ECE 4840 - Introduction to Controlled Fusion: Principles and Technology

(crosslisted) AEP 4840 , MAE 4590  
Spring. 3 credits. Student option grading.

Prerequisite: ne of the following: PHYS 1112 , PHYS 2213 , PHYS 2214 , or equivalent background in electricity and magnetism and mechanics. Co-meets with ECE 5840 .

D. Hammer.

Introduction to the physical principles and various engineering aspects underlying power generation by controlled fusion. Topics include: fuels and conditions required for fusion power and basic fusion-reactor concepts, fundamental aspects of plasma physics relevant to fusion plasmas and basic engineering problems for a fusion reactor, and an engineering analysis of proposed magnetic and/or inertial confinement fusion-reactor designs.

Outcome 1: Understand the scientific basis for controlled fusion by both magnetic confinement and inertial confinement approaches, as well as the technological requirements for practical electric power generation by the controlled fusion process.

Outcome 2: Be able determine the energy release of any nuclear reaction or reaction chain using the mass-energy relationship, and be able to solve well-posed engineering problems in plasma physics as applied to controlled fusion using Maxwell's equations and the equations of motion of charged particles in electric and magnetic fields.

Outcome 3: Be able to solve well-posed engineering problems in energy generation by controlled fusion having to do with the properties of materials in the presence of neutron irradiation and other relevant processes.

Outcome 4: Understand the fundamental role played by energy in our society and in the developing world, the potential role fusion can play, and the reasons that it is potentially more attractive than fission-based electric power generation.

Outcome 5: Be able to determine the state-of-the-art of different aspects of fusion reactor design by independent study using books, journals, conference proceedings, reports on the web and personal communication with experts.

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