A Fusion Reactor Just Ran Seven Times Hotter Than The Sun

A fusion reactor in Korea was able to heat plasma to over 100 million degrees Celcius for more than 30 seconds.

By James Brizuela | Published

A lab in Korea has achieved the impossible, as their fusion reactor just ran seven times hotter than the sun. This “artificial sun” held plasma at 100 million degrees Celsius for more than 20 seconds. The Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research device was stopped after 30 seconds because of hardware limitations. Also, if you have ever seen Spider-Man 2, they might have stopped it so they wouldn’t create the next Doc Ock. The KSTAR device is attempting to stabilize ultra-hot plasma using magnetic fields so that nuclear fusion power could be made a reality. You can see this process in the video above.

We would assume that nuclear fusion power would have to be completely stable to be used in a normal setting. Still, this is a huge development. A researcher on the project, Yong-Su Na, revealed that longer periods of stabilization would be able to happen once the hardware for the fusion reaction device is upgraded. This could mean that there is going to be a lot of trial and error to develop a device that can sustain this level of power for long periods. This could provide the world with an unlimited source of clean energy. If the idea is to rid the world of damaging fossil fuels, this would be the next step to allowing the planet to be powered.

fusion reactor korea

This isn’t the first time that a fusion reactor has been able to achieve this level of stabilizing plasma. In fact, back in 2021, the Chinese Academy of Sciences fusion machineĀ held a temperature of 120 million degrees Celsius for 101 seconds. The KSTAR machine also had a massive breakthrough of its own back in 2020 but has now broken that record by holding the 120 million degrees for over 30 seconds. The plan now is to build a machine that can hold the plasma for a lot longer. The researchers at KSTAR want to achieve holding plasma at over 100 million degrees celsius for over 300 seconds by 2025. That does seem like a long time to wait, but these are huge strides in one day seeing nuclear fusion power being used.

What makes this KSTAR fusion reactor so special, is that it is a tomahawk-style reactor that merges atomic nuclei together to create a huge amount of energy. This is the opposite of what a nuclear reactor does, as it splits the nuclei. As well all know, nuclear reactors are far more dangerous and bad for the planet. Though it may take some time for this clean nuclear power to be fully manageable, the science on it is certainly moving forward.

Fusion reactors are being tested in many countries, but it appears as if China and Korea are making massive gains in the time spent controlling this super-hot plasma. Although we have to wait until possibly 2025 to see the record be broken again, it seems the devices are being upgraded yearly. We hope to see the power of the sun in the palm of our hands.