The Hull prize!

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Richard Hull
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The Hull prize!

Post by Richard Hull » Mon Mar 26, 2007 7:04 pm

I am now offering a prize of $200.00 in cash for any AMATEUR fusioneer who builds and operates a true D-D, Polywell device where the power input to fusion energy output RATIO exceeds that of the best run produced by the Rosenstiel simple electrostatic fusor over a power integrated, continuous, 3 minute run.

Naturally, photographic proof is demanded as was that of Jon Rosenstiel and his device, preferably with a visit from another informed and capable party, (much as in the case of Carl Willis' visit to see and investigate Jon's device). This would be to affirm that instrumentation and all is in order.

The energy input of the polywell will also include all magnetic energy as well as the acceleratory energy.

Not included in the energy summary will be any instumentational or vacuum pump energy of simple ancillary equipment needed to supply vacuum or take data.

Only that energy necessary to make the device function, (set up all fields, ionize and accelerate), and do fusion will need be summed. This includes energy for ion sources, filaments, bias supplies, magnet drive, HV supplies, etc.


A second separate prize of $100.00 is offered for the first AMATEUR fusioneer to actually do and demonstrate, via good instumentation and clear photographs, P-B11 fusion and the production of the expected alpha particles in a fusor type device.

The fusion rate must rival but not necesarily be exactly equal to the D-D rates commonly seen in amateur fusors across the board. (~200,000 fusions per second P-B11)

In both cases, above, you need not be within even 9 orders of magnitude of breakeven to win! Your finished device can still perform like a power hungry piece of crap and you can still take my money!

Based on what I have seen and heard, I plan on taking this money to the grave with me.

Nonethless, gentleman, it is there for the taking.

Admittedly, it is not much, but it might move someone to reach for it more to prove my skepticism unfounded and to make me eat crow than to enrich themeselves.

Plus, quite possibly, this announcement might just make me the first person in world history to openly announce a cash, fusion milestone prize!

Richard Hull

P.S. Hell, I could probably even open this one up to the G-- D----- pro's and never have to pay out. But, what th' hell, they've had their shot for 60 years now. It is the amateurs turn.
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Addendum 10 April 2007.

Carl Willis has now signed on to contribute! The, now, $400.00 "polywell" prize is renamed the Hull-Willis Prize or H-W prize. A lot of details have been ironed out in the ensuing posts below. Here are the current prize rules.

1. Amateur fusioneers that are self-funded are the only people eligible for the prize.
2. The winning device will be a polywell device with magnetic trapping, as in the Bussard device. (no inner grid allowed)
3. It must use D-D fuel only.
4. It must produce or exceed 3750 fusions/second/watt iput. (1875n/s/watt)
5. It must produce at the above level continuously for 3 minutes.

The input wattage will be defined as the actual energy needed to energize the device, establish all fields and create all ions and electrons within the device inorder to do fusion at the above specified level.

Energy consumed in all instrumentation and vacuum pumps of all types, are not to be part of the above energy of fusion calculation.

Pulsed or burst mode operation is not allowed for this or the P-B11 prize. we want to see both competition systems work rather more continuously like the simple amateur fusor. Any operation that exceeds more than 1000 pulses per second will be considered continuous provided it can run for 5 minutes or more.

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Addendum January 2009

My part of the Hull-Willis prize and the Hull, P-B11 prize will only be offered until such time as I retire or leave the workplace, as I will be on a limited and fixed income well below my current employed status paycheck. Currently, this looks to be the case in April 2014 time frame, should I still be kickin'. So, get out there and polywell yerself ta' death or go for the illusive, much talked about P-B11 aneutronic prize.

No! I will not set aside the money now and lock down $200.00 of my money that will, surely, never be awarded. As long as I work, I can pull it outta' my wallet if needed. Meanwhile, I'll use that $200.00 for more real worldly endeavors and pleasures like some new conflat gaskets or some Jack Daniels sippin' whiskey.

Nautrally, my part of the prize might be picked up by another equally curmudgeonly naysayer after my retirement to keep the false hope of polywell and P-B11 in amateur hands alive.

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Addendum August 2009

It is not my job to design your detection instrumentation, especially for the P-B11 prize!
Suffice it to say the detection methodology for the alphas will have to pass muster by a panel of the better metrologists here and be defended by the claimant.

Finally, we feel certain that boosters of these methodologies would certainly feel that they might equal the mean fusion rates of the crummy old amateur fusors they seek to replace with their bold and imaginative ideas.

RH
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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X-Prize for fusion?

Post by denergyguy » Mon Mar 26, 2007 7:46 pm

This is very interesting. I've been wondering for awhile why nobody has created an X-Prize for fusion. I think it is "more" important than the privatization of the space industry. In fact if one of these technologies were to become viable it could revolutionize the space industry as we know it. I hope somebody does pick up the gauntlet. From my readings in this group, there are a lot of talented amateurs out there. I bet if they put together a group project they could even do a WB-7 or 8 on a shoestring budget.

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Frank Sanns
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Frank Sanns » Mon Mar 26, 2007 8:01 pm

It's the "H Prize". Great idea Richard!

Frank S.

