Tests show 'artificial sun' is reliable

Jan. 15, 2007 at 1:34 PM

HEFEI, China, Jan. 15 (UPI) -- A series of tests run by Chinese scientists on an experimental thermonuclear reactor have found "the artificial sun" is a reliable energy generating process.

Designed to replicate the sun's energy generating process, the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak fusion reactor recently garnered positive results in tests being conducting at China's Institute of Plasma Physics, the Chinese news agency Xinhua reported.

"The new tests show the reactor is very reliable, and we can repeat the experiments," institute official Wu Songtao said.

With tests set to continue until Feb. 10, the experiments will reveal exactly how far the project is from its final goal of creating plasma that can last for 1,000 seconds while giving off its own energy.

While many have disputed the project's ability to create such an energy source, Xinhua said many scientists maintain such a fusion reactor could lesson China's energy crisis by providing cleaner endless energy at a significantly lower cost.

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