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核聚变能源:在地球上造出一个恒星的竞赛

Nuclear Fusion Energy: The Race to Create a Star on Earth

There are two billion people in the world
这世界上有二十亿的人口
that don’t have access to regular supplies of energy.
他们无法获得定期的能源供应
Before going to give them the same quality of living
在给予他们同等的生活质量之前
that we enjoy in North America and Europe,
就如同我们在北美和欧洲所享受的一般
they’re gonna need energy
他们更需要能源
and we need answers for that.
这是我们所需要解决的问题
If the future of fusion was here today,
如果核聚变的未来就在今天
it would change the way
它将极大地改变
our energy system works dramatically.
我们能源系统的工作方式
The Race of Fusion
核聚变的竞赛
Motherboard
主板
Dear Future,
亲爱的未来
“Fusion is the ultimate energy source in the universe, and one day it will power our society.”
核聚变是宇宙的根本能源 也将在未来为我们的社会提供能量
We’ve only had the fire department of New York come once
我们只让纽约的消防队来过一次
where we generated enough smoke to trip off
我们产生了足够多的烟
the smoke detectors in the building
使得大楼里的烟雾探测器报警了
and have the fire department actually arrived
消防队赶到后
and sort of shoo us out
把我们赶了出去
while they ventilated the laboratory.
他们给实验室通风
I’ve been involved in fusion research
我自从43年前从学校毕业开始
since graduated school 43 years ago.
从事核聚变研究
Columbia University we work in magnetic fusion
在哥伦比亚大学研究磁约束核聚变
and we’re part of the USDOE funded national program
我们是美国能源部资助的国家项目的一部分
in producing magnetically confined fusion energy.
产生磁约束聚变能
Fusion is the ultimate energy source in the universe.
核聚变是宇宙的根本能源
All the stars in the sky,
天上的星星
the Sun,
太阳
all of those lighted objects are powered by fusion.
所有这些发光的物体都由核聚变提供能量
The process is really simple.
这个过程很简单
You just take two light isotopes.
你只需要把两个较轻的同位素
Hydrogen usually bring them together.
一般是氢 放在一起
They’ve react with the nuclear reaction and
它们发生核反应产生的能量
they produced a hundred times
相当于当初引发反应
more energy than it takes in order to
所需要的能量
produce the reaction in the first place.
的100倍
The research on fusion we’re doing today
我们现在所做的核聚变研究
is leading to a future
着眼于未来
where we can replace coal-fired,
我们可以取代燃煤
oil-fired, gas-fired, power plants
燃油和燃气发电厂
that we use today with fusion power plants.
通过核聚变发电厂
Publicly funded fusion research and privately funded
公共资助的核聚变研究和私人资助的
which is using investor money
都是利用投资者的钱
want to develop fusion.
来发展核聚变的
We have got to constantly look for ways
所以我们必须不断地寻找方法
to make this project move faster.
让这个项目进展得更快
Z machine is a publicly funded generator used for fusion energy research.
Z装置是一个公共资助的用于核聚变能源研究的发电机
It can creat a blast equivalent to a thousand times the electrical current of a lightning bolt.
它所产生的冲击波相当于雷电的一千倍
Right now, we’re at the Z facility.
现在我们看到的是Z装置
We’re in the high bay
我们在高湾
that contains the Z accelerator.
它包含了Z加速器
Z is the largest pulse power accelerator on the planet.
Z是地球上最大的脉冲功率加速器
It’s noisy. It smells like oil.
它很吵 闻起来像石油
This is not a clean room.
这不是一个干净的房间
This is really…
这真的是
how to make stuff happen.
如何让事情发生
If you were standing here during a shot,
如果你在它发射的时候站在这里
it would be your last moments on earth.
那么这将是你在地球上的最后时刻
The government is funding most of this work
政府资助了这项工作的大部分
because it’s very expensive, requires very big facilities.
因为它非常昂贵 需要非常大的设施
The Z machine or the Z accelerator
这个Z机器 或者说是Z加速器
first began life in 1985
在1985年首次出现
as the particle beam fusion accelerator, too.
作为粒子束聚变加速器使用
