The MIT nuclear fusion reactor is a tokamak design, which you can see here in this cutaway drawing which is hanging in the center. A tokamak, which used to stand for a Russian acronym, uses powerful magnetic fields to keep plasma from touching the surface of the vessel. The magnetic fields are produced by the coils that surround the doughnut-, or torus-, shaped vessel. The entire construction is about 15 feet tall and the torus is about 3 feet across in the middle. ITER is a global collaboration that has plans to build a much larger magnetic fusion reactor in southern France by the end of the decade.
June 29, 2011 8:42 AM PDT
Photo by: Martin LaMonica/CNET
| Caption by: Martin LaMonica
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