Fusion v. Moores Law

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Posted by Rezwan Razani on Mar 08, 2012 at 03:58 PM
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Fusion triple product has been advancing faster than Moore’s Law since around 1970.

Thanks to Don Peterson for posting a link to this energyresearch.nl writeup on NextBigFuture.  We were just looking for a graph on this subject!  Reprinted from their site:

Three aspects are important in a fusion plasma: temperature, density and the period during which the heat can be contained within the plasma. The performance of fusion reactors is therefore measured by the product of these three quantities, the so-called triple product. The best results have been obtained at JET. One important point is that the results at JET had already been predicted during the design phase in the 1970s and that, according to plan, JET achieved these results in the 1990s.



  Figure 11: Progress of fusion research throughout the years, measured on the basis of the triple product, which is a measure for the performance of a fusion plasma. The graph also shows the development of computer chips.

Figure 11 depicts the increase in the triple product throughout the years. During the 40 years of research so far, the triple product has increased by a factor of 100,000, which means that it has doubled every 1.8 years. The highest triple product achieved still lies around a factor 6 below the level required for a functioning fusion power station. By means of comparison, the development of the number of transistors on computer chips has been included; this has been obeying Moore’s Law for years: a doubling every 2 years.

Another visual:

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