Direct Fusion Drive technical animation

At long last, we have a professional animation explaining how the Direct Fusion Drive works. Enjoy!

4 thoughts on “Direct Fusion Drive technical animation

  1. Excellent idea. This reminds me of a theoretical device proposed a number of years ago called the Gas Dynamic Mirror Fusion rocket.

    Anyway, I have a question as a physicist. How do you plan to deal with the cyclotron losses? Is the idea to just absorb them in the cool plasma layer around the outside?

    If I was 20 years younger, I might have gone into this field.

    • The synchrotron is mostly reflected back into the plasma and absorbed. Some, along with the bremsstrahlung, is absorbed in the gas of the heat engine that produces power to drive the reaction. That gas is in cooling ducts outside of the vacuum vessel. As you know, the radiation losses are high in plasmas with high burn temperatures.

      Mike

  2. First of all, I am not a physicist! But the diagram of your ‘field-reversed configuration’ makes it look as though particles would have to make 180 degree turn. That sounds as though it would cost far more energy than simply accelerating particles on their way in one direction? Also I read that you have not yet succeeded in producing fusion (which would presumably require a temperature of around 1 million Kelvin??) and somehow the million degree plasma would have to avoid all contact with containing walls? If you could ever actually succeed in producing nuclear fusion, then the applications would go way beyond powering rocket engines?? it would be great to read an article on your project written for non-physicists (there are millions of us out here… 🙂 )

    • The particles from the gas box go through the scrape off layer in more or less a straight line. The fusion happens in the FRC but only the fusion reactants are in the FRC. The magnetic fields prevent wall contact. Also the scrape off layer, several centimeters in our gas, insulates the walls from the really hot plasma.

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