This Maine Farm is Harvesting the Sun’s Power While it Picks the Blueberries

Carey: I’m standing on a hillside. All around me are short shrubs with purple stems and waxy leaves. A brisk December wind moves through the lowbush blueberry bushes. But among the plants sits an odd sight… row after row of solar panels.  You’ve heard of solar farms. And you’ve heard of blueberry farms. But a … Read more

Fusion power: DeepMind uses AI to control plasma inside tokamak reactor

For the first time, artificial intelligence has been used to control the super-hot plasma inside a fusion reactor, offering a new way to increase stability and efficiency Technology 16 February 2022 By Matthew Sparkes Plasma inside the TCV fusion reactor in Switzerland Curdin Wüthrich/SPC/EPFL Fusion reactors promise cheap, abundant and relatively clean energy – if … Read more

Radical Idea Shows Laser Propulsion Could Rapidly Accelerate Trips to Mars

NASA and China plan to mount crewed missions to Mars in the next decade. While this represents a tremendous leap in terms of space exploration, it also presents significant logistical and technological challenges.   For starters, missions can only launch for Mars every 26 months when our two planets are at the closest points in … Read more

Fusion experiment smashes record for generating energy, takes us a step closer to a new source of power

An experimental nuclear fusion project has set a world record in generating energy on Earth using the same kind of reactions that power the sun. In the new experiments, the Joint European Torus (JET) in Culham near Oxford, England, produced blazingly hot plasmas that released a record-setting 59 megajoules of energy — about the same … Read more

Nuclear fusion: Record-breaking experiment suggests we really could build artificial suns

The Joint European Torus has sustained a super-hot plasma for 5 seconds, producing 59 megajoules of energy and suggesting that larger experiments could produce more power than is put in Technology 9 February 2022 By Adam Vaughan A white hot river of heat winds around the bottom of a doughnut-shaped machine before the searing light … Read more

Fusion Power Experiment in The UK Smashes Its Old Record in Major Step Forward

Late last century, the Joint European Torus (JET) near Oxford, UK, churned out 22 megajoules of energy in what was, at the time, a record in fusion power. Now, experimental upgrades have brought the facility into line with the technology anticipated for a major international project, resulting in the production of nearly three times that … Read more

Flying robot generates as much power as a flapping insect

A flying robot with wings controlled by a magnetic field instead of heavy motors and gears slightly outperforms insect muscles Technology 2 February 2022 By Alex Wilkins A small robot with wings like an insect can fly and generate more power than a similarly-sized animal in nature. Most flying robots, whether they use wings or … Read more

U.S. Project Reaches Major Milestone toward Practical Fusion Power

Nuclear fusion could potentially provide abundant, safe energy without the significant production of greenhouse gas emissions or nuclear waste. But it has remained frustratingly elusive as a practical technology for decades. An important milestone toward that goal has now been passed: a fusion reaction that derives most of its heat from its nuclear reactions themselves … Read more

Record-Breaking Nuclear Fusion Experiment Achieves Historic Plasma Milestone

The secret behind a record-breaking nuclear fusion experiment that spit out 10 quadrillion watts of power in a split second has been revealed: a “self-heating” – or “burning” – plasma of neutron-heavy hydrogen inside the fuel capsule used in the experiment, according to researchers.   Last year, scientists at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in … Read more

Solar Power Could Boom in 2022, Depending on Supply Chains

2022 is shaping up to be a solar boom. That is, if supply chain constraints don’t undercut the industry. The U.S. Energy Information Administration projects U.S. solar companies will install 21.5 gigawatts of utility-scale capacity this year, shattering the annual record of 15.5 GW set last year. But EIA’s projection comes amid a period of considerable uncertainty … Read more