PLASMAK: A Fusion Energy Horror Story

Before I tell you this fusion energy horror story, let me critique a couple of critiques regarding “fringe” energy technology:

Pascal’s Scams

Nick Szabo’s term “Pascal’s Scams” is a valid critique, in general, of what are essentially con games: A low probability but enormous future consequence (“unlimited free energy”, “global change catastrophe”, etc.) is set forth so as to justify present investments. Nick’s point is that even if the probability is as high as O(1%), it is still beyond the capacity of even professional investors to judge rationally.


Ignore low probability enormous future consequences in your decisions. You’ll go bankrupt trying to cover all your bets.

My critique of the Pascal’s Scams critique:

Szabo’s argument is, by implication, an argument against large accumulations of power and/or capital – but such accumulations do exist and are therefore under a fiduciary responsibility to perform due diligence on low probability prospects with high consequences.

Case in point: The Federal Government. Try as we might to argue that Fed investment in, say, fusion energy development (don’t call it “research”, please and, please, let’s drop the idiom “research and development” as it conflates two very different activities) we will argue in vain against the conditional argument:

IF we accept such enormous concentrations of capital and power as exist in the Federal Government

THEN they are obligated to invest (investigate) various low probability events with high present value.

(I know… I KNOW… Why do you think I’m dead set on if not to strike at the root of centralization – even more than I’m dead set on Algorithmic Information prizes as a way of advancing science to counter centralization’s groupthink mentality?)

It Violates Black-Letter Science!

Obviously, violations of, say, scientific black-letter laws like conservation of energy, are strong priors we bring to any estimated risk. For good reasons that I don’t need to belabor, their violation brings the probability of the veracity of said violations orders of magnitude below the O(1%). This is so low that many of us might not demand that even an entity with a net present value of hundreds of trillions of dollars, like the Federal Government, bother investigating so as to discount the risk of the violations being true.

However, this ignores the potential for huge concentrations of wealth and power to be overtaken by personalities that specialize in overtaking concentrations of wealth and power. Funny how that works! Such people are likely to be very expert at understanding the laws of human nature but unlikely to understand the laws of nature herself. G-loaded intelligence measures provide the potential for some individuals to excel at either of these specializations. However, expertise largely consists of knowledge acquired over a lifetime if not over history if not over evolutionary eons. These dwarf the raw intelligence of the individual. One feature of human nature, evolved since the last common ancestor of chimpanzees and humans, is the tendency toward in-group vs out-group politics. Nowhere is this going to be more apparent than in political entities like government.

So, despite the enormous power implied by independent review of a scientific finding by N independent scientists – each with an error rate of P resulting in a Black-Letter Scientific Law Probability = 1-(P^N) – there is a countervailing law of human nature that is virtually the inverse.

And everyone, at some level deep in their all-too-human-gut, knows this countervailing fact of government science is not merely true, but is increasingly a fact of life as the economic independence of the middle class, largely the class of scientists, disappears. The yeoman have always provided the foundation for scientific revolutions. With loss of middle class economic security comes dependence on concentrations of wealth and power. This loss manifests as a concomitant loss of the independence of scientific thought among scientists’ socioeconomic class! And, NO: Academic tenure in the highly politicized world of academia and its publish-or-perish ethos subject to exploitation by citation nepotists, is no substitute for an independent yeoman class.

Fair enough?

The Horror

Now if you can imagine yourself in a position where you have just testified before Congress on a newly enacted law your coalition promoted to decentralize a gate-keeping technology to the stars, you might then be able to understand why a regular Joe (or, in my case, Jim) might take an interest in “fringe” technologies with large consequences even if they have low probability that should be investigated only by those quite irregular folk granted public trust and authority over enormous concentrations of wealth and power.

Such was my interest in investigating a purportedly radical advance for field reverse configuration fusion technology called (by its inventor Paul Koloc) the PLASMAK.

The radical advance?

