Nuclear fusion occurs when two or more elements are fused together. Nuclear fusion cannot be used with elements that are heavier than iron, only lighter elements are used. Lighter elements produce more energy. Energy is produced because the mass of the combined elements is lower than the mass of the two separate elements. When the two nuclei combine, some of their mass is converted to energy.
All nuclei have a positive charge and repel each other, which makes it difficult to combine the nuclei. If the nuclei are brought close enough together, though, the nuclei’s attractive force will be high enough to combine the nuclei. The easiest way to bring the nuclei close enough to combine is by accelerating the nuclei. This can be achieved by heating the nuclei up to thermonuclear temperatures. The minimum temperature for achieving nuclear fusion is approximately 100 million Kelvin. At this temperature, hydrogen is plasma.
A fusion reactor reaches the high temperature and pressure needed for fusion. The power needed to start a reactor is about 70 megawatts, but the power produced is about 500 megawatts. Fusion reactions take from 300 to 500 seconds. The temperatures involved in nuclear fusion are too hot for a material container. There are two main kinds of fusion reactors. T...
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...ity to construct complex models of the nuclear reactor. The DEISA (Distributed European Infrastructure for Supercomputing Applications) was granted 26 million Euros for this project.
Nuclear fusion has many advantages. One advantage of nuclear fusion is that nuclear fusion produces more energy than any other type of resource. A fusion reaction is measured in MeV, million of electrical volts. A single deuterium- tritium reaction can contain 14 MeVs.
Another advantage of nuclear fusion is that it does not pollute the air with carbon dioxide like burning fossil fuels. It also does not pollute the air with radioactive chemicals like nuclear fission. A third reason nuclear fusion is better is because nuclear fusion has a very small chance of serious nuclear mishaps. Nuclear fission produces many radioactive particles, nuclear fusion produces very few.
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