In about 1996 or 1997, there was an opportunity
大约在1996年或1997年 有机会
to change the configuration into a Z-pinch driver.
将配置更改为Z-pinch驱动程序
The Z machine uses the magnetically driven approach.
Z机器采用磁驱动方式
We have an energy storage section
我们有一个储能部分
which consists of 36 large capacitor banks.
由36个大型电容器组组成
And we’re charging those capacitor banks
我们给那些电容器组充电
up over for about three minutes.
大概3分钟
We charge up the banks to about
我们给电容器组充大约
20 mega joules of stored energy.
20兆焦耳的储能
Then we discharge all 36 of those marks banks simultaneously.
然后我们同时给那36个标记的电容器组放电
So we drive these targets from
所以我们驱动这些目标
small spatial scales of order my,
通过很小的空间尺度
my thumbnail are smaller and
我的缩略图更小
we compressed them with large currents
我们用大电流来压缩它们
and we also impose an externally applied magnetic field
而且我们还施加了一个外部磁场
that we want to compress.
是我们想要压缩的
So we’re exploring what’s called
所以我们正在探索所谓的
the magnetized target fusion approach.
磁化靶聚变方法
We store between 22 and 26 mega joules of energy which
我们储存了22到26兆焦耳的能量
is in anywhere between 26 and 52 sticks of dynamite.
相当于26到52块炸药
We hear it and we feel it.
我们能够听到 感受到
When the machine fires,
当机器点火的时候
there’s a lot of sound and the ground will roll.
会有很大的声音 地面会摇晃
I just want you to stand
你们站着
with your feet about two feet apart,
两脚分开两英尺
pointing at the center of the machine.
朝着机器的中心
So you can feel the roll most effectively.
这样子你能最有效地感受到摇晃
We’ve had coal racks
我们曾让煤炭架
fall over in the second floor of a building.
掉到一栋大楼的二楼
That’s prob about a hundred yards away.
那是大约一百码以外的地方
We’ve had picture frames wall.
我们有相框墙
There’s only one Z machine in the world.
世界上只有一台Z机器
Everything else is
其他的任何东西
pretty small, compared to Z.
和Z相比 都显得很小
This is what would, would happen on the machine
这就是机器会发生的
just after the shot that we witnessed earlier today
在我们今天早些时候看到的发射之后
and some of that energy appears as high voltages that
一些能量会以高压的形式出现
then flash over on the surface of the water
在它们返回地面的时候
as they find their way back to ground.
它们会在水面上闪过
Fusion in the 50s and 60s and 70s was oversold,
50年代 60年代和70年代的聚变被过誉了
in that it is much harder than
所以它更难
people imagined it to be first.
相对于人们一开始所想象的
You’re trying to study plasmas
你所研究的等离子体
which only exists for a few nanoseconds.
只存在几纳秒的东西
There are a lot of ways that
在这个过程中
that process can go wrong
有很多可能出错的地方
and you have to figure out.
你必须弄清楚
Okay, in that last nanosecond.
好的 在最后一纳秒
What’s going on?
会发生什么
Is it the way we thought it was going to happen?
是我们想象的那样吗
Or is something really not quite
或者是一些并不是
what we expected.
如我们所期待的事情
So it’s discovery science
所以这是探索科学
at the limit of what’s possible to do in the laboratory.
在实验室里的极限
Our goal
我们的目标
and for much of the world
对世界大部分地区来说
that a studying fusion is still physics feasibility.
研究核聚变仍然是有科学可行性的
and we may be 30 years or 40 years away from it
我们可能还需30年或者40年的时间
practical fusion energy technology.
才能实现实用的核聚变能源技术
But you obviously have to really believe in something
但显然 你必须真正相信某些事情
to dedicate your whole life to it.
才能把一生都奉献给它
The scientific standards that are necessary
需要非常高的科学标准
to get public funding are quite high.
才能获得公共资助
The projects that you try to do tend to be
你想做的项目往往
the lower risk,
风险更低
longer time scale.
时间更长
Usually the private sector tries
通常私人部门会尝试
faster ways to do fusion.
更快的方式去研究核聚变
Those companies try to
那些公司尝试着
