A New Hobby

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Joseph_McGow-Russell
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Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2024 10:32 am
Real name: Joseph McGow-Russell

A New Hobby

Post by Joseph_McGow-Russell »

Hello everyone.

I'm Joseph, and I'm an engineer. In my day job, I do systems engineering for a government contractor. I graduated with a degree in Multidisciplinary Engineering from Purdue. I recently started my Master’s Degree program in Nuclear Engineering part-time with Penn State.

I decided in January that I wanted to build a fusor at home. I have not started construction because I just relocated across the country.

I'll have questions along the way. I have experience with pressure and vacuum systems as well as electronics and high-voltage power supplies. My struggle will be with e-mag and developing proper computer models of the fusor.

Looking forward to the help.
There's a great, big, beautiful tomorrow
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There's a great, big, beautiful tomorrow
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Dennis P Brown
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Joined: Sun May 20, 2012 10:46 am
Real name: Dennis Brown

Re: A New Hobby

Post by Dennis P Brown »

Hello and welcome. Building a fusor is a rewarding exercise in nuclear physics - creating and measuring neutrons is a reward in of itself but certainly getting into the neutron club is icing on the cake. Not sure the significance of e-mag issue.

Developing 'proper' codes for a fusor would entail measurement equipment to probe the plasma to compare to the modeling - that is a level of study few outside of professionals have managed to achieve but would be extremely interesting.
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Joseph_McGow-Russell
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Joined: Mon Mar 18, 2024 10:32 am
Real name: Joseph McGow-Russell

Re: A New Hobby

Post by Joseph_McGow-Russell »

Thanks for the welcome! I'm looking forward to learning from everyone else and applying that knowledge.

The e-mag issue I'm worried about is accurately modeling beam dispersion from the ion sources /electron guns until it reaches the grid. I was hoping to model the fusor using OpenFoam. We'll see.

Having probes and all sorts of instrumentation is what I want to aim for eventually. If I can just generate plasma without electrocuting myself, I'll be happy.
There's a great, big, beautiful tomorrow
Shining at the end of every day
There's a great, big, beautiful tomorrow
And tomorrow's just a dream away
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Dennis P Brown
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Joined: Sun May 20, 2012 10:46 am
Real name: Dennis Brown

Re: A New Hobby

Post by Dennis P Brown »

Few fusors use ion guns but some certainly do. Since most all of us use a large volume cathode, there are no 'point source' ions even for modeling. But yes, avoiding the high voltage is all of our concerns and using proper cable, shielded HV connectors and star grounding are certainly employed to further prevent such issues. Do know that above 20 to 25 kV applied x-rays become an issue and 30 kV and above, extra shielding is essential as are proper x-ray detectors.
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