Científicos norteamericanos han logrado alcanzar la temperatura récord de 111 millones de grados centígrados, un paso clave hacia el dominio de la fusión nuclear, disparando al mismo tiempo 192 haces.
The National Ignition Facility, located at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, is the world’s largest laser system… 192 huge laser beams in a massive building, all focused down at the last moment at a 2 millimeter ball containing frozen hydrogen gas. The goal is to achieve fusion… getting more energy out than was used to create it. It’s never been done before under controlled conditions, just in nuclear weapons and in stars. We expect to do it within the next 2-3 years. The purpose is threefold: to create an almost limitless supply of safe, carbon-free, proliferation-free electricity; examine new regimes of astrophysics as well as basic science; and study the inner-workings of the U.S. stockpile of nuclear weapons to ensure they remain safe, secure and reliable without the need for underground testing.
The National Ignition Facility, the world’s largest laser system, located at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, was featured in the BBC broadcast “Horizon” hosted by physicist Brian Cox. Here is the NIF portion of the program, which was entitled “Can We Make A Star On Earth?” This video is used with the express permission of the BBC.
Star Power on Earth: Path to Clean Energy Future
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory’s “Science on Saturday” lecture series presents Ed Moses, Director of the National Ignition Facility, discussing the world’s largest laser system and its potential impact on society’s upcoming energy needs.
It’s the largest laser beam in the world and it’s being built in the Bay Area. The National Ignition Facility at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory will shoot tremendous bursts of energy at an area the size of a pencil eraser. The goal? To recreate fusion — which powers the sun and some nuclear bombs — perhaps harnessing a new source of clean energy for the 21st century.
Imagine a sphere much smaller than a pea releasing enough energy to supply all of the electricity needs of the United States for a brief moment in time. How could this be possible? At the National Ignition Facility, a huge laser in Livermore, California, scientists and engineers are nearly ready to make this a reality. Edward Moses, the Project Manager at National Ignition Facility, explains how energy can be compressed to extreme power levels to potentially provide for a future of clean energy for our world.
A collection of short videos regarding various aspects of the National Ignition Facility.
KDP Crystal Growth
Watch a synthetic seed crystal grow into an 800-pound potassium dihydrogen phosphate (KDP) crystal for use in the National Ignition Facility.
Optical Processing Facility
This video shows the painstaking process of preparing lenses, crystals and other optics for installation in NIF.
Optics Assembly Building
Watch technicians in clean-room body suits install a lens into a line replaceable unit for installation in a NIF beamline.
In this video technicians assemble and align the components of NIF preamplifier modules, or PAMs.
Technicians are shown testing the plasma electrode Pockels cell, or PEPC, a key component in the NIF beamline.
Target Chamber Construction
Watch the huge NIF target chamber being assembled and lifted into place in the target bay.
Target Chamber Exterior
This video shows the locations on the NIF target chamber where the final optics assemblies will be attached.
Target Chamber Interior
Ride along with NIF technicians as they take you inside the target chamber on a specially designed lift.
Watch and listen as NIF Control Room operators prepare for a laser shot.
See how NIF’s unique deformable mirrors correct for aberrations in the laser beam.