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Richard Hull
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Richard Hull » Mon Mar 26, 2007 8:51 pm

Pitable though it may be, the guantlet is thrown down. We shall see, what we shall see come of it.

There is a fusion prize!

I like the H prize contraction, Frank, though it sounds grandiose.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by DaveC » Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:01 pm

It IS a great idea! Good going Richard!!

A short but related tale to tell:
Everyone is no doubt acquainted with the "Gossamer Condor" and the later "Gossamer Albatross" the two pedal powered aircraft that won the Kremer Prize of $100K and whatever the prize money was for crossing the English Channel.

I don't know the exact date the first prize money of $50K was offered by Kremer, who I think was a properous businessman, but it was early 1950's. The prize stood for about 35 yrs, eventually being raised to $100k, since no one had been able to claim it.

When Paul McCready and associates at Aero-vironment took it on as personal quest, it was only a matter of a bit over a year before they had more or less learned the key facts and used them to build the successful aircraft.

I was priviledged to work in a research group, with a boss who was a personal friend of Dr McCready. He arranged for a department research seminar so we could hear firsthand how the successful concept was born, and how it was turned into hardware. We also got to see the original 16mm color film of the actual run for the prize money.

It was a moving tale, about combining simple, broad insights about energy, aerodynamic facts, hang gliding experience, the soaring habits of hawks and human ergonomics.

What I found most interesting was the manner in which McCready and his colleagues followed the lead of factual information, not speculation. The path led dramatically away from conventional wisdom, the tried and true, (but hitherto unsuccessful) approaches. Once the path was elucidated, it was perfectly obvious!

The idea itself was born while McCready was hang gliding and mulling over the energy it took to bring the sink rate to zero (i.e.: fly) Hawks could do it with the energy of a thermal in the air....

By the time he landed, he had figured it was a do-able thing....along a certain path... then all that remained was the successful assembly of the proper hardware. In carrying this out, the error of conventional, "pedal-powered-aircraft" wisdom was seen, and avoided.

Is there a lesson here? I think so. And the whole process began with a prize.

Dave Cooper

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Steven Sesselmann
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Steven Sesselmann » Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:02 pm

Richard,

What is the Q for Jon's best run so far?

Steven
http://www.gammaspectacular.com - Gamma Spectrometry Systems
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Richard Hull
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Richard Hull » Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:28 pm

Thanks for the boost and kind words Dave. What began as a real, but tongue in cheek, knife twist looks like it might blossom as others are talking about throwing in similar sums!!

What have I created?... Perhaps a monster that will devour me in the end, though certainly not leave me destitute. Many a snowball has rolled over its creator.

As for the Q of Jon's rig, I will let him cull his best run data and report it to us which might well be expressed in HV supply watts to Isotropic emission nuetron counts. (doubled for the number of fusions per watt.) I woud think we are talking ~ 4000 fusions/sec/joule input, or so.

The best I ever did was about 1500 fusions/sec/joule. Jon be da' man. (with Carl lookin' to grind his butt into the dirt.) There is room for non-energy demanding improvments to the odl Hirsch-Meeks or "simple fusor", yet.

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Carl Willis
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Carl Willis » Mon Mar 26, 2007 10:27 pm

Hi Richard,

This is a good idea. I'd like to toss in $200 on top of yours for a fusing amateur Polywell if that's acceptable to you. I would keep the money for my own effort if I thought it might actually happen, but I'm simply not in a position to be a contender here!

I do think the criteria for winning should be more concrete, and maybe a bit more approachable.

1. For starters, I would suggest that the winning device should be capable of only 500,000 n / s, +/- 20%. This is easily detectable, easily quantifiable within reasonable bounds, and is useful in terms of studying operation. Anything less becomes hard to verify, anything more I think is needlessly raising the bar. The uncertainty is given so that a person understands that a winning measurement will consist of more than just a few counts, i.e. satisfies a statistical burden of proof.

2. Since this is going to be a hobbyist prize, we ought to require that to win the prize, all construction and operation details are to be non-proprietary and subject to scrutiny. In order for the builder to win the prize, he has to be willing to publish these details. This does not preclude him from filing a provisional patent application if he so desires, it just means he can't keep the details, the know-how, and so forth to himself for longer than is necessary to file. This is to prevent situations where someone says, "look, my machine makes neutrons but I'm not going to show you how I cool my magnets, etc." In the spirit of an open-source community, full details must be divulged.

Again, an excellent idea Richard, and I hope some enterprising soul will take the bait.

-Carl
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Jon Rosenstiel » Mon Mar 26, 2007 10:41 pm

My best ever on-the-verge-of-meltdown run netted 6.4E+06 neutrons / second total isotropic emission rate. Input was 57 kV @ 30 mA. (1710 W)

Jon Rosenstiel

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Steven Sesselmann
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Re: The Hull prize!

Post by Steven Sesselmann » Tue Mar 27, 2007 9:33 am

Okay, so the target is 3750 neutrons per 1 watt input.

Does it have to be a polywell devise, or is it open to other non Hirsch type devices?

Richard, would it be possible to publish best verified run in Neuts/watt adjacent to the name on your list of Neutroneers?

Steven
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https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Steven_Sesselmann - Various papers and patents on RG

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