Artificial Ball Lightning

Here’s the image that grabbed my attention. It purports to be the first of 3 video frames 30ms apart showing a PLASMAK in motion: An atmospheric FRC plasmoid starting from its position:


I will now perform a magic trick in which I will jump to the end and you will be deceived into thinking that I just spoiled the “horror” story:

These images turned out to be, in fact, a mere video artifact arising from the way 2D CCD pixel arrays can end up behaving like 1D linear scanners. What you’re actually seeing in the curve-edged diamond shaped “plasmoid” is a time-profile of the diameter of the plasma – starting small, increasing and then decreasing to an equally small size. The plasma was so bright that it penetrated the CCD pixel mask, apparently at a 1D boundary during the “off” phase of the camera’s frames. During this phase the image is being shift-registered out of the pixel array, and each row is clocked out, it is exposed to the exceedingly bright plasma discharge!

OK. I get it. That’s a, perhaps, technically interesting story of perverse measurement. Otherwise it’s a boring story – certainly not a “horror”. However, it’s not the whole story. If you’re thinking “fraud”, don’t jump the gun. It’s more interesting than that. The larger story here borders on paranormal evil. One could, I suppose amplify to make a pretty decent scifi/horror tale with a wide enough range of elements to challenge Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea.

Returning to Ball Lightning…

Anyone who has thought much about controlled fusion has spent a lot of time thinking about spherical plasma configurations, such as spheromak (a variety of field reversed configuration plasma).

Ball lightning (or, for you true believers in “skepticism” out there: assuming it even exists) is a stable spherical plasma configuration. Plasma stability is the holy grail of all fusion approaches (that aren’t based on inertial confinement such as laser implosion, electrostatic, etc.). ABL would extend, by many orders of magnitude, one of the 3 parameters (time) of the Lawson criterion for fusion:

time * density * temperature

The Lawson criterion basically says that if you want to get energy out of a plasma, it needs to be very hot and dense – and it needs to be in that state for time long enough that the atomic nuclei that are randomly whizzing around at high speed, collide with each other. When they do, they will overcome their mutual repulsion with inertia to get close enough that something called the “strong nuclear force” dominates their interaction. That strong nuclear force is what holds atomic nuclei together despite being of like (positive) charge. When that happens, BANG, they fuse to form heavier nuclei and release a lot of energy.

PLASMAK purportedly increases not only time, but the other two parameters by orders of magnitude because BL is stable in air. That means PLASMAK, if captured in a piston, it can be compressed to whatever pressure is mechanically attainable with a gas. Mechanical pressurization by the gas law:

pressure ~ density * temperature

increases the other two parameters simultaneously:

density * temperature

This is why a particular plasma parameter called “beta”, the ratio of plasma pressure to magnetic pressure, is key to magnetic confinement approaches.

An example of the use of mechanical pressurization in a current (privately financed) FRC approach is shown in this recent video about a promising commercial fusion technology (that, incidentally, inspired me to tell this tale of horror). They form a FRC plasmoid and, as though it were in an O’Neill mass driver, grab its magnetic field to accelerate it into a funnel that, via image currents in the funnel, magnetically repels the circumference around the plasmoid even as it constricts and shrinks. Such FRC devices purport to achieve betas approaching 1 – which means the force of repulsion felt by the funnel wall is fully transferred to the plasma’s pressure. Tokamaks, by comparison, are hoping to achieve beta = 0.05!

Koloc’s FRC theory of BL purports a plasma beta of 10. How? Don’t know, but I suspect it has something to do with the topology:


Those familiar with FRC topology – especially the spheromak – will recognize the arrows as representing current fields. The torus colors indicate the gradient of helicity in its current field. Helicity is the number of cycles per distance. The blue being pure solenoidal (infinite helicity) current at the vacuum boundary of the contained plasma “Kernel” and red being 0 helicity. The plasma “mantle” – or optically thick surface of the plasmoid – is in contact with surrounding gas and is at ambient pressure.

This picture, BTW, contains within it the history of magnetic confinement technologies that progressively incorporate more and more of the confining currents into the plasma itself. The Stellarator has no plasma current. Helical currents in the Stellarator are in metal conductors external to the plasma. The Tokamak induces plasma current with zero helicity and confines with pure selonoidal (infinite helicity) currents in the metallic magnets. The Spheromak induces a plasma current field with helicity varying from infinite at the outside of the plasma ring to 0 at the center – but has a new confining current induced in the metallic sphere surrounding the plasma ring. The PLASMAK eliminates all metal conductors by placing even the spheromak’s metallic sphere with the plasma “Mantel”.

