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Encyclopedia > PACER

The PACER project, carried out at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the mid-1970s, explored the possibility of a fusion power system that would involve exploding small hydrogen bombs (fusion bombs)—or, as stated in a later proposal, fission bombs—inside an underground cavity. Los Alamos National Laboratory, aerial view from 1995. ... The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979, inclusive. ... The Sun is a natural fusion reactor. ... The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, 1945, rose some 18 km (11 mi) above the epicenter. ... The mushroom cloud of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945 lifted nuclear fallout some 18 km (60,000 feet) above the epicenter. ...


The proposed system would absorb the energy of the explosion in a molten salt, which would then be used in a heat exchanger to heat water for use in a steam turbine. In the original fusion-bomb proposal, a huge cavity would be emptied in a salt dome, but further developments used engineered cavities instead. A typical design called for a 4 m thick steel alloy blast-chamber, 30 m (100 ft) in diameter and 100 m (300 ft) tall, to be embedded in a cavity dug into bedrock in Nevada. Hundreds of 15 m (45 ft) long bolts were to be driven into the surrounding rock to support the cavity. The space between the blast-chamber and the rock cavity walls was to be filled with concrete; then the bolts were to be put under enormous tension to pre-stress the rock, concrete, and blast-chamber. The blast-chamber was then to be partially filled with molten fluoride salts to a depth of 30 m (100 ft), a "waterfall" would be initiated by pumping the salt to the top of the chamber and letting it fall to the bottom, and while being surrounded by this falling coolant, a 1-kiloton fission bomb would be detonated; this would be repeated every 45 minutes. The fluid would also absorb neutrons to avoid damage to the walls of the cavity. A heat exchanger is a device built for efficient heat transfer from one fluid to another, whether the fluids are separated by a solid wall so that they never mix, or the fluids are directly contacted. ... A rotor of a modern steam turbine, used in a power plant A steam turbine is a mechanical device that extracts thermal energy from pressurized steam, and converts it into useful mechanical work. ... A salt dome is formed when a thick bed of evaporite minerals (mainly salt, or halite) found at depth intrudes vertically into surrounding rock strata, forming a diapir. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


Another example: a 2-kiloton bomb; this produces an energy of 8 TJ (8 × 1012 joules), which would be absorbed by 2,000 metric tons of flibe (a mixture of lithium and beryllium fluorides), i.e. 4 MJ/kg; the energy the coolant absorbs per mass for heating and evaporation is the same as the energy value of TNT, hence the amount of coolant has to be the same as the TNT-value of the bomb. The joule (symbol: J) is the SI unit of energy, or work with base units of kg·m²/s² (N·m). ... A tonne (also called metric ton) is a non-SI unit of mass, accepted for use with SI, defined as: 1 tonne = 103 kg (= 106 g). ... General Name, Symbol, Number lithium, Li, 3 Chemical series alkali metals Group, Period, Block 1, 2, s Appearance silvery white/gray Atomic mass 6. ... General Name, Symbol, Number beryllium, Be, 4 Chemical series alkaline earth metals Group, Period, Block 2, 2, s Appearance white-gray metallic Atomic mass 9. ... A fluoride ion is the ionic form of fluorine. ... Trinitrotoluene (TNT) is an explosive. ...


As an energy source, the system is the only one that could be demonstrated to work using existing technology. However it would also require a large, continuous supply of nuclear bombs, making the economics of such a system rather questionable. The production of thermonuclear, or even just nuclear, bombs requires high immediate capital expenses, and also has long-term environmental costs. Additionally, the political effects of beginning a large-scale production of nuclear bombs could potentially be large, and with increasing bomb numbers, increased security measures would be necessary. The entire system—fissile material production, bomb fabrication, and power generation—could be carried out in a single well-guarded site, but only for great development costs that would likely never be recovered by generating energy.


See also


An artists conception of a spacecraft powered by nuclear pulse propulsion Nuclear pulse propulsion (or External Pulsed Plasma Propulsion, as it is termed in one recent NASA document) is a proposed method of spacecraft propulsion that uses nuclear explosions for thrust. ...

