Assoc. Prof. Dr. Luka Snoj (IJS, FMF): Fission and fusion, the two faces of nuclear energy

Datum objave: 12. 5. 2024
Ponedeljkov fizikalni kolokvij
12.15 - 13.15

Nuclear fission and nuclear fusion as the most concentrated energy sources with practically zero greenhouse gas emissions can enable the transition to a carbon-free society. While nuclear fission reactors already exist, fusion reactors are still in the research and development phase and are only operated in scientific laboratories. Both fusion and fission reactors use neutrons for their operation. In fission reactors, neutrons are essential for maintaining the fission chain reaction. In fusion reactors, neutrons are the main carriers of fusion energy and are essential for the production of fusion fuel (tritium). In this seminar, I will highlight the differences and similarities between fusion and fission nuclear reactors from a nuclear perspective. In addition, I will present the main nuclear challenges of fusion reactors and explain how similar problems have been solved in fission reactors. In the second part, I will present the synergies and potential avenues of co-operation and how experience from fission can foster the development of fusion and vice versa. A special segment will deal with the development of instruments and experiments for liquid activation that can be adapted to ITER-relevant conditions, with a special focus on the water activation loop in the TRIGA reactor at JSI. The lecture will conclude with an outlook on the future of co-operation between the fields of nuclear fusion and nuclear fission.
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