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Energy that originates from the splitting of uranium atoms in a process called fission. This is distinct from a process called fusion where energy is released when atomic nuclei combine or fuse.

Scientists propose an enhanced new model of the source of a mysterious barrier to fusion known as the “density limit”

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have developed a detailed model of the source of a puzzling limitation on fusion reactions. The findings, published in June in Physics of Plasmas, complete and confirm previous PPPL research and could lead to steps to overcome the barrier if the model proves consistent with experimental data. “We used to have correlation,” said physicist David Gates, first author of the paper. “Now we believe we have causation.” This work was supported by the DOE Office of Science.

Scientists propose an enhanced new model of the source of a mysterious barrier to fusion known as the “density limit”

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have developed a detailed model of the source of a puzzling limitation on fusion reactions. The findings, published in June in Physics of Plasmas, complete and confirm previous PPPL research and could lead to steps to overcome the barrier if the model proves consistent with experimental data. “We used to have correlation,” said physicist David Gates, first author of the paper. “Now we believe we have causation.” This work was supported by the DOE Office of Science.

X marks the spot: Researchers confirm novel method for controlling plasma rotation to improve fusion performance

Rotation is key to the performance of salad spinners, toy tops, and centrifuges, but recent research suggests a way to harness rotation for the future of mankind's energy supply. In papers published in Physics of Plasmas in May and Physical Review Letters this month, Timothy Stoltzfus-Dueck, a physicist at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL), demonstrated a novel method that scientists can use to manipulate the intrinsic – or self-generated – rotation of hot, charged plasma gas within fusion facilities called tokamaks.

Giant structures called plasmoids could simplify the design of future tokamaks

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have for the first time simulated the formation of structures called "plasmoids" during Coaxial Helicity Injection (CHI), a process that could simplify the design of fusion facilities known as tokamaks. The findings, reported in the journal Physical Review Letters, involve the formation of plasmoids in the hot, charged plasma gas that fuels fusion reactions.

Princeton and PPPL projects selected to run on super-powerful computer to be delivered to Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility

Three Princeton University-related computer programs have been chosen to run on a new supercomputer that will deliver enhanced scientific findings when it begins crunching numbers in 2018. The projects, consisting of a Princeton Department of Geosciences program and two studies involving the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL), encompass high-performance computer codes to map the interior of the Earth and advance the scientific basis for developing fusion energy to generate electricity.

Princeton and PPPL projects selected to run on super-powerful computer to be delivered to Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility

Three Princeton University-related computer programs have been chosen to run on a new supercomputer that will deliver enhanced scientific findings when it begins crunching numbers in 2018. The projects, consisting of a Princeton Department of Geosciences program and two studies involving the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL), encompass high-performance computer codes to map the interior of the Earth and advance the scientific basis for developing fusion energy to generate electricity.

Nat Fisch Wins Europe's Alfvén Prize

The European Physical Society (EPS) has named physicist Nat Fisch winner of the 2015 Hannes Alfvén Prize. Fisch, director of the Princeton Program in Plasma Physics and professor and associate chair of astrophysical sciences at Princeton University, will receive the honor in June at the at the annual meeting of the EPS Division of Plasma Physics in Lisbon, Portugal.

PPPL and General Atomics scientists make breakthrough in understanding how to control intense heat bursts in fusion experiments

Researchers from General Atomics and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) have made a major breakthrough in understanding how potentially damaging heat bursts inside a fusion reactor can be controlled. Scientists performed the experiments on the DIII-D National Fusion Facility, a tokamak operated by General Atomics in San Diego. The findings represent a key step in predicting how to control heat bursts in future fusion facilities including ITER, an international experiment under construction in France to demonstrate the feasibility of fusion energy.

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