Translator:Henyee TranslationsEditor:Henyee Translations
Even though checking the status of the components sounded simple, it actually took all of the STAR engineers three days to complete all of the necessary examinations.
At the laboratory inside the mountain, all of the STAR project team members were standing in their respective positions, just like they did three days ago.
Lu Zhou stood next to the computer inside the control room, and through the floor-to-ceiling windows, he overlooked the giant steel behemoth that was densely surrounded by coils. His heart was beating out of his chest.
Soon, this reborn STAR Stellarator would perform its first experimental run.
He waited half a year for this moment
Sheng Xianfu walked toward Lu Zhou. As he stood next to him, he took a deep breath. He restrained the excitement in his voice as he said, The water-cooled divertor is operating normally We can begin the experiment.
When Lu Zhou heard Sheng Xianfus report on the situation, he nodded.
Then lets begin.
Sheng Xianfu stood up straight and replied energetically.
The first experiment wasnt going to be too cumbersome; they werent going to ignite, nor would they use hydrogen isotopes.
There were only two simple goals for their experiment.
One was to confirm that the maximum magnetic field of the coil could exceed the theoretical limit of 50T while the other was to ensure that the temperature of the plasma could reach 100 million Celsius.
The timing for the experimental run wasnt long; one second was enough.
After receiving orders to begin the experiment, the laboratory staff immediately began to start working.
The liquid helium valve opened, and as expected, the SG-1 wires quickly reached its superconductivity transition temperature.
The loud rumbling sound hurt the staffs eardrums. The current through the superconducting coil began to gradually increase the external field strength, causing them to approach the critical current of the SG-1 wires.
The feedback data of the magnetic field strength was sent to the computer. Lu Zhou looked at it carefully as it moved on the computer screen. When it stopped at the maximum value of 51.14T, a smirk appeared on his face.
The magnetic field strength of the bounded plasma was the key to solve controllable nuclear fusion. They were able to achieve magnetic confinement of more than 50T; there was no doubt that they had solved this piece of the puzzle.
The first experimental goal was successfully achieved!
When Lu Zhou saw the same kind of joy on Sheng Xianfus face, he nodded toward him.
Begin the next phase of the experiment!
Sheng Xianfu immediately said, Okay!
In the wounded coil on the streamlined track, other than the superconducting coils attached by the irregularly shaped blue insulating bracket, around 20% of the non-superconducting coils were attached using the red insulating brackets. They were mainly used to fine-tune the shape of the magnetic field in the stellarator.
As the experiment progressed to the next stage, the current in the blue coil began to drop while the current in the red coils began to rise. This would then mold the shape of the magnetic field inside the stellarator into the desired shape.
Lu Zhou looked at the non-stop jumping parameter measurements on the computer screen and said, Inject the helium!
The conduit connected to the stellarator began to inject 1mg of helium into the stellarator.
The helium that was injected quickly dispersed inside the vacuum chamber and quickly thinned out.
However, after the microwave heating device was turned on, the temperature inside the stellarator began to continuously rise. The plasma gradually began to shape and the magnetic field bounded by it was continuously under pressure. Finally, a light blue membrane appeared in the fusion chamber, trembling at a frequency invisible to the naked eye.
Everyone was in their respective seats, and whether it was the engineers or the researchers, they all subconsciously clenched their fists.
At that moment, the stellarator in front of them was like a monster, brewing the most terrifying energy on the planet.
Actually, even nuclear cores were only at 6,800 degrees.
But right now, the helium flowing inside the stellarator fusion chamber was hundreds of millions of degrees.
Even though it only weighed 1mg
This short second felt like it lasted a century.
Sheng Xianfus fists were tightly clenched when he suddenly looked excited and began to shout, We did it! We did it!
When Lu Zhou heard him shouting, a smile appeared on his face as well.
Yeah, we did it!
Even though this was only in-progress results, the achievement was still satisfying.
The next project would be to solve the damage on the first wall done by plasma irradiation.
Structural and functional materials in fusion reactors could experience severe swelling and embrittlement due to the high concentrations of radiation defects and the accumulation of nuclear reaction products. This resulted in an overall decline of the core component and joint structural material properties.
The high-speed neutrons were hitting the closely arranged first wall atoms like pool balls. However, the atoms that were hit did not disappear. Instead, they traveled to other places inside the first wall. Eventually, the atoms in the center of first wall moved to the surface of the first wall, causing the material to swell like a hollow foam.
So far, the academic community hadnt found a suitable way to solve this problem.
Lu Zhou wasnt confident he could solve this problem, but he had some ideas in his mind.
Of course, other than the wall materials, there was also the vital control system, which was the brain of the controllable nuclear fusion device.
However, compared to the material-related problems, this was actually relatively easy to fix.
After all, the demands of a supercomputer could be solved with money.
Still, it seemed that they would have to spend money from the research fund again
The microwave heating unit was turned off.
The current in the superconducting coil gradually weakened.
The plasma temperature began to decrease
This metal behemoth stopped rumbling, and this experiment was finally completed.
After all of this was over, the cheers that were previously suppressed were finally heard in the laboratory.
Many people were so excited that they began to tear up.
In order to celebrate this hard-won success and to thank everyone for their countless days and nights of hard work, Lu Zhou announced in front of everyone that he would host a celebratory dinner at the Purple Mountain Hotel in the evening.
Obviously, this was coming out of his own pocket; it had nothing to do with the research fund.
After the experiment ended, the engineers began to overhaul the equipment for maintenance. After Lu Zhou asked Sheng Xianfu to be in charge, he took off his white coat and left this laboratory that was under a mountain.
The moment he stepped out of the tunnel, he was hit by the bright rays of sunlight that pierced through the leaves of the trees.
Even though Lu Zhou was blinded by the rays of the sunlight, he was faintly aware of what he was seeing.
Suddenly, the light blue dialog box floated into his sight without any warning.
[Fusion Light mission chain.
[Optional branch mission: 50T superconducting magnet. (complete)
[Optional branch mission: First ignition. (complete)]
As Lu Zhou looked at the two dialog boxes, he paused for a second. After that, a look of excitement appeared on his face.
He completed two missions at the same time.
This was his first time ever doing so.