LPPFusion’s Peer-Reviewed Paper Shows Fastest Routes to Fusion

The leading technical journal Physics of Plasmas on Dec. 8 published online LPPFusion’s roadmap to the “Fastest Routes to Fusion Energy”. In this peer-reviewed paper, the LPPFusion team shows that “the approaches that combine hydrogen-boron (pB11) fuel with high-density plasma have an easier, less resource-intensive path” to economically practical fusion energy. This fastest route of course includes LPPFusion’s own approach using pB11 fuel and the dense plasma focus device.

Physics of plasmas 1 | lpp fusion

While LPPFusion has long explained the advantages of the fast route to fusion, this paper is the first time this perspective has been laid out in a peer-reviewed journal, giving it more technical credibility. The paper is part of a Special Collection in Physics of Plasmas on “Private Fusion Research: Opportunities and Challenges in Plasma Science”, which include perspectives from other leading fusion companies. The papers were mainly reviewed by researchers at other private fusion companies. Inclusion in the Collection gives LPPFusion’s new paper greater prominence in the journal and wider readership.

The paper, authored by LPPFusion’s research team of Eric J. Lerner, Dr. Syed M. Hassan, Ivana Karamitsos-Zivkovic and Rudolph Fritsch, demonstrates in detail the basic advantages of the approaches that use both dense plasma and pB11 fuel. Only these approaches have any feasible path to capital costs less than those of existing energy sources and thus to a reduced overall cost of a transition away from fossil fuels. This is because only dense plasma approaches with aneutronic fuel can achieve compact generators with direct energy conversion.

All generators using deuterium-tritium fuel have to use expensive thermal conversion systems, like steam turbines and generators, to convert heat energy to electricity and all have to be large to minimize damage from the neutrons this fuel produces. Only pB11 fusion generators , using a fuel that produces no neutrons from the main reaction, can avoid these costs by directly converting the energy of moving charged particles to electricity in a circuit, without thermal conversion. In addition, only dense plasma approaches can achieve the energy density needed for compact, and thus cheap, generators.

As a result, the paper points out, right now the companies using dense PB11 approaches are the leaders in actual results, and far away lead in getting results for less money. The two leaders, LPPFusion and HB11, have spent only millions, not billions of dollars, yet have the best “wall-plug efficiency”—the ratio of fusion energy out of the device to energy in. (At the moment, LPPFusion’s results  lead HB11 by about a factor of 100.) 

Yet, the paper concludes, “the dense-plasma, pB11 approaches have received a wholly insignificant fraction of governmental funding and less than 1% of total private funding.”

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