The nuclear fusion reactor at MIT was recently ordered to be closed due to the lack of the government funding. However, even as it was shut down, Alcator C-Mod made a new world record on its last day of operation.
The fusion reactor housed in the Plasma Science and Fusion Center broke the plasma pressure record. The last plasma pressure record was set by MIT nearly ten years ago.
Sun is powered by the fusion energy however the same reactions could not be replicated in the Earth. Plasma must attain a certain temperature, particle density, and period of confinement to generate fusion energy. Density and temperature produce pressure, thus fulfilling the two-third requirement for creation of the fusion energy.
In 2005, MIT achieved a pressure of 1.77 atm. The latest recorded value of the plasma pressure was 2.05 atm, implying that the previous value was improved by 15 percent.
The temperature inside the Alcator C-Mod reached a whopping 35 million degrees Celsius, twice as hot as the sun core. The plasma in the Alcator C-Mod generated 300 trillion fusion reactions per second. The reactor was surprisingly small for the scale of the experiment, only one-cubic-meter.
Farewell Alcator C-Mod!