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(Daily Mail)   Thirteen-year-old becomes youngest person in the world to build a nuclear fusion reactor, promises not to become a super villain   (dailymail.co.uk) divider line 121
    More: Cool, nuclear fusions, nuclear reactors, fusion reactors, Hadrons, restricted areas, nursing student, nuclear power stations, tritium  
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10861 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Mar 2014 at 8:01 PM (42 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



121 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-03-05 07:13:11 PM  
Let's put him in charge.
 
2014-03-05 07:40:32 PM  
His mom built it for him.
 
2014-03-05 07:55:36 PM  
Cool your jets. The safety's on.
 
2014-03-05 08:04:53 PM  
Hechuva job, Browney!
 
2014-03-05 08:05:14 PM  
Seen it.

http://m.imdb.com/title/tt0091472/
 
2014-03-05 08:06:25 PM  
Head teacher Jim Hourigan said: 'I was a little nervous when Jamie suggested this but he reassured me he wouldn't blow the school up'

If you can't trust a 13-year-old who can you trust?
 
2014-03-05 08:08:28 PM  
Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.
 
2014-03-05 08:11:34 PM  
www.unpopularscience.co.uk

/Get it?
 
2014-03-05 08:17:03 PM  
Wasn't this a 90s movie with that guy from 3rd rock from the Sun?
 
2014-03-05 08:17:08 PM  
Martin Prince?
 
2014-03-05 08:17:43 PM  

Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.


It would require a lot of deuterium and a lot more energy for that to happen. Lots of people are making star in a jar type reactors. You can even use a peanut butter jar and still be safe.
 
2014-03-05 08:19:17 PM  
scientist.
way older than him.
understood almost none of that.

incredible!
 
2014-03-05 08:19:53 PM  
NEEEERRRRRRRRRD
 
2014-03-05 08:20:37 PM  
Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.
 
2014-03-05 08:22:02 PM  

jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.


Reading is hard...
 
2014-03-05 08:23:00 PM  

jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.


If you had read TFA, it mentions that his teacher helped him come up with the 3000 British pounds for materials.
 
2014-03-05 08:23:28 PM  
static.tvtropes.org
Next year's project.
 
2014-03-05 08:23:52 PM  

Dingleberry Dickwad: jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.

If you had read TFA, it mentions that his teacher helped him come up with the 3000 British pounds for materials.


Er, headmaster, which I guess is similar to an American principal.
 
2014-03-05 08:24:27 PM  

Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.


To have a fusion bomb go off, first you need a fission bomb to go off.

A Fat Man style implosion device is the blasting cap in the Teller-Ulam Design.

library.thinkquest.org
 
2014-03-05 08:24:44 PM  
img.fark.net
 
2014-03-05 08:25:12 PM  
Came for Manhattan project, leaving satisfied...
 
2014-03-05 08:25:35 PM  

Dingleberry Dickwad: jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.

If you had read TFA, it mentions that his teacher helped him come up with the 3000 British pounds for materials.


Unless he got the stuff used, that still wouldn't totally cover it.
 
2014-03-05 08:26:18 PM  
img.fark.net
And the winner is...
 
2014-03-05 08:28:08 PM  
The chick standing next to him looks like she fused with a drowned manatee.
 
2014-03-05 08:29:08 PM  
 
2014-03-05 08:29:29 PM  

jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.


No, it isn't. The most expensive part would probably be the vacuum chamber and the pump. I don't know the cost of deuterium, but you'd need very little...it's a vacuum, alter all.

Fusion's easy. The hard part is initiating fusion and having it self-sustain where it releases more energy than you've put in to kick it off.

/The Sun is there.
 
2014-03-05 08:31:13 PM  
i.dailymail.co.uk

Mum, I'm nipping around to the town hall to change my name. I fancy "Hank Scorpio".
 
2014-03-05 08:32:09 PM  

jigger: Dingleberry Dickwad: jigger: Where did he get the equipment and materials? That shiat is expensive.

If you had read TFA, it mentions that his teacher helped him come up with the 3000 British pounds for materials.

Unless he got the stuff used, that still wouldn't totally cover it.


Well a lot of it is pinball machine parts.
 
2014-03-05 08:32:35 PM  
Urkel already did it.
 
2014-03-05 08:36:34 PM  

Valiente: The most expensive part would probably be the vacuum chamber and the pump.


Vacuum pumps are farking expensive. If he needs to go to high vacuum, he'll need two pumps. HV power supplies of high precision are expensive. Maybe he found good deals on used stuff.

Look, I'm not trying to start an argument about this. I thought maybe his parents bought him some expensive toys, but it looks like the school did.
 
2014-03-05 08:37:57 PM  
A couple Kickstarter accounts and this kid can rule the world
 
2014-03-05 08:41:33 PM  
Ther may still be hope for the gene pool
 
2014-03-05 08:45:24 PM  

Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.


There's no chain reaction taking place, nor any way for it to occur in that design.

It's a few orders of magnitude away in energy input required.
 
2014-03-05 08:53:51 PM  
Looks like it's harder to make a radio from scratch, than fuse to hydrogens with that design.  I'd give him the "A" for ambition and drive to make it, but sounds like his design is largely the work of others.
 
2014-03-05 08:54:51 PM  

TheDirtyNacho: Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.

There's no chain reaction taking place, nor any way for it to occur in that design.

It's a few orders of magnitude away in energy input required.