  Fusion power  v·d·e 
Atomic nucleus | Nuclear fusion | Nuclear power | Nuclear reactor | Timeline of nuclear fusion
Plasma physics | Magnetohydrodynamics | Neutron flux | Fusion energy gain factor | Lawson criterion
Methods of fusing nuclei
List of fusion experiments

Magnetic confinement devices
ITER (International) | JET (European) | JT-60 (Japan) | Large Helical Device (Japan) | KSTAR (Korea) | EAST (China) | T-15 (Russia) | DIII-D (USA) | TFTR (USA) | NSTX (USA) | NCSX (USA) | Alcator C-Mod (USA) | LDX (USA) | PACER (USA) | H-1NF (Australia) | MAST (UK) | START (UK) | DEMO (Commercial) The Sun is a natural fusion reactor. ... A semi-accurate depiction of the helium atom. ... The deuterium-tritium (D-T) fusion reaction is considered the most promising for producing fusion power. ... A nuclear power station. ... Core of a small nuclear reactor used for research. ... Timeline of significant events in the study and use of nuclear fusion: 1929 - Atkinson and Houtermans used the measured masses of light elements and applied Einsteins discovery that E=mc² to predict that large amounts of energy could be released by fusing small nuclei together. ... A Plasma lamp In physics and chemistry, a plasma is an ionized gas, and is usually considered to be a distinct phase of matter. ... Magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) (magnetofluiddynamics or hydromagnetics), is the academic discipline which studies the dynamics of electrically conducting fluids. ... neutron flux n : the rate of flow of neutrons; the number of neutrons passing through a unit area in unit time via dictionary. ... The fusion energy gain factor, usually expressed with the symbol Q, is the ratio of fusion power produced in a nuclear fusion reactor to the power required to maintain the plasma in steady state. ... In nuclear fusion research, the Lawson criterion, first derived by John D. Lawson in 1957, is an important general measure of a system that defines the conditions needed for a fusion reactor to reach ignition, that is, that the heating of the plasma by the products of the fusion reactions... The deuterium-tritium (D-T) fusion reaction is considered the most promising for producing fusion power. ... Magnetic Fusion Energy (MFE) is a sustained nuclear fusion reaction in a plasma that is contained by magnetic fields. ... A split image of the largest tokamak in the world, the JET, showing hot plasma in the right image during a shot. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Stellarator magnetic field and magnets A stellarator is a device used to confine a hot plasma with magnetic fields in order to sustain a controlled nuclear fusion reaction. ... Reversed-Field Pinch is a toroidal magnetic confinement scheme. ... A Field-Reversed Configuration (FRC) is a device developed for magnetic fusion energy research that confines a plasma on closed magnetic field lines without a central penetration. ... A Levitated Dipole is a unique form of fusion reactor technology using a solid superconducting torus, magnetically levitated in the reactor chamber. ... Inertial confinement fusion using lasers rapidly progressed in the late 1970s and early 1980s from being able to deliver only a few joules of laser energy to a fusion target to being able to deliver tens of kilojoules to a target. ... Experiment using a (likely argon) laser. ... The Z machine at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico. ... Bubble fusion or sonofusion is the common name for a nuclear fusion reaction hypothesized to occur during sonoluminescence, an extreme form of acoustic cavitation; officially, this reaction is termed acoustic inertial confinement fusion (AICF) since the inertia of the collapsing bubble wall confines the energy causing a rise in temperature. ... Cold fusion cell at the US Navy Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center, San Diego, CA (2005) By definition, Cold fusion is a nuclear fusion reaction that takes place at or near room temperature and normal pressure instead of the millions of degrees required for plasma fusion reactions. ... Muon-catalyzed fusion is a process allowing nuclear fusion to take place at room temperature. ... Inertial electrostatic confinement (often abbreviated as IEC) of a plasma can be achieved with electrostatic fields which accelerate charged particles (either ions or electrons) directly, in a confined space. ... U.S. Patent 3,386,883 - fusor — June 4, 1968 The Farnsworth–Hirsch Fusor, or simply fusor, is an apparatus designed by Philo T. Farnsworth to create nuclear fusion. ... Pyroelectric fusion is a technique for achieving nuclear fusion by using an electric field generated by pyroelectric crystals to accelerate ions of deuterium (tritium might also be used someday) into a metal hydride target also containing detuerium (or tritium) with sufficient kinetic energy to cause these ions to fuse together. ... Experiments directed toward developing fusion power are invariably done with dedicated machines which can be classified according to the principles they use to confine the plasma fuel and keep it hot. ... Cutaway of the ITER Tokamak Torus in casing. ... Split image of JET with right side showing hot plasma during a shot. ... JT-60 (JT stands for Japan Torus) is the flagship of Japans magnetic fusion program, run by the Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute (JAERI), and the Naka Fusion Research Establishment in Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan. ... Categories: Stub | Nuclear technology ... The KSTAR, or Korean Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Reactor is a magnetic fusion device being built at the Korea Basic Science Institute in Daejon, South Korea. ... The Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST, internally called HT-7U) is a project being undertaken to construct an experimental superconducting tokamak magnetic fusion energy reactor in Hefei, the capital city of Anhui Province, in eastern China. ... The T-15 is a Russian nuclear fusion research reactor, based on the (Russian-invented) tokamak design. ... DIII-D or D3-D is the name of a tokamak machine developed in the 1980s by General Atomics in San Diego, USA, as part of the ongoing effort to achieve magnetically confined fusion. ... The Tokamak Fusion Test Reactor (TFTR) was an experimental fusion test reactor built at Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (in Princeton, New Jersey) circa 1980. ... The National Spherical Torus Experiment (NSTX) is an innovative magnetic fusion device that was constructed by the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) in collaboration with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Columbia University, and the University of Washington at Seattle. ... The National Compact Stellarator Experiment (NCSX) is a plasma confinement experiment being conducted at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. ... Alcator C-Mod is a tokamak, a magnetically confined nuclear fusion device, at the MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center. ... The Levitated Dipole Experiment (LDX) is a project devoted to researching a type of nuclear fusion which utilizes a floating superconducting torus to provide an axisymmetric magnetic field which is used to contain plasma. ... The H-1 flexible Heliac is a three field-period helical axis stellarator located in the Research School of Physical Sciences and Engineering at the Australian National University. ... The Mega Ampere Spherical Tokamak, or MAST experiment is a nuclear fusion experiment in operation at Culham since December 1999. ... The Small Tight Aspect Ratio Tokamak, or START was a nuclear fusion experiment that used magnetic confinement to hold plasma. ... The word demo may refer to one of the following. ...


