In the USA, they came up with a way to increase the efficiency of thermonuclear reactors several times. To do this, they analyzed the synthesis process in five countries of the world for several years.
The researchers explained that in order to control the process of thermonuclear fusion and obtain clean energy, you need to successfully complete a whole chain of actions. For example, first for this you need to obtain an ionized superhot gas – plasma, and then make it so that its particles can melt and release a huge amount of energy. Then this gas must be compressed to such a density that its constituent particles begin to combine with each other and form heavier elements.
To do this, physicists use tokamaks, donut-shaped installations that hold plasma with strong magnets of various shapes and powers. But mistakes in the formation or placement of these magnets can lead to loss of plasma and reduced fusion efficiency.
Scientists at the US Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have developed a technique that predicts how tokamaks might respond to magnetic errors. These predictions can help engineers design fusion plants to generate large amounts of energy all the time.
In order to improve the methodology, physicists used data from three years of experiments on a tokamak in the United States, theoretical calculations by specialists from the ITER project, as well as the results of research on tokamaks in South Korea, China, Great Britain and other countries. The researchers applied this data to a scaling law to predict how many errors might occur when operating a standard reactor.
The new method made it possible to predict errors more accurately than before. Based on the results obtained, it is possible to quickly select the optimal synthesis parameters that will increase the production of a fusion reactor.