find an approach to fusion
去找到一种实现核聚变的方法
that they think is quicker, smaller.
更快 设备更小
Well, cost less.
当然 还有更省钱
Fusion energy has the potential to provide this to the world.
核聚变能源有向全世界提供能源的潜能
But there’s no free lunch and research.
但是天下没有免费的午餐 研究也一样
It means it’s riskier.
这意味着高风险
General Fusion is a fusion energy startup with high-profile investors including Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
通用聚变公司是一家核聚变能源企业 投资者包括著名的亚马逊首席执行官杰夫贝索斯
General Fusions had a little north of
通用聚变公司现阶段投了略高于
a hundred million dollars invested today in private capital.
1亿美元在私人资本上
Fusion has been pursued a lot by governments
各国政府几十年来一直在进行大量的核聚变研究
for many decades because of the promise of the technology.
因为核聚变技术的发展前景
What is new? There’s been the advent of private companies.
私人公司的出现是个新东西
The science and R&D that’s gone on
科学和研发
in the public sector combined with
由公共部分主导的和
the pace of innovation
加上我们在其他经济领域看到的
we’re seeing elsewhere in the economy
创新相结合
when you get new news about fusion,
当你得到关于核聚变的新消息时
that naturally attracts that attention.
自然会被吸引注意力
So the machine behind me here is a
我身后的机器
prototype of the compression system that we want to build,
是我们想要建立的压缩系统的原型
so we form plasma and we compress.
我们从等离子体开始压缩
Now this is a smaller scale than
这个的规模更小
what a power plant would be,
相对于发电厂来说
So there’s no putting plasma into this.
这里没有等离子体
This is the compression system.
这是压缩系统
and it’s a central tank about a meter across
它是一个直径约为1米的中央容器
that we can fill with molten metal
我们可以在里面装满熔化的金属
and then around it
在它的周围
are these 14 big Pistons, these big drivers
有14个大活塞 这些大的驱动器
that will compress and collapse
会压缩和折叠
a cavity that’s formed inside that liquid metal.
从而在液体金属内部形成一个空腔
In the formation process,
在形成过程中
we’re already gonna be four or five million degrees C
我们已经将四或五百万摄氏度
and the compression is going to heat it another 10 20 times
压缩加热10到20倍
to 100, 150 million degrees C.
到至1亿到1.5亿摄氏度
The best way to think about how hot that
要想出如何加热最好的方法
is, is to look up in the sky and look at the Sun.
是抬头看看天空 看看太阳
This is the really the heart of the spectrum machine.
这才是频谱机器的核心
The plasma has formed from down below
等离子体在下面形成
and it bubbles up into this sphere here.
然后气泡上升到这个球体
And all around what you see are Diagnostics
在你所看到的周围
for measuring what’s going on.
都是测量正在发生的事情的诊断
So there’s large laser systems
这里有一个很大的激光系统
and then you see lots of optics here.
你可以看到很多光学器件
And those lasers are used to measure things,
这些激光被用来测量东西
like the temperature of the plasma
比如等离子体的温度
at different points
在不同点的情况下
or the strength of the magnetic field
或者磁场强度
or the density of the plasma.
或者等离子体的密度
It can be very challenging to work on fusion.
研究核聚变是一项非常有挑战性的工作
It works great at the scale of the Sun
它在太阳的尺度下非常有效
to create the conditions for fusion.
为核聚变创造了条件
But we can’t do that here on earth.
但我们不能在地球上这么做
We’re not even close to being as big.
我们甚至做不到这么大
We have to throw a lot of energy at this fuel
我们必须向燃料中投入大量的能量
to get it to 100 million degrees
使其达到1亿度
and then we’ve got to hold it there long enough
而且我们必须在那里保持足够长的时间
to react enough to produce more energy out
让它们充分反应来产生
than we put in.
比我们所投更多的能量
We’ve had decade after decade of smaller companies
我们已经有十多年的小公司
try to find a faster cheaper way diffusion
试图寻找更快更便宜的传播方式
and that had been successful so far.
到目前为止已经取得了成功