Inertial confinement devices
NIF (USA) | LMJ (France) | Nova laser (USA) | OMEGA laser (USA) | Shiva laser (USA)
Z machine (USA) A construction worker inside NIFs 10 meter target chamber. ... Laser Mégajoule (LMJ) is an experimental inertial confinement fusion (ICF) device being built in France by the French nuclear science directorate, CEA. Laser Mégajoule plans to deliver about 1. ... The Nova laser was a laser built at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in 1984 and which conducted advanced inertial confinement fusion experiments until its dismantling in 1999. ... The Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE) is a scientific research facility which is part of the University of Rochesters south campus, located in Rochester, New York. ... The Shiva laser was an extremely powerful 20 beam infrared neodymium glass (silica glass) laser built at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in 1977 for the study of inertial confinement fusion and long-scale-length laser-plasma interactions. ... Zork universe Zork games Zork Anthology Zork trilogy Zork I   Zork II   Zork III Beyond Zork   Zork Zero   Planetfall Enchanter trilogy Enchanter   Sorcerer   Spellbreaker Other games Wishbringer   Return to Zork Zork: Nemesis   Zork Grand Inquisitor Zork: The Undiscovered Underground Topics in Zork Encyclopedia Frobozzica Characters   Kings   Creatures Timeline   Magic   Calendar...


See also: International Fusion Materials Irradiation Facility The International Fusion Material Irradiation Facility, also known as IFMIF, is an international scientific research program designed to test materials for suitability for use in a fusion reactor. ...

  • Garwin, Richard L.; Charpak, Georges (2001). Megawatts and Megatons: A Turning Point in the Nuclear Age? Knopf. ISBN 0-37-540394-9.

External link

  • Determination of main reactor parameters for flibe (Li2BeF4) cooled peaceful nuclear explosive reactors (PACER) (pdf)

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pacer - definition of pacer in Encyclopedia (714 words)
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