China is all about artificial celestial bodies at the moment! Just weeks after we were stunned to learn the country was creating a fake moon, we’re finding out that its earth-based “sun simulator” is producing temperatures over 100 million degrees Celsius.
Now imagine for a minute if we could replace fossil fuels with our very own stars! And we’re not talking about something as commonplace as solar power, either.
Hardcore, Real-Deal Nuclear Fusion
This is hardcore, real-deal nuclear fusion and it’s actually happening at the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak, also known as EAST.
EAST is a fusion reactor based in Hefei, China and it can now create temperatures more than six times as hot as the sun.
It Was Thought ‘Impossible’ Until Now
Fusion occurs when two lightweight atoms combine into a single, larger one, releasing energy in the process.
It sounds simple enough, but it’s not easy to pull off! Like two opposing magnets, those positive atoms repel each other and resist interacting.
The Awesome Power of the Sun
Stars, like our sun, have a great way of overcoming this repulsion — it’s their massive size, which creates a tremendous amount of pressure in their cores.
The atoms deep inside the stellar furnace are forced closer together making them more likely to collide.
Until recently, scientists didn’t think it was possible to recreate that kind of pressure here on Earth. But then China made their announcement…