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Nuclear Science and Engineering
Fusion Science and Technology
Advanced reactors: Now comes the hard part
Designing a reactor is complicated but building one may be harder. Even companies that have had lots of practice haven’t always done it well. And all the power reactors in service today were built by companies that had years of experience in other kinds of big steam-electric power plants. In contrast, some of the creative new designs now moving toward commercialization come from start-ups that have never built anything at all. How should they prepare?
I. Funaki, K. Ueno, H. Yamakawa, Y. Nakayama, T. Kimura, H. Horisawa (19P04)
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 51 | Number 2 | February 2007 | Pages 226-228
Technical Paper | Open Magnetic Systems for Plasma Confinement | dx.doi.org/10.13182/FST07-A1357
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Magnetic sail (MagSail) is a next-generation deep space propulsion system, which uses the energy of the solar wind. The MagSail produces an artificial magnetic field and captures the energy of the solar wind plasma to propell a spacecraft in the direction of the solar wind. In order to conduct a scale-model experiment of the plasma flow of a MagSail, we developed a solar wind simulator based on a magnetoplasmadynamic arcjet, which obtained a high density (~1018 m-3) and high velocity (~60 km/s) plasma flow in a quasi-steady mode of about 1 ms duration. Based on scaling considerations, a solenoidal coil (18 mm in diameter and the magnetic flux density at the coil center ~ 1.9 T) was designed and was immersed into the plasma flow. A magnetic cavity, which is very similar to that of the geomagnetic field, was observed, although the magnetic cavity of MagSail is usually much smaller than the geomagnetic cavity of the Earth.