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Everything we know about China’s ‘artificial sun’

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China’s ‘artificial sun’ broke clean energy records, as scientists tout nuclear fusion as the ‘ultimate energy’ for the future of humanity.

China’s nuclear fusion reactor has made headlines this month after producing an ‘artificial sun’ that was five times hotter than the real thing.

The device broke world records after sustaining a nuclear reaction at 70 million degrees Celsius (158 million degrees Fahrenheit) for more than 17 minutes, state media Xinhua reported.

The ‘artificial sun’ is a project dubbed the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST), and is operated at a research facility in China’s Heifei city in Anhui Province.

Here’s what we know so far:

It’s not actually a ‘sun’ 

Unlike its name suggests, or fake Twitter videos would have you believe, EAST is not a floating sphere of light that was launched into the sky.

It is in fact a donut-shaped reactor chamber where heated-up plasma is trapped with a powerful magnetic field.

The goal of this ‘sun’ is not to supply light or heat, but instead an enormous amount of clean energy that researchers hope to harvest to power cities.

EAST gets its nickname ‘artificial sun’ because this process of energy-generation, known as nuclear fusion, replicates the sun’s physics.

The process uses atomic nuclei to generate large amounts of energy into electricity, by merging hydrogen atoms to create helium.

READ MORE: China switches on ‘artificial sun’ nuclear reactor

It’s smashing records

Before EAST, France’s Tore Supra tokamak held the world record for the longest plasma duration time of any tokamak reactor at 6.5 minutes in 2003.

South Korea’s Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR) reactor set a world record in 2016 by maintaining 50 million degrees Celsius (90 million degrees Fahrenheit) for 70 seconds.

EAST broke KSTAR’s record in 2021 sustaining around 119 million degrees Celsius (216 million degrees Fahrenheit) for 102 seconds.

EAST also set another record in May last year by running for 101 seconds at an unprecedented 120 million degrees Celsius (216 million degrees Fahrenheit).

In contrast, the core of the actual sun is around 15 million degrees Celsius (27 million degrees Fahrenheit).

It’s expanding clean energy options

Nuclear fusion produces no greenhouse gases and leaves no radioactive waste.

Scientists at the Hefei Institutes of Physical Science touted the success of EAST in expanding the country’s clean energy options.

“As opposed to fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas, which are in danger of being exhausted and pose a threat to the environment, raw materials required for the ‘artificial sun’ are almost unlimited on earth,” says researcher Gong Xianzu in a press release.

“Therefore, fusion energy is considered the ideal ‘ultimate energy’ for the future of humanity.”

READ MORE: The covert race for an artificial sun and unlimited energy

The ‘artificial sun’ is a project dubbed the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST), and is operated at a research facility in China’s Heifei city in Anhui Province. (Getty Images)

It’s costly but worth it

EAST is estimated to cost China more than $1 trillion by the experiment’s end in June.

It’s part of a collaboration project based in France known as the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) which is set to be the world’s largest nuclear reactor.

Alongside China, 35 countries are participating in the project including the entire European Union, the United Kingdom, India and the United States.

ITER contains the world’s most powerful magnet, able to produce a magnetic field 280,000 times stronger than Earth’s own field, according to Live Science.

The global fusion reactor is expected to run in 2025.

However, China isn’t stopping at EAST, the country is planning to complete a new Tokamak fusion device by the early 2030s.

READ MORE: Work begins to assemble France’s global nuclear fusion device

Source: TRT World

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Chief of Defence Force inducted into International Fellows Hall of Fame

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Chief of Defence Force Major General Abdulla Shamaal has been inducted into the International Fellows Hall of Fame at the National Defence University (NDU) in Washington, DC, United States (US).

Major General Shamaal received the award at the International Fellows Hall of Fame induction ceremony held at the Sydney Sheraton Grand Hotel. Lieutenant General Michael Plehn, the President of the NDU, presented the certificate and memento of induction into the International Fellows Hall of Fame.

