The team in charge of the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) has just received an impressive magnet that would be useful for their purposes of mastering nuclear fusion.
According to French scientists, the magnet is so powerful that, as specified by its manufacturer, it is capable of lifting an aircraft carrier.
When fully assembled, the magnet is almost 20 meters tall and over four meters in diameter.
The magnet is known as a central solenoid and will be used as a superconductor to reach the heat temperatures and pressure necessary to produce nuclear fusion.
In accordance with New Scientist, the solenoid can generate a magnetic field 280,000 times stronger than Earth’s magnetic field.
“Every time an important and novel component is completed, such as the first central solenoid module, our confidence increases that we will be able to complete the complex engineering of the complete machine,” said Laban Coblentz, ITER spokesperson.
The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor is slated to be one of the largest reactors in existence and many experts believe that it constitutes one of the most promising efforts to achieve nuclear fusion.
According to scientists, this reaction promises to generate clean energy that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which would be key in the planet’s fight against global warming.
The experts explain that the problem is that it is very difficult to achieve and it has not yet been possible to manufacture a reactor that produces more energy than it consumes.