You presumably have uncovered some
你大概发现了一些
new approach, new wrinkle.
新的方法 新的利好因素
That’ll makes you think that
这会让你觉得
what you’re gonna do will succeed,
你要做的事情会成功
whereas other people who tried this approach have failed.
而其他尝试这种方法的人却失败了
The hardest thing to answer
在这场竞赛中最难回答的是
in this game is how, how soon
在这场竞赛中 要过多久
what we have a good line on is
什么时候我们会有一条好的线路
the next four or five years.
在未来的四到五年里
We really want to take
我们真的很想把
what we’re doing here at General fusion
我们在通用聚变公司中所做的
at the scale of big subsystems and prototypes,
和大型子系统和原型的规模结合起来
like this one.
就像这个
And turn that into a large-scale integrated machine,
然后把它转换成一个大型的集成机器
produce conditions, like what we need for fusion.
为核聚变创造所需的条件
So the idea that people have been
有个观点是人们对于
up against certain problems forever-ever-ever,
一些问题的想法是永恒不变的
I don’t think it’s actually true.
我不认为这是对的
We’ve as a field
我们已经
and a lot of this goes to
做了很大的努力
really good hard work in the National Labs
在国家实验室
and the public domain have
和公共领域
overcome problems, found solutions,
克服了问题 找到了解决方案
learned more about the science and
对科学有了更多的了解
made progress step by step by step.
并一步步取得了进步
Scientific breakeven is getting as much energy
科学的盈亏平衡是
out of the system in terms of fusion neutrons
在聚变中子项目中从系统获得的能量
as the energy you put into the hot plasma.
与你投入到热等离子体中的能量一样多
That’s the first hurdle of many.
这是众多障碍中的第一个
There is one facility in the country
对于国家的一个设施来说
that has a chief scientific breakeven.
它有一个主要的科学收支平衡
It’s the National Ignition Facility,
这是国家点火装置
the laser facility in California.
加州的激光装置
It’s a tremendous accomplishment
这是一个巨大的成就
and I would say Anzhi we hope to be
我想说的是 我们希望
achieving scientific breakeven
能够实现科学的收支平衡
sometime in the next five years.
就在未来的五年里
We’ll need energy from somewhere.
我们需要从某个地方获取能量
If we don’t get that energy than
如果我们得不到
the quality of life will suffer,
那生活的质量就无法得到保障
we want to have an alternative
我们想要一种替代能源
may not be the best idea in the world
这或许不是世界上最好的主意
to continue to burn fossil fuels at the rate we’re burning.
继续以现有的燃烧速度去燃烧化石燃料
So I mean one has to do something.
所以我的意思是一个人必须做点什么
One can’t just give up.
不能放弃
We, as a community, have created
我们 作为一个团体 已经创造了
a lot of the physics and understanding
用物理和理解
that we need in order to build a power plant.
建起的发电厂
The blank spaces in the map
地图上需要填写的空白
they need to be filled in are a lot lot smaller
要小很多
than they used to be.
比起以前
If we look at the strides
如果我们看看进展
that have been made in clean energy,
我们已经在清洁能源
such as solar and wind and biofuels,
比如说太阳能 风能和生物燃料上
in the last two decades,
在过去的二十年
it’s just been stunning.
就会发现这是很惊人的
The United States isn’t investing enough in energy technologies
美国没有在能源技术上的投资
writ large not just fusion.
不够大 不仅仅是核聚变
The funding for all forms of energy should go up,
所有形式的能源投资都应该增加
especially clean forms.
尤其是清洁能源
The research infusion that we’re doing today
我们今天所做的研究
is leading to a future where
正引领着我们的未来
we have fusion powered electric generating plants
在未来 我们有了核聚变发电厂
to meet our need,
可以满足我们作为一个
as a high-tech industrialized society.
高科技工业社会的需求

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视频概述

本视频主要介绍了关于核聚变能源的一些信息

听录译者

Felicity

翻译译者

H1

审核员

审核员YX

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knrHPneSN10

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