Superconductor technology for smaller, sooner fusion

0 Comments

Superconductor technology for smaller, sooner fusion
The assembly designed for the third SULTAN cable test features two 3-meter VIPER HTS cables in parallel and connected with a copper joint at the bottom; cryogenic helium and electrical current are injected at the top.once installed in SULTAN. The outer superstructure provides structural support to react the enormous lateral electromechanical body loads generated within the cables during testing. A unique aspect of this design, provided by the materials and the trapezoidal extension at the mid-plane, is the ability to axial strain the cables during testing to better replicate the conditions that would be experienced by VIPER cableswithin a high-field magnet. Credit: Jose Estrada/PSFC

Scientists have long sought to harness fusion as an inexhaustible and carbon-free energy source. Within the past few years, groundbreaking high-temperature superconductor technology (HTS) sparked a new vision for achieving practical fusion energy. This approach, known as the high-field pathway to fusion, aims to generate fusion in compact devices on a shorter timescale and lower cost than alternative approaches.


A key technical challenge to realizing this vision, though, has been getting HTS superconductors to work in an integrated way in the development of new, high-performance superconducting magnets, which will enable higher magnetic fields than previous generations of magnets, and are central to confining and controlling plasma reactions.

Now a team led by MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center (PSFC) and MIT spinout company Commonwealth Fusion Systems (CFS), has developed and extensively tested an HTS cable technology that can be scaled and engineered into the high-performance magnets. The team’s research was published on Oct. 7 in Superconductor Science and Technology. Researchers included MIT assistant professor and principal investigator Zachary Hartwig; PSFC Deputy Head of Engineering Rui F. Vieira and other key PSFC technical and engineering staff; CFS Chief Science Officer Brandon Sorbom Ph.D. ’17 and other

Apple Unveils a Smaller HomePod

0 Comments

First up from Apple in its new product lineup on Tuesday was a HomePod Mini, a smaller and cheaper version of its HomePod smart speaker, which hasn’t been as successful as the products it emulated, the Amazon Echo and Google Home.

To distinguish the HomePod, Apple has emphasized the speaker’s ability to fill a room with high-quality sound. The original device was not popular, largely because of its higher price tag of $350. In addition, Siri, Apple’s virtual assistant, is not as capable as Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant. In our tests, Siri on HomePod was dumber than Siri on other products, including the iPhone.

Apple said on Tuesday that Siri was continuing to improve.

Regardless, the HomePod has a long way to go. The company hasn’t disclosed its sales, but the market-research firm Strategy Analytics estimated that in the fourth quarter of 2019, Apple had less than 5 percent of the global market share for smart speakers, well below the 28 percent share for Amazon and 25 percent share for Google.

The HomePod Mini will be priced at $99, Apple said. That compares with Amazon Echo at $99 and the mini Echo Dot at $49. Google Home, which is now called Nest Audio, costs $99 and its mini version, Nest Mini, is priced at $49.

Source Article

Apple event expected to bring 5G speed, smaller iPhone 12

0 Comments

By Stephen Nellis

(Reuters) – Apple Inc <AAPL.O> on Tuesday is expected to announce an iPhone 12 capable of tapping into faster 5G networks, a new feature designed to spur sales during the company’s busiest sales quarter.

The event is nearly one month later than normal and comes as the coronavirus pandemic has disrupted Apple’s well-oiled machine for designing and churning out its biggest-selling product.

Wall Street analysts widely expect Apple to launch four new iPhones at the event broadcast from its Cupertino, California headquarters at 1 p.m. ET (1700 GMT). (https://www.apple.com/apple-events/)

Two will be “Pro” models expected to have more camera sensors and a higher-quality display, with one coming in a large version for fans of big screens. In the middle is likely to sit an iPhone 12 with the broadest appeal: A big enough display and enough cameras to satisfy most of Apple’s fans, with a more attractive price.

Finally, analysts expect Apple to return to offering a smaller-screened model of its flagship phone after several years of relegating fans of smaller devices to its legacy models.

The iPhones announced Tuesday will test whether Apple can keep up that streak and ride a wave of consumer excitement around 5G wireless data networks, whose speediest variants outstrip their predecessors’ data rates multiple times over. Android devices from Samsung Electronics Co Ltd <005930.KS> and others have featured the new networking capabilities for months, and analysts say 5G phones are driving upgrades.

But Apple is in a delicate position of needing to excite consumers with 5G without setting them up for a disappointment: For many of its fans, it will be their first experience with 5G networks, which in the United States remain years away from delivering dramatic speed boosts for most consumers. Some analysts worry Apple will be selling a

Two Massive Asteroids, 1 Smaller NEA To Zip Past Earth On Tuesday

0 Comments

KEY POINTS

  • The NEAs will pass by Earth on Tuesday, Oct. 13
  • 2018GD2 has been included in the ESA’s Risk List
  • 2020TN3 is expected to be three times as big as the Statue of Liberty in New York

A total of three Near-Earth Asteroids (NEA) are expected to pass by the planet this Tuesday in varying times, the same day when Mars will be in opposition. One of the NEAs to zip by is three times the size of the Statue of Liberty in New York.

The first of the three to zip past Earth on Tuesday is also the largest. 2020TN3 is about 278 ft in diameter and is expected to zip by early in the morning, at 5:12 a.m. EDT. The giant asteroid will be three times the size of the Statue of Liberty. NASA’s Center for Near Earth Object Studies claims the NEA will be flying by at a safe distance of about 5 million kilometers away from the planet’s surface and luckily has not been included in the European Space Agency’s Risk List.

About an hour after 2020TN3 passes by Earth, a 101-foot asteroid is anticipated to zip by the planet. Asteroid 2020TA3, recently discovered on Oct. 10, will be as long as an adult blue whale and will reach its closest approach to Earth at a distance of 5 million kilometers from the planet. The said NEA is set to fly by at 6:32 a.m. EDT, at a speed of 6 kilometers per second. Asteroid 2020TA3’s next Earth close approach is expected by Oct. 8, 2036, according to the ESA and has also not been included in its Risk List.

The last asteroid to zip by the home planet on Tuesday is called 2018GD2. Although only 25 feet in diameter, this NEA has been included

Apple event could include smaller iPhone, 5G announcement

0 Comments

(Nexstar) – Apple is expected to reveal a 5.4-inch iPhone and 5G capability during its “Hi, Speed” virtual event on Tuesday.

CEO Tim Cook and other Apple executives are expected to speak during Tuesday’s virtual presentation from the company’s massive, but now mostly empty, headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Apple is expected to unveil four new iPhone models, including a rumored iPhone mini 5.4-inch model that is expected to be priced at $699, according to The Verge. Its size will be comparable to current SE models sold by Apple.

The most expensive iPhone model expected to be unveiled on Tuesday is a 6.7-inch iPhone 12 Pro Max that will likely be priced at $1,099.

All four iPhones expected to be revealed on Tuesday will likely support 5G cellular networks — a first for Apple.

Some iPhone features that could be revealed on Tuesday include faster Face ID technology, longer battery life, and improved zoom on the camera, according to MacRumors.

Some other announcements could include a new HomePod and new AirPod headphones. The event beings at 1 p.m. ET on Tuesday and will be streamed at apple.com.

Source Article