Those of us familiar with “fringe” electrodynamics (and Aharonov-Bohm effects) will note that the solenoidal current contributes no sensible fields outside the plasma torus; it contributes only pure longitudinal (curl-free) magnetic vector potential. The curl-free magnetic vector potential is often associated with “psychotronics” and possibly even paranormal technologies.

We now stand at the fringe of physics with ball lightning and curl-free magnetic vector potential.

Let the fun begin…

Koloc’s claim was that the electrons, particularly those comprising the blue current field, were relativistic. Their time dilation accounted for ball lightning’s anomalous stability. Moreover, the way they became relativistic was due to phenomena related to discontinuities involving magnetic field reconnection events as the so-called “kink instability”, a well known bane of fusion technology, resulted in turns of a lightning bolt’s helical path collapsing into one another by mutual magnetic attraction.

The evolution of a PLASMAK is illustrated as emerging from a helically wound coaxial plasma gun in this manner:

In the final frame, you’ll notice the torus forming as the turns of the coil attract each other and collapse into a single structure. Each collapsing turn converts its internal magnetic energy into acceleration of the solenoidal electrons. Their time dilation then creates an anomalously long lifetime while also creating an enormous longitudinal vector potential around the torus that extends well beyond the plasmoid.

Now it wasn’t until over 20 years later that I became aware of the magnetic vector potential as a topic let alone a fringe topic, but given the spooky stuff that ensued with Koloc…

Well, here it is:

Based on my conversations with Bob Bussard, in which he expressed the opinion that Koloc might be onto something – since Koloc had actually done some engineering work on the Spheromak at the UoMD – I gingerly approached Koloc. This was not just with regard to the fusion prize award legislation Bussard later endorsed. I had been going back and forth to Washington, D.C. to try to get more technology privatized, and Koloc lived just outside the beltway. I decided to pay him a visit on a number of occasions. He had a large garage in which he had quite an array of equipment including a machine shop. I hung out with him on those occasions watching him fabricate and operate equipment.

On one occasion I asked him if I could see the original video of the plasmoid that had originally caught my attention. He said he couldn’t find it. Too bad. Oh well, he had another picture of a plasmoid he said he had produced by blowing out a helical lamp and showed it to me.

At one milestone an entourage from Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore showed up to witness the “campaign” based on an addition to Koloc’s garage that was a more robust experimental cell with larger, higher voltage capacitors, mercury switches, etc. We even got a group picture with Paul at the center (with a beard) and me the viking hanging from a branch at the right.

The pictured Japanese guy will become important presently.

Koloc’s attempts to get his system to produce plasmoids seemed not to produce anything long-lived. Everything looked more like one frame only taken from those high speed movies of atomic detonations:


At this point I have bring up this, the very first illustration in Feynman’s lecture on Maxwell’s Equations:


There is NO magnetic field produced by the symmetric current in this illustration because it illustrates how a current can generate longitudinal, aka curl free vector potential.

The careful observer will notice that Feynman had a history with relativistic electrons moving in just such a configuration that makes lightning look like child’s play.

Can you spell EMP?

I’ve speculated that Feynman’s experiences with atomic bombs led him to believe there may be something anomalous going on with curl-free magnetic vector potential, and that he used this diagram as his introduction to Maxwell’s Equations as a kind of dog-whistle. To whom? Maybe to bright young students that hadn’t been immersed in the post-Manhattan Big Science era long enough to lose their intellectual independence.

But getting back to Koloc…

About 6 years after I had first made contact with Koloc, it was becoming apparent to me that he was having a lot of trouble reproducing his results, so I took time out from the DotCon bubble and flew out to see what was going on.

But just before I took the trip, I had a, uh… “dream”.

