Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Helium 3 energy comparison

  1. May 27, 2005 #1
    I am giving a presentation on helium 3 for a future energy source and i am looking for a way to describe (and compare) how much energy is released in a helium 3 reaction (D-T would be fine). some thing that would be clear to people who have no science background. (i.e. the amount of H-3 that could fit in this raquet ball would be more powerful than a truckload of TNT) something like that anyway.
  2. jcsd
  3. May 27, 2005 #2
    What's a helium 3 reaction?
  4. May 27, 2005 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    It's a fusion reaction : He-3 + deuterium gives He-4 + proton + bucketfull of energy

    Last edited: May 27, 2005
  5. May 28, 2005 #4

    Meir Achuz

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    You must mean Hydrogen 3 (tritium) + deuterium.
    The mass difference between d+t and He + n is 17.59 MeV.
    Multiplying this by Avagadro's number (for one mole), and converting to Joules,
    I get (Check my arithmetic.) 1.7 X 10^12 Joules released.
    I guess that would be written as 1.7 tJ. (That's more than I make in a year.)
    That would be the energy release for one mole (3 grams) of H3 on one mole
    (2 grams) of deuterium.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook