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Science is a collective effort and at this conference, as others, LPPFusion received valuable information from our colleagues. While many devices are used in fusion energy research, the plasma is the same everywhere, so results with one device can be used in experiments with others. In particular Lerner got vital clues to the next steps in optimizing FF-2B function and curing its early “teething” problems.

Full report:

At the PLASMA 2019 conference in Opole, Poland July 15-19, LPPFusion Chief Scientist Eric Lerner presented experimental evidence that our fusion device, FF-2B, has met our initial goal of achieving low-impurity plasma. In other presentations at the conference, and in discussions, it emerged that the purity level achieved by FF-2B is well beyond that reached by the large tokamak experiment JET, which like the LPPFusion device, uses beryllium in its structure.

Full report:

Remember the Fusion Symposium this May where Lerner presented our fusion research efforts? The link to the professional video recording was published on Thursday night.

Eric is back from the Plasma 2019 conference, Opole Glowne, Poland. He lost 3 lbs. there, in one week. He was still jet lagged at the time of filming but here is the first report!

Great article on fusion by NJTV with LPPFusion included along General Fusion, ITER and Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory.

Our interview will be airing tonight at 5:30 PM on PBS and 6:00 PM on NJTV!

The piece will also be available online later tonight.

Eric's flying to Poland for an annual DPF conference. Even though the rest of the researchers are using copper electrodes we're excited to hear the latest from everyone and to share our latest enigmas and findings. LPPFusion's Chief Scientist will be presenting on July 19. We will not be experimenting this week. Syed will be improving our diagnostic devices, focusing on the optical path for the ICCD camera. Ivy and Jose will continue with the custom database and data analytics code development.

The interview with Leah Mishkin, the correspondent from NJTV who came to the lab today, went well. She informed us that if the piece is published, it will be about 6 minutes and will include other fusion projects.

Leah Mishkin, a reporter from the PBS's affiliate in NJ, NJTV, became aware of us after our participation at the Fusion Symposium organized by Senator Pennacchio. She's coming to the lab today to do an onsite interview!

By shot 6 this Monday, it was clear the switches were out of control...mostly prefiring...acting erratically...or rather erRATically...but by the end of the day we had a feeling the rats were not in the switches...2B continued...

(The scope manufacturer, Tektronix, discontinued drivers in 2016.) Excel 2003 has been fully kicked out of the loop (even though we had original CDs saved.) Thanks to Jose and Ivy for 24/7 support. The new experimental procedure now includes unplugging the UPS that powers the data computer prior to each shot...lots more—in progress...

Damaged computer due to shorts this past Wednesday was replaced. We’re ready to continue experiments tomorrow. A back up scope, used, was ordered from South Korea—just in case, today. A backup data computer was built in addition to the primary replacement. We’ve got an upgraded OS. Scope drivers for the new OS (we're talking old oscilloscopes) were found after some research thanks to Texas Instruments.

There are three peaks in this graph, showing multiple pinch effects (Ampere's Law in action affecting the filaments bonding together as charges travel in the same direction.) That disperses the energy, so a single pinch will get us still higher yield in a future shot (experiment).

This is a high voltage trace from shot 5 of June 26, 2019. This was the second to last experiment this past Wednesday, before our data computer fried (without showing any visible signs of it inside the case.) This is our highest fusion yield so far this year, 1/10th J with the electrodes.

On Thursday we faced a fried motherboard and began quick DIY action...which I will document in a next post as we put the new components together. We expect to be done with this quickly so experiments can resume by Monday. Stay tuned.

Sorry for the noise...basically the interpretation is the green line was not as wild as it looks...the possible shorts are elsewhere (chamber gas line, not shown here, is concerning...but not threatening)...The physical threats do exist, to machine and control room equipment...The IT team identified a high probability of the data computer frying despite the Faraday cage used for all diagnostic devices including the data computer...

Generally the yield trend is showing growth but it takes dozens of shots (experiments) for that trend to continue. It’s a bit of a dance: two steps forward one step back...with unknown steps in between. The images are of data on the scopes after shot 2 from Wednesday, June 26. See the next post for a bit of an "on the spot" interpretation by the chief scientist Eric Lerner.

In case you are wondering, here's the line on the anode we were talking about—it's on the right. It disappeared in the next few shots. We don't know what caused it.

Another way we measure fusion yield is our silver activation counter and a third way is from our bubble detectors (featured in future posts--stay tuned.)

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