In this “dream”, which started with a kind of Christmas theme to it, I was in a forest and saw a pine tree. In the pine tree was a black presence. The black presence – amorphous except that it was reminiscent of a large bat – was crawling up the trunk. When it got to the top, it turned and looked at me. Then suddenly it flew straight toward me and penetrated right into my body. I was convulsing violently as though it was struggling to take “possession” of me. In my dream I prayed for deliverance from this demonic flying black bat thing. It immediately made like Beetlejuice having his name spoken – squawking loudly before departing.

I rarely have nightmares and never ones where I’m physically convulsing.

While in Koloc’s garage lab, I worked on diagnosing the wave forms of his capacitor bank and compared it to his desired wave form – which he had not been able to achieve. In so doing, I brought up a copy of SPICE to simulate the circuit. Koloc, came in at one point and, standing behind me, started giggling in a manner I had not heard out of him before, pointing at the screen of a SPICE wave form and said “Batman”. Indeed, it was a head-and-shoulders trace with what could be taken for bat ears atop the head.

I was a bit spooked as it reminded me of the nightmare … but I continued working on the SPICE model.

While I was there, the Japanese fellow – remember him? – came in and collected some equipment he had lent to Koloc years earlier. He had just coincidentally shown up from California when I was there visiting. As he was walking past me, on his way out with all his equipment piled up in his arms, he violently mouthed words to me so that Koloc couldn’t see or hear him. My best guess is that he was saying something like “KOLOC IS CRAZY!” He left and I never saw him again.

Koloc started saying rather strange things. One thing he mentioned was that the Japanese believed that ball lightning was manifestation of Samurai spirits. Something else he said was that these lightning discharges were also manifestations or portals to spirit realms.

I continued to work on the SPICE model.

At one point Koloc excitedly exclaimed, “THAT’S IT!!” while looking at the wave form of a SPICE circuit I’d designed that incorporated an enormous inductor so as to achieve an instantaneous rise time to initiate the plasma which then gradually discharged the capacitors to sustain the plasma gun.

So I let him sit down and play with the model.

Meanwhile I went poking around his garage.

Lo and behold, I found a video tape that seemed to be dated to around the time of the previously mentioned video artifact that caught my attention as a plasmoid. I was excited that I might be able to see the actual video!

Koloc had, at this point, gone back inside and I was alone. So I played the video. It wasn’t a video. It was a bunch of individual “shots” of a capacitor bank and the “3 frames” that were supposed to demonstrate a long-lived plasmoid across 90ms were in fact separate images taken in separate shots.

Koloc came back in and I casually mentioned I’d found the original video tape of the plasmoid. Koloc didn’t seem phased – only interested – and I continued to look at the tape – digitizing as much of it as I could.

Then Koloc started talking about “rats”. He had to kill rats that had invaded his garage. He got out some rat poison and went outside. When he came back in, he had a .22 – to kill rats.

Believe it or not, I didn’t immediately flee or let on I was in the slightest perturbed. I just continued blithely to do my thing. This was a habit I had picked up while dealing with people who were freaking out on acid back in college. It worked. Just make like everything is normal and avoid getting into their head space at all. Ken Keasey called it something like “Get them into YOUR movie rather than letting THEM get YOU into THEIR movie.”

Besides, I had no where to go. I had accepted Koloc’s invitation to stay in the guest bedroom.

I didn’t sleep very well, of course.

In the morning, I decided to excuse myself and stay with some other friends in the DC area. Koloc was very insistent that I not leave, but I was equally insistent that I had to.

At one point, while sitting and putting my shoes on, my exhaustion got the better of me and I slumped visibly. Koloc let out that “giggle” again. I immediately looked up at him and his expression changed as though I had caught him doing something “naughty”.

He touched the crucifix that he always wore around his neck.

I left.


Communication is hard work. Remember the audience!


Understood. Stories like this ordinarily appear in something like one’s memoirs and require appropriate investment. Like much of what I’ve published on computer networks starting with PLATO in the 1970s, I’ve deliberately set out to do so under my own name or well-known pseudonym. This I did confident in the opinion that eventually some sort of AI would be able to key on my identity and do a reasonable job of modeling my cognitive evolution. Then the job of tailoring for each reader would be automated. That investment in being open about my thoughts through time has cost me dearly in terms of “cancellation” and will never be repaid to me personally.