Major General Shamaal is the first Maldivian to be awarded the honour. He and four others from four countries have been awarded the honour. He completed a Master of Arts in Strategic Security Studies from the NDU in 2012 and was awarded the Distinguished Honour Graduate of the course.

The International Fellows Hall of Fame was established in 1999. The purpose of the programme is to provide a prestigious and visible means of honouring NDU graduates who have attained through merit the highest positions in their nation’s armed forces, service component, or government, or who have held an equivalent position in a multinational organisation. The members of the International Fellows Hall of Fame are recognised in a formal ceremony on the NDU campus. Their photographs are displayed in Marshall Hall in the Hall of Fame area.

 

Source: psmnews

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Media urged to highlight nations’ joint BRI efforts

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A senior official underlined on Tuesday the important role of media in boosting high-quality cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative, urging international media outlets to tell about participating countries’ joint efforts to promote peace and prosperity, open, green and innovative development, and cultural progress.

Huang Kunming, a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, made the remark in a video speech at the 2022 Media Cooperation Forum on Belt and Road, which was held in Xi’an, Shaanxi province.

Huang said that jointly building the Belt and Road was a significant initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping in line with the trend of global development and in answering the call of the times, with a view to advancing the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

Since the initiative was proposed, infrastructure connectivity has advanced, the synergy of rules and standards has made progress and the bonds among people in countries involved in the initiative have been strengthened, Huang said.

The efforts to enhance Belt and Road cooperation have been deepened with fruitful results, and the initiative has become a global public good and a platform for international cooperation welcomed by the international community, he added.

Emphasizing the media’s important role in promoting the communication of information, enhancing mutual trust and building consensus, Huang said jointly building the Belt and Road is inseparable from the active participation of the media outlets worldwide as well as their sincere exchanges and pragmatic cooperation.

Looking forward, Huang expressed his hope that international media organizations will actively promote the perspective of civilization that features equality, mutual learning, dialogue and inclusiveness, make the voices of win-win cooperation heard and contribute to high-quality Belt and Road cooperation.

The forum was held in both an online and offline format. It was jointly organized by People’s Daily, the CPC Shaanxi Provincial Committee and the Shaanxi provincial government. More than 120 media representatives from over 40 countries and international organizations attended the forum.

By the end of March, a total of 149 countries and 32 international organizations had signed cooperation documents with China on jointly building the Belt and Road.

From 2013 to 2021, the volume of trade in goods between China and countries involved in the Belt and Road amounted to around $11 trillion, and two-way investment exceeded $230 billion, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

 

Source: China Daily

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Management plans to be implemented this year for two protected areas in Baa Atoll

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The Baa Atoll Biosphere Reserve Office has stated management plans will be formulated and implemented this year for two more areas in the atoll declared as protected areas.

Baa Atoll currently has 10 protected areas, of which three areas have a management plan. These three areas are Hanifaru, Olhugiri and Mendhoo region.

The Baa Atoll Biosphere Reserve Office revealed management plans are being formulated for two more areas, to be implemented this year. As such, management plans are to be implemented this year for the areas of Angafaru and Goidhoo Koaru.

Angafaru was declared protected on June 6, 2009. The protected area includes Dhonfanuthila, Dhiguthila and Mahaanagaa. The area used to be a breeding ground for both grey and white tip reef sharks. However, reef shark numbers have dramatically decreased from the site due to overfishing

Goidhoo Koaru, located on the northern side on the inhabited island of Goidhoo, was declared protected on June 5, 2011. This area has the highest biodiversity and largest mangrove forest within Baa Atoll. It is one of the largest mangrove ecosystems within the nation and has a high biodiversity population of mangrove associated vertebrates and invertebrates. This site is also a popular roosting site for migratory birds such as the Ruddy Turnstone and Northern Shoveler.

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has declared Baa Atoll as a biosphere reserve for an additional 10 years. UNESCO has instructed the Baa Atoll Biosphere Reserve Office to formulate and implement effective management plans for all protected areas in the region.

 

Source: psmnews

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