He's 13. Give him a little time
 
2014-03-05 08:56:11 PM  

jigger: Valiente: The most expensive part would probably be the vacuum chamber and the pump.

Vacuum pumps are farking expensive. If he needs to go to high vacuum, he'll need two pumps. HV power supplies of high precision are expensive. Maybe he found good deals on used stuff.

Look, I'm not trying to start an argument about this. I thought maybe his parents bought him some expensive toys, but it looks like the school did.


I know, but as it's the Mail, we don't know the pressures used (or required, off the top of my head), nor do we know what amperage "18,000 volts" was running at. I do know it's relatively trivial to make Tesla coils and Van de Graff generators; hell, there's videos on YouTube, usually in the same area as "how to clip together 200 half-dead 9V batteries to do some brief spot welding!" So I don't consider HV power so difficult.

There's also the possibility that there was a connection whereby some of this gear was leased or borrowed from a lab or university. I borrowed a 2 KW laser for the weekend for a science experiment in high school...

So it's not crazy that this kid was able to Tom Swift the rig together. I'd be interested to see where he goes next. The British used to be quite clever at this sort of thing.
 
2014-03-05 08:56:42 PM  

Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.


Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Wow.

No. That can't happen. Not as in it's unlikely, or expensive. It's literally impossible with that setup. The extra gas would fark it all up.

Of course if someone could turn a garage fusor into a bomb, they would be the greatest hero in history.
 
2014-03-05 08:57:27 PM  

TheDirtyNacho: Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.

There's no chain reaction taking place, nor any way for it to occur in that design.

It's a few orders of magnitude away in energy input required.


He's 13. Proof of concept is probably going to suffice for him to get a pass. Besides, teachers get nervous around the term "chain reaction".
 
2014-03-05 08:57:31 PM  
cdn.static.ovimg.com

img1.wikia.nocookie.net

i1.ytimg.com

(Brainchild from 'The Tick')
 
2014-03-05 09:00:46 PM  

Valiente: TheDirtyNacho: Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.

There's no chain reaction taking place, nor any way for it to occur in that design.

It's a few orders of magnitude away in energy input required.

He's 13. Proof of concept is probably going to suffice for him to get a pass. Besides, teachers get nervous around the term "chain reaction".


Not good teachers.
 
2014-03-05 09:01:22 PM  
Now there's four thousand and ONE holes in Blackford, Lancashire.
 
2014-03-05 09:02:55 PM  
static.comicvine.com
 
2014-03-05 09:03:19 PM  
But when 13-year-old Jamie Edwards informed his stunned headmaster of his plan to build a nuclear reactor in a classroom, the obvious question was: 'Will it blow the school up?'

I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume that this kid has other, better, teachers.
 
2014-03-05 09:05:35 PM  

Rozotorical: NEEEERRRRRRRRRD


Yeah, let's all pick on the kid who can fire off a thermonuclear device.

/Suddenly, I'm his best bud
//At lunch, he gets all my tots
 
2014-03-05 09:05:59 PM  
From what I've read over the years if you don't mind scrounging you can build one for less than $1000 depending on how sophisticated you want to get. This kid was doing this for a school project and wanted it to look professional so that's where the price tag probably came from.
As far as his understanding of exactly what he was building and what it was designed to do well...
It's a shame they couldn't just take the higher editorial ground and omit the:

Jamie said: 'I heard the Geiger counter rapidly go up and I was "What is that?",' he said in the afterglow of success.

At least his school is interested that he's interested. That's a good start.
 
2014-03-05 09:09:13 PM  
Wake me up when he exceeds the Lawson criterion for deuterium - deuterium fusion (hint: it's minimum occurs around 1 billion Kelvin.)  Below that, the system requires more energy to operate than it produces.

Still, where does a 13 year old get deuterium?  That stuff is not dangerous, but it's expensive.
 
2014-03-05 09:09:55 PM  

Barry Lyndon's Annuity Cheque: Someone please allay my fears that someone can easily turn that into a small nuclear bomb by simply upping the deuterium pressure in the canister.


You can take comfort from history: this has been a very popular stock science experiment for kids since the 1940s, its popularity only tapered off in the '70s and up because the materials could no longer be gotten easily for free at the junk-yard.

It's essentially one-step up from a baking-soda volcano in terms of technical difficulty and the claim that 13 years is the youngest ever to do it is a blatant lie, it was the physics equivalent of an "eight years and up" chemistry set through most of the 50s.

Basically, while it  is a pretty awesome experiment and this kid deserves an A, if this and its variants were remotely dangerous the 60s would have been less about sexual revolutions and more about climbing slowly back to civilization from a land every square inch of which had been scorched bare by the force of the fusing atom.

// This is why articles labeling kids that do this "geniuses" make me laugh, too.  It requires some technical skill, but it's less Einstein and more auto mechanic.
 
2014-03-05 09:11:27 PM  
ts3.mm.bing.net

HAAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMMMMMMMEEEEEEEERRRRRRRR!
 
2014-03-05 09:11:55 PM  
Getting harder to find used pinball parts.

Used Pruis parts?
 
2014-03-05 09:12:45 PM  

Mr. Oizo: Wake me up when he exceeds the Lawson criterion for deuterium - deuterium fusion (hint: it's minimum occurs around 1 billion Kelvin.)  Below that, the system requires more energy to operate than it produces.

Still, where does a 13 year old get deuterium?  That stuff is not dangerous, but it's expensive.


School ponied up 3,000 English pounds.
 
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