The following post has been submitted by Steve H
Compliments to Wikipedia, Engineer48 and Mats Lewan – for the following contents and bringing it to our attention.
Frank – I thought you may like to post this as a separate item as it appears to explain the under-lying theory behind AR’s QuarkX and it’s production of light, heat and electricity.
It can be found in it’s entirety at Wikipedia – under Aneutronic Fusion.
Aneutronic fusion produces energy in the form of charged particles instead of neutrons. This means that energy from aneutronic fusion could be captured using direct conversion instead of the steam cycle which would normally be used for neutrons. Direct conversion techniques can either be inductive, based on changes in magnetic fields, electrostatic, based on making charged particles work against an electric field or, photoelectric, in which light energy is captured. If the fusion reactor worked in a pulsed mode, inductive techniques could be used.
Electrostatic direct conversion uses a charged particles’ motion to make a voltage. This voltage drives electricity in a wire. This becomes the electrical power. It is normally thought of in reverse. Ordinarily, a voltage puts a particle in motion. Direct energy conversion does the opposite. It uses a particle’s motion to produce a voltage. It has been described as a linear accelerator running backwards. An early supporter of this method was Richard F. Post at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. He proposed a way to capture the kinetic energy of charged particles as they were exhausted from a fusion reactor and convert this into voltage, which would drive current in a wire. Dr. Post helped developed the theoretical underpinnings of direct conversion, which was later demonstrated by Dr. William Barr and Raulph Moir at LLNL. They demonstrated a 48 percent energy capture efficiency on the Tandem Mirror Experiment in 1981.
In terms of photoelectric: aneutronic fusion also loses much of its energy as light. This energy results from the acceleration and deceleration of charged particles. These changes in speed can be caused by charge-charge interaction (Bremsstrahlung radiation) or magnetic field interactions (Cyclotron radiation or Synchrotron radiation) or electric field interactions. The radiation can be estimated using the Larmor formula and comes in the X-ray, IR, UV and visible spectrum. Some of the energy radiated as X-rays may be converted directly to electricity. Because of the photoelectric effect, X-rays passing through an array of conducting foils would transfer some of their energy to electrons, which can then be captured electrostatically. Since X-rays can go through far greater thickness of material than electrons can, many hundreds or even thousands of layers would be needed to absorb most of the X-rays.