Question of Sound Fusion Power Generation

  1. 1.with the hot and cold fusion under experiment level now, would power from sound fusion provides equal or more power and economic value if it has been successfully researched?

    2. what is the difficulty faced in building a commercial sound fusion generator?

    3. Future of sound fusion development?

    thanks in advance
  2. jcsd
  3. Sonofusion has never been observed.
  4. Morbius

    Morbius 1,160
    Science Advisor


    Neither "sound fusion" nor "cold fusion" has been conclusively demonstrated; and
    based on our current understanding of the physics - they won't be.

    Dr. Gregory Greenman
  5. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    I know 'cold fusion' was dismissed as false, but I thought that some folk from RPI and one of the labs had detected neutrons in a deuterated liquid (acetone or something). Has that been found to be false?

    Here is press release from RPI - New Sonofusion Experiment Produces Results Without External Neutron Source
  6. Taleyarkhan must be celebrating now!! I hope that experiment will be verified by another team.

    Astronuc do you think sonofusion can be a viable energy source in the future??
  7. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    Not as an energy source. May understanding is that the process is inherently low energy density.
  8. ZapperZ

    ZapperZ 30,743
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

  9. (if it works) is there anything preventing scaling it up?
    My naive thought would be that if its possible to get one stable bubble why not thousand stable bubbles. If it is possible to scale up the number of stable bubbles in one canister wouldnt it be possible to get enough for heat production:confused:

    The other option I could think of is to make the canisters very small(maby spherical canisters a few milimeters in diameter) and have alot of them in close proximity. I dont know if its possible to create a stable bubble in the frequence range required in very small canisters though?
  10. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    My feeling is that at the moment, the sonofusion system uses more energy than it produces. I don't see how it could be scaled up to be a useful energy source. Using sonofusion simply for a source of neutrons would be impractical with regard to power generation.

    Also, I would like to acknowledge ZapperZ's post regarding the dispute over the validity of sonofusion. It appears that, like cold fusion, sonofusion may not be proven.
  11. russ_watters

    Staff: Mentor

    Slight clarification - there is a difference between getting it to work and getting it to produce a positive and continuous amount of power. Regular hot fusion "works" - just only for a fraction of a second and without producing excess power (afaik).

    So scaleability isn't the only issue, even if fusion can be successfully/repeatably demonstrated in a lab.
  12. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    Hot fusion has been in the works since the 50's. It is the basis of thermonuclear weapons, which however, are not practical energy sources. :biggrin:

    Seriously, fusion research has focussed on magnetically confined plasmas, which are really 'hot' and inertial confinement. Both are still in the experimental stages.

    Cold fusion was found to be false, and it would appear sonofusion may also be false. Even IF sonofusion has been demonstrated, it seems limited to provided low level neutron sources. The question is whether or not it is any better than current (alternative) neutron sources.

  13. I hope that, even if Taleyarkhan is proven to be a crank regarding sonofusion, research into sonoluminescence will continue. Its a exciting phenomenon and maby something worthwhile will be the result of it all.

    Didnt think about that:blushing:

    I sure enjoy the tan the big thermonuke in the sky gives me each summer :biggrin:
  14. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    Well, yeah! Nature has demonstrated hot fusion on a big scale for billions of years, and some think that solar energy/power (PV or otherwise) is the best utilization of fusion energy, and it probably is. :biggrin:
  15. But solar power isnt exciting :frown: :yuck:
  16. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    Au contraire, mon ami.

    2006 IEEE 4th World Conference on Photovoltaic Energy Conversion in Hawaii no less. :rofl: :biggrin:
  17. They sure are good at picking locations atleast :tongue2:
  18. ZapperZ

    ZapperZ 30,743
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

  19. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    Accidentally? Careless more like it.

    There is such a concept as quality control, even for research experiments and laboratory measurements, which is essentially just good scientific or engineering practice, or something like due diligence (i.e. attention and care). :rolleyes:

    In the nuclear industry, QA/QC is mandated by 10 CFR 50 Appendix B!

    Not necessarily. It's comments like this that really bothers me about media, even scientific journals.
    Last edited: May 11, 2006
  20. vanesch

    vanesch 6,189
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Just some information concerning the detectors. I'm surprised to read some explanations given by the team.

    BF3 gas detectors are quite good (but extremely dangerous) neutron detectors - I fail to understand the comment about them seeing gamma radiation, because they essentially don't, and moreover the signal they produce in a BF3 detector is extremely weak and difficult to distinguish from the electronic noise.
    The thermal neutron interaction in BF3 liberates more than 2.3 MeV, which is a rather strong signal ; electrons liberated by gamma radiation usually deposit much less energy in the gas before hitting the wall, hence the very strong separation between neutron and gamma signals.
    The polyethylene around a neutron detector works essentially as a moderator in order to slow down fast neutrons. As the absorption cross section of the B in the detector essentially goes down linearly with neutron speed, this is done to increase the efficiency of the detector setup for fast neutrons (by slowing them down first before having them interact with the detector). But normally, polyethylene is NOT generating any gammas under neutron irradiation ! So I don't understand that comment.

    However, a LiF detector is highly sensitive to gamma radiation. In fact, it is almost a better gamma detector than a neutron detector and it is difficult to distinguish both signals. Again, however, the polyethylene doesn't generate gamma radiation.

    Normally, all this shouldn't be an issue, when calibrated against a known lab neutron source.

    However, there's a main worry with such setups, which is electromagnetic interference. Detectors which are badly cabled up can easily mimick particle detection, while what they are in fact seeing is electromagnetic disturbance from a nearby appliance.
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