As for the present audience (and other audiences that, over time, have suffered my inadequate writing) my apologies as I didn’t have the time to make this shorter and still put in place safeguards against dismissing “The Horror”. I could have removed (into a separate article of its own) the initial sections on fringe stuff and just concentrated on “The Horror”. The problem then becomes maintaining credibility with the audience as I enter into an even more marginal “fringe” than “fringe science”.

Perhaps I bit off more than I could chew here.


This is a truly amazing story—thanks for telling it.

I don’t know if there’s a connection and if so, why, but in my occasional encounters with the “over unity” crowd, there does seem to be some kind of reality distortion field in effect. There never seems to be just one thing that’s weird—the more you look or get involved, the stranger it becomes.

I continue to be completely baffled by ball lightning. I even read and reviewed a book about it, and ended up more confused than ever. For something that’s been reported over the centuries by thousands of observers, my problem is the same as I have with UFOs—in an age where billions of people have photo and video cameras at hand all the time, and even the rarest of events seems to be captured by one or more, why don’t we have (as far as I know) a single mobile phone photo or video of ball lightning? Heck, the Wikipedia page “Ball lightning” is illustrated exclusively with engravings and a woodcut.


There is one, well-attested and even scientifically measured, “ball lightning” event that appears in “Observation of the Optical and Spectral Characteristics of Ball Lightning”.

The authors add this wise caveat:

Discussions.—There may be more than one type of BL
and more than one mechanism that explains BL due to the
wide range of observed characteristics [6]. Our observation
is only one event that may not be representative of all ball

The pictures such as they are:

The most obvious reason for being interested in the PLASMAK model of “ball lightning” is a pedigree of plasma configurations… a logical progression – as I described in the OP: Stellarator → Tokamak → Spheromak

What this model says about the rarity of ball lightning is essentially that it is rare for the conductive channel of lightning to form itself into a corkscrew. The corkscrew conductive channel results in a kink instability with multiple turns that is then pinched off from the main conductive channel – sort of like blowing a bubble.

If this is true, then a lightning laboratory some place might produce ball lightning by placing a corkscrew conductor atop a tower, and trigger observations upon the strike.

Here’s a picture of a single-turn corkscrew → kink instability:



Speaking of Pascal’s Scams and “fringe” technology, I wonder if anyone like The Skeptics Society (or anyone else for that matter) has bothered to gather statistics on a few key variables relevant to such “Scams”. In particular, it would be interesting to see a scatter plot for a number of such “Scams” showing:

  • Academic credibility of the inventor
  • Money invested before bankruptcy

By “Academic credibility” I mean something like a product:

Level Of Academic Credential * Proximity of Academic Credential * Reputation of Credentialing Institution

By “Proximity of Academic Credential” I mean that if the technology is electronics then a credential in electrical engineering would be proximity 1, but a credential in social psychology would be proximity 0.1. Level would be HS, Associates degree/trade school, BS/BA, MS/MA, PhD. Reputation of Institution would be something like MIT/CalTech 1, UofIL .5, Samoan Paper Mill 0.1.


Someone made a youtube video describing the plasmak patent, by a guy who came up with something like it independently and then discovered the patent.

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General Fusion is another piston compressed FRC fusion approach and now they’re claiming 2026 for operational prototype:

Even if they don’t achieve breakeven, a DT system like that could pose a proliferation risk since one of the main advantages is capture of fast neutrons in liquid metal to breed fuel.


Human beings have been killing each other since our ancestors learned to pick up stones. It has often been said that after the Biden Maladministration triggers a global thermonuclear war, the survivors will go back to picking up stones and attacking each other. The concerns expressed by the Usual Suspects about (nuclear) proliferation are simply part of their continuing effort to deny their fellow human beings access to plentiful cheap power – the sine qua non of modern civilization.


This reminds me of why I don’t necessarily disagree in stated principle with the usual suspects regarding “global change” but would prefer that people who oppose the usual suspects were occupying their positions of authority:

Sure, there is a risk of global warming and there is a risk of nuclear proliferation from fusion technology, but even if there weren’t the usual suspects would make up such risks out of whole cloth for the reasons that those who oppose them rightly point out. Given that there are such risks, we can rest assured that the usual suspects are not only inflating those risks, but that they aren’t serious about solving whatever real risks there are.

