Tuesday, October 12, 2010

NIF Completed Initial Laser Test Phase

It looks like the National Ignition Facility has completely its initial test phase at shooting all of its laser at a target, even though it isn't at full power.

In this first shot, researchers trained all of NIF's 192 beams onto the target depositing a total of 1 million joules of heat—just over half of NIF's maximum energy. To produce power, the target capsule would normally contain a mixture of cryogenically frozen deuterium and tritium—two isotopes of hydrogen. But in this first shot the capsule also contained some normal hydrogen to dampen down any fusion reaction. This is so researchers can learn more about the physics of the capsule compression before making a full shot at ignition.

And now, we will wait for the BIG BANG when they go full power.


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