most advanced nuclear fusion reactors on the planet. No wonder its nickname is the Korean artificial sun.

Scientists explain that the new components introduced into the reactor allowed the temperature to be recorded; He managed to last nearly 20 seconds longer than the previous record. The reactor remained running for exactly 48 seconds.

Researchers believe that testing the new KSTAR components will open the doors to the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) – and could become the largest fusion reactor of its kind in the world.

The KSTAR record was unveiled by the Korea Fusion Energy Institute (KFE), When the reactor was able to reach a temperature about seven times the temperature of the sun. The team is currently reviewing data from the latest trials to understand all the variables and thus enable the study to provide all the data that led to the recent results.

“Despite being the first experiment conducted in the new tungsten converter environment, comprehensive hardware testing and campaign preparation allowed us to achieve results that exceed those of previous KSTAR records in a short period. To achieve the ultimate goal of Operation KSTAR, we plan To sequentially improve the performance of existing heaters and actuators as well as secure the fundamental technologies required for high-performance, long-pulse plasma operations.”, Si Wu Yun.

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Nuclear and plasma reactor with a temperature of 100 million degrees

As plasma physicist at the KFE High Performance Scenario Research Team, Hyun Seon Han, said, The ultimate goal is to produce a plasma with a temperature of 100 million degrees that remains active for more than 300 seconds. – They expect this to happen by mid-2026.

In other words, scientists plan for the KSTAR reactor to release massive amounts of energy in about six times longer than the current record.

The photo shows the vacuum chamber at the Korea Advanced Research Superconducting Tokamak Reactor (KSTAR).source: Korea Fusion Energy Institute (KFE)

KFE also revealed that KSTAR was able to achieve high confinement mode (H mode) for approximately 102 seconds. One of the reasons for this possibility was the modernization of the reactor with tungsten converters. It is a detail that provides significant advantages for processes involving high temperatures.

“KSTAR's ultimate goal is to achieve 300 seconds of plasma operation with ion temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees. To achieve this goal, the KSTAR team has focused on key research areas as well as improving device performance. This includes installing additional tungsten plasma components and ensuring feedback control Real-time using AI technology to optimize device performance.

Did you like the content? Stay up to date with more studies on nuclear energy here at TecMundo. If you wish, take the opportunity to understand how Russia and China plan to build a nuclear reactor on the Moon.