Folks who are currently out of power and are critical of the usual suspects would stand a chance of making more rational decisions about the real risks.

Why they might even go so far as to support lossless compression prizes of macrosocial and global longitudinal measures and ban all government funding of academia and government science and technology agencies; replacing them with prize awards for objective criteria as I’ve been arguing for over 30 years now.


That would certainly address the issue that President Eisenhower pointed to in his Farewell Speech – the politicization of scientific research when FedGov is providing most of the funding. Academically highly-profitable Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming is the poster child for that.

But prizes have their own problem – actually, the same problem – namely politicized government bureaucrats. Case in point was detailed in Dava Sobel’s book “Longitude”. The perfidious English government in 1714 offered a prize for anyone who could develop a reliable way for mariners to calculate longitude. Outsider John Harrison developed a timepiece which fulfilled that objective criterion … but as an ordinary peon from the wrong side of England’s tracks, he had a long & painful struggle to be awarded even part of the prize money.

A possible way of indirect taxpayer financing of R&D while cutting out the politicized bureaucrats would be to allow any individual or corporation to offset 100% of anything they class as R&D expenses against their Federal tax obligation. There would, of course, be abuses – but we taxpayers might get a bigger bang for our bucks than under the current system.


Tell me about it!

My emphasis on “objective criteria” is, of course, where all of The Great and The Good who pursue the meta-prize of being The Prize Award Nexus (X-Prize Foundation, Gates Foundation Grand Challenges, etc.) fall from grace and invite social climbers to kill their mission by occupying positions, first, as judges (to get some of that sweet sweet social status) and then as creators of prize criteria that permits them even greater subjective latitude hence even more personal prestige.

That is, of course, why I was so insistent on an objective Artificial Intelligence prize alternative to The Turing Test. The irony here is that although I am on the judging committee for that prize, the very fact that I made it so objective has been used to impunge my character! How could this be?

The cyberwar waged against the West unleashed by Disraeli’s imposition of English on India ran over those like my self who failed to focus on capturing positive network externalities of the transistor and instead focused our energies on filling in the non-obvious gaps. So when this happened in a particularly egregious manner with the DotCon bubble and given my background in trying to affect public policy, I spoke out against the H-1b fraud and its implications for the West. To the sleazy moral zeitgeist, this meant that I was a Nazi or something – but whatever I was, I was a moral monster and social pariah who simply hated Indian programmers because they were my Betters. That’s why I couldn’t get a job with the Big Boys that had piles and piles of economic rent sitting in their vaults. I was just a bitter old man who was suffering from envy.


So in the latest Hutter Prize award we had, for the first time, a contest winner that was a south Asian immigrant. It turns out the judging work fell on me because Marcus is utterly inundated with his role as DeepMind senior scientist and Matt is enjoying a rather lavish retirement (his not having committed career suicide). It was a rather involved judging process since the entry did not run properly and I had to work with the contestant to get it in shape to actually compress and decompress the enwik9 Wikipedia corpus, but we got it done after about of month of back and forth.

Then once we got it to work, I told Marcus to award the money, I asked the contestant for his BTC address, I transferred my $100/month donation to the Hutter Prize in BTC to the contestant and Marcus made the announcement, transferring the money.

It was then up to me, as usual, to go around announcing the winner to the public, as is my role.

The fact that there is no discretion in judging the Hutter Prize due to it being so objective resulted in folks disparaging my character – imputing to me a psychological problem in being FORCED to judge in favor of someone I obviously just hate due to his being my Better.

As a result of all the work I had to do because of the problems with this entry, I’ve proposed to the other judges that the judging process be entirely automated in the Google cloud. I’m working on that as a low priority since the likelihood of the next entry coming along anytime soon is so low given THE STUPIDITY of the machine learning world failing to back the Hutter Prize with the billions that should be in the prize purse.


Not your usual laser approach to fusion, let alone PB11 (Protium Boron-11) fusion involves 2 lasers:

  1. Ionize the PB11 target inside a conductor.
  2. Induce implosion current in the containing conductor.

While intriguing, the fact that the DoE just went into a “public-private partnership” with the company means it may well go the way of Bezos’s methalox rocket engine.

