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article imageHotter than the center of the sun — Tokamak Energy reaches target

By Karen Graham     Jun 8, 2018 in Science
Oxford - A relatively new player on the scene, a UK company called Tokamak Energy, is claiming a new milestone in the area after heating its ST40 device to 15 million degrees Celsius, similar to temperatures found at the center of the Sun.
The Oxford, England-based company's spherical ST40 uses high-temperature superconductors (HTC) made from rare earth barium copper oxide (REBCO) to create strong magnetic fields to contain the hot plasma. The ST40 was started for the first time in April 2017.
Tokamak Energy aims to produce a record-breaking plasma temperature for a privately-funded venture of 100 million degrees. Think about that -That's about seven-times hotter than the center of the sun.
“By working with one of the world’s most reputable engineering organisations we will turn the qu...
“By working with one of the world’s most reputable engineering organisations we will turn the question over fusion energy from if to when.”
Tokamak Energy
Jonathan Carling, Tokamak Energy CEO, said: "We are taking significant steps towards achieving fusion energy and doing so with the agility of a private venture, driven by the goal of achieving something that will have huge benefits worldwide."
"Reaching 15 million degrees is yet another indicator of the progress at Tokamak Energy and a further validation of our approach. Our aim is to make fusion energy a commercial reality by 2030. We view the journey as a series of engineering challenges, raising additional investment on reaching each new milestone," Carling said.
The ST40 is just warming up
The ST40 is the third machine in what is a five-part plan to achieve abundant, clean energy on an industrial scale by 2030. The goal of reaching 100 million degrees Celsius (180 million degrees Fahrenheit) is to have a high enough temperature to force deuterium and tritium particles together.
An early model of one of the first Tokamaks.
An early model of one of the first Tokamaks.
Sergey Rodovnichenko from Moscow, Russia
"The world needs abundant, controllable, clean energy," says co-founder Dr. David Kingham. "Our business plan is built on strong scientific foundations and this milestone is a significant step in our compact spherical tokamak route to fusion power."
Tokamak Energy has established itself as the world’s leading private fusion energy venture. The company went out on a limb by building their Tokamak reactors with a spherical compact design, a big step up from the original Russian tokamak T3 built in the 1960s. The T3 was a wide, ringed-doughnut shape, and was later proved to be far from the ideal design.
More about tokamak Energy, 15 million degrees, plasma temperature, Nuclear fusion, Science