In our exclusive interview, Bussard describes the disenchantment with big-science Tokamak research that led him to return to the roots of Farnsworth-style fusion in the "Polywell" project that he initiated in 1986. Funded for over 20 years by the Department of the Navy, Bussard's EMC2 corporation was tasked with solving 19 fundamental challenges that stood in the way of designing commercially viable Farnsworth fusors - and in an unexpected twist, a race to bring the prototype online after project funding was cut in 2006.To hear the audio go to Tim's site. He has links there. It is a most interesting talk and well worth your time. Dr. Bussard discusses his Fusion Reactor and other Fusion developments like Cold Fusion and Sonic Fusion. He explains why the last two, though real effects, are unlikely to lead to net power production.
Never straying far from the dream of manned spaceflight, Bussard's Polywell design is exceptional in being not only designed for high-efficiency, but also for portability - making it perfect for not only the Navy's intended use in powering ocean vessels and submarines, but also for providing high output thrust for proposed nuclear space-applications. Bussard's first intended application was an 8-foot diameter naval reactor capable of generating 100-megawatts of output energy, with the ultimate goal of using these reactors in high-velocity transorbital spacecraft capable of reaching the moon in less than 8 hours time.
Let me add that the US Navy funded Dr. Bussard's research this past August, about two months before he died. Two scientists from Los Alamos National Laboratories, one a long time friend of Dr. Bussard's, continue the work.
Cross Posted at Classical Values