On the bright side, it seems to be an Australian company which means it may retain enough transgression genes from its founding stock to say “See Figure 1” to the DoE’s #SystemicMommyism

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Here is the patent cited by HB11 Energy, U.S. Patent 10,410,752 B2, “Method for generating electrical energy by laser-based nuclear fusion and laser reactor” [PDF].


A method for generating electrical energy, comprising the steps of providing a fusion fuel (1), the fusion fuel (1) being held in a magnetic field within a cylindrical reaction chamber (2), initiating nuclear fusion in the fusion fuel (1), in which a fusion flame is produced by fusion laser pulses (4 ) having a pulse duration of less than 10 ps and a power of more than 1 petawatt, and converting the energy that is released during the nuclear fusion from the nuclei that are produced into power plant power, wherein the magnetic field has a field strength which is greater than or equal to 1 kilotesla and the nuclear fusion has an energy yield of more than 500 per laser energy of the fusion laser pulses (4) that produce the fusion flame. Also described is a nuclear fusion reactor which is configured for generating electrical energy.

In the Description, it adds:

The invention relates to a method for generating electrical energy, which is based on the fusion of protons with the boron isotope 11 using laser radiation and magnetic fields and converting the energy that is released during the fusion into electrical energy. The invention also relates to a laser fusion reactor, which is configured for generating electrical energy by means of the laser-based fusion of protons with the boron isotope 11. Uses for the invention are provided in the field of electric power generation.

The boron-11/hydrogen fusion reaction (which could almost as well be described as “boron fission”) releases all of its energy in the kinetic energy of charged alpha particles (helium nuclei), which are not radioactive and do not induce radioactivity in other elements, as do the neutrons emitted by deuterium/tritium fusion. This kinetic energy can be converted directly into electricity by a “particle decelerator”, which here is called the “energy conversion device” and appears to be a spherical enclosure around the reaction chamber in a strong (1 kilotesla) magnetic field.

Boron-11/proton fusion is not entirely aneutronic. Some of the boron-11 will react with the alpha particle “ash” from fusions and produce nitrogen-14 plus a neutron. Another reaction is boron-11 plus hydrogen sometimes producing carbon-11 plus a neutron. The carbon-11 then decays back to boron-11 with a half-life around 20 minutes. These reactions account for 0.2% of the total energy released, but produce a neutron background which cannot be ignored in either shielding the reactor or neutron activation of elements in its structure. Still, it is nothing like the hellish neutron soup of a deuterium/tritium reactor such as ITER.


Can you surround the reaction chamber with natural abundance boron?

Isotopes of boron
B-10 19.65% stable
B-11 80.35% stable

B-10 + n (fast neutron) (huge cross section) → B-11 (excited) → Li-7(stable) + alpha particle
B-11 + n (fast neutron) → C-12(stable) + alpha particle

I understand that with DT fusion the quantities involved get hairy but it seems with PB11 fusion the fast neutrons may be manageable.


An overview of plasmoid technologies.

Unfortunately, they don’t go into the details that I’d like to have seen such as the way they initiate plasmoids – specifically, do they rely on fast switching to high voltage capacitor banks, they way Koloc did?

This is also the way atmospheric plasmoids of the Gatchina Discharge variety are created:

That circuit is, like Koloc’s, capacitive storage of the discharge. However, it doesn’t use an ultra-inductor to produce the fast rise time, high peek voltage with long duration driving current. Such would be the profile of ball lightning induction Koloc was seeking but failing to engineer. But then the coaxial discharge configuration is not much like the helical (albeit coaxial) “gun” Koloc thought would spin up the poloidal currents in the plasmoid, given such a discharge.

Anyway, there is some increasing interest in these air pressure plasmoids:


The significant thing about these atmospheric pressure plasmoids is that they appear to persist for at least a hundred milliseconds, which is long enough that were they to be created inside, say, a diesel piston, it should be possible to compress them by a very high ratio. If they are actually being stabilized by their internal currents and if Koloc’s idea has any merit about how those currents would be enhanced by compression…

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