It may sound impractical initially, but South Korea is making its own Sun. It is basically a magnetic fusion device. It is called the Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR). It is nicknamed artificial Sun because of the energy it produces. The artificial Sun burns at 15 million degrees Celsius. The device made a new world record recently. It reached over 100 million degrees Celsius temperature. It achieved the feat for 20 seconds. The temperature is over 6.6 times more than the fusion device’s real temperature. The device had achieved the same temperature two years back as well. But it lasted for just one and a half seconds. In 2019, it reached this level for eight seconds.
The latest record was made on November 24 last year. This is the first time when plasma was able to sustain at this temperature for a long time. The East Asian nation conducted more than 100 plasma experiments to test the fusion device. Scientists wanted to know what the device can do. The experiments were conducted between August and December 10, 2020. Reports say that the Internal Transporter Barrier Mode played a crucial role in reaching the temperature of 100 million degrees Celsius for a record 20 seconds time. The entire experiment included multiple techniques to stabilize the plasma.
The intensity of Korea’s artificial Sun can be understood by the fact that the core of the Sun produces 15 million degrees Celsius. Sun is the only source of energy for most of the things on Earth. But the temperature drops to 3.5 million degrees Celsius as energy moves to the convective zone. It is the uppermost layer of the Sun’s interior. The success is an incentive for South Korea in the race for securing technologies for plasma operations. The artificial Sun is kept at the Korean Institute of Fusion Energy. It is joint research by the institute, Seoul National University, and Columbia University. The KFE is aiming to achieve 300 seconds by 2025. The next target is to develop a reactor that produces more energy than it takes.