New Peer-Reviewed Paper Validates General Fusion Code Accelerating Commercial Power Plant Design

June 19, 2204

New Peer-Reviewed Paper Validates General Fusion Code Accelerating Commercial Power Plant Design

General Fusion is advancing the design of its Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) commercial power plant with proprietary simulation code now validated in a peer-reviewed scientific paper. General Fusion is unique in its ability to iterate nimbly. Since 2002, the company has built and tested dozens of complex prototypes. Now, it can move even faster.

The code, introduced in a new paper in Physics of Fluids, helps General Fusion to rapidly model its game-changing liquid metal liner in a commercial machine. General Fusion completes simulations in a minute on a single computer that otherwise would take hours or weeks. No other programming available on the market can achieve this result today.

The code is a key component of General Fusion’s Integrated System Model (ISM). With ISM, the company quickly tests different designs to determine the best machine configuration for a practical and economical power plant. Known as ISM-hydrodynamics (ISM-hydro), the validated code predicts the motion of General Fusion’s proprietary liquid metal liner as it is mechanically compressed by an array of pistons.

As the company optimizes the power plant configuration, it uses the code to understand the performance of the liner in a commercial machine. General Fusion’s MTF approach to compressing liquid metal around the plasma to create fusion energy is unique in the world. It is the only fusion technology that addresses the major barriers to commercialization, including material degradation, fuel production, energy capture, and cost barriers.

“Our proprietary Integrated System Model is an excellent example of why the time for fusion is now. We are designing and building fusion machines faster than ever before,” said Greg Twinney, CEO, General Fusion. “This new paper in Physics of Fluids highlights our team’s incredible work in developing the first-of-a-kind tools we need to deliver commercial fusion in the next decade. We are making significant progress every day.”

ISM-hydro is part of a broader integrated system model, which plays a crucial role in analyzing experimental data, operating sub-scale test beds, and optimizing the design of General Fusion’s ground-breaking Lawson Machine 26 (LM26). LM26 shortens the technical jump between General Fusion’s next near-commercial machine and a commercial pilot plant. As a result, the company is fast-tracking its path to provide commercial fusion energy to the grid by the early to mid-2030s.

Quick Facts:

  • General Fusion’s Magnetized Target Fusion uniquely sidesteps challenges to commercialization that other technologies face. The game-changer is a proprietary liquid metal liner in the commercial fusion machine that is mechanically compressed by an array of pistons.
  • This enables General Fusion to create fusion conditions in short pulses, rather than creating a sustained reaction, while protecting the machine’s vessel, extracting heat, and re-breeding fuel. Additionally, General Fusion’s design does not require large superconducting magnets or expensive lasers.
  • Recently published peer-reviewed scientific results confirm General Fusion’s proprietary liquid metal compression technology scalable to a commercial machine. The results were published in Fusion Engineering and Design after the team completed over 1,000 liquid compression experiments.
  • General Fusion’s new MTF demonstration, LM26, is designed to reach fusion conditions of over 100 million degrees Celsius by 2025. It will progress towards scientific breakeven equivalent by 2026.
  • The MTF demonstration will integrate the company’s operational plasma injector with a simplified compression system. The plasma injector has already achieved the temperature and magnetic confinement times required by the new machine.

About General Fusion

General Fusion is pursuing a fast and practical approach to commercial fusion energy and is headquartered in Richmond, B.C., Canada. The company was established in 2002 and is funded by a global syndicate of leading energy venture capital firms, industry leaders, and technology pioneers. Learn more at www.generalfusion.com.


Related Story

Innovation In Action: LM26 on Track After Swift 2023 Launch

At General Fusion, radical innovation and rapid iteration come together to deliver technology that will change our energy landscape. Fusion is the ultimate clean energy solution – it is the energy source that powers the sun and stars. Fusion is the process by which two light nuclei merge to form a heavier one, producing a massive amount of energy. General Fusion’s new fusion demonstration, Lawson Machine 26 (LM26), is designed to achieve two world-first breakthroughs using their Magnetized Target Fusion (MTF) technology in the next three years:

  • By 2025, heating plasma to over 100 million degrees Celsius (10 keV) to achieve fusion conditions during compression; and
  • By 2026, progressing toward scientific breakeven equivalent – when the amount of energy produced by the fusion reaction equals or exceeds the energy put in.

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