What is Muon Catalysed Fusion?
Date- July 11 Source- http://www.starscientific.com.au/ 'Fusion energy offers a virtually limitless energy source -- just like that of the sun and stars. And while the concept of recreating the energy of the sun and stars has been around for decades, the reality has proved much more elusive.First observed in the 1950s, muon catalysed fusion is a well known scientific process where a subatomic particle known as a muon* captures two hydrogen atoms and forces them to fuse, resulting in energetic particle release and helium. Scientists have been producing nuclear fusion reactions from muon catalysed fusion for decades -- just not consistently or in sufficient volumes for it to be considered a viable energy source. Star Scientific is working towards overcoming these hurdles by perfecting a world-first technique to economically and constantly produce pions, which immediately decay into muons -- an innovation that would finally make sustained, controlled muon catalysed fusion a reality.' *Muons are the decayed products of a particle called a pion, and are the catalysts in the fusion of two hydrogen isotopes, a process which releases copious amounts of energy. The beauty of the muon is that it acts very much like an electron whose job it is to bond atoms together into molecules. Since a muon is 207 times heavier than an electron, it bumps the electron out of the way and replaces it. Because the orbit of the heavier muon is much closer, it causes the atoms in the molecule to draw closer until the natural repelling force is overcome and a strong nuclear force brings the atoms together -- causing them to fuse. This process kicks the muon out to do its job all over again some 300 times. This fusion gives us energetic neutrons, which are easily converted to heat in a pressurised water reactor -- resulting in steam which can be harnessed to create electricity. starscientific's channel- http://www.youtube.com/user/starscientific