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Clean Fusion Power of the DecadeKIRK CITRON: Good evening, I'm Kirk Citron, and I'm an associate and an editor at the Long Now Foundation. And this is the Fabrice Florin an executive director of NewsTrust. We are briefly going to tell you about this week's energy, some background. We have been running a project called the Long News which as Alexander said looks for news stories that might still matter 50, or 100, or 10,000s years from now. And just to give you an idea of a couple of themes of the kinds of things we have been looking at for the last couple of months, there's talk that there might be another mass extinction event but the problem this time isn't an asteroid or volcanic eruption, it's us. And we found headlines like more than 800 wildlife species are now extinct and may be a reason we should care which is that animal biodiversity keeps people healthy. A secondary, and another thing, is the extinction of humanlife spans with stories like it is starting to get crowded in the 100 years olds club. And half of US babies living today may be reach 100. So that's a flavor of the kind of news stories we are looking for that might have some kind of longterm significance. And lately for obvious reasons, we have been thinking about the future of energy, kind of hoping the current crisis will prompt a deeper conversation about the need to find alternatives to oil, like fusion which we are going to be hearing about tonight. So to do that, we have partnered with NewsTrust to do this energy news and I will turn it over to Fabrice to tell you more about it. FABRICE FLORIN: Thank you, Kirk. NewsTrust is a community of citizens that care about good journalism because we need it to make inform decisions as citizens. So we rate the news for quality and we feature some of the best stories that we find everyday on our sites. In that, we offer a hybrid news filter which engages professional and amateurs to filter the news. And this whole collaborative approach is an effective way to find good journalism all in one place. And it manifests itself on the home site: NewsTrust.net. Everyday our editors feature stories worth reading. Topics like, in this case, the future of energy. But you could also see our reviewers at the bottom of the screen and they are doing the reviewing which helps us feature these top stories based on their reviews and ratings and those are filtered by computer out goers. This week we are hosting an energy news hunt. We hope that you will join us. It works a little bit like a scavenger hunt. We are all looking for good journalism about the future of energy. So each day our editors post stories on our site. And we invite you to review them. So, when you click a story on our site, you go to the news providers Web site and you can see our review form in the top right corner. What we ask, you to read the story and then click on the buttons that describe it best. Is it factual? Is it fair? Is it well sourced? We have other criteria. Based on your answers, we are able to surface some of the more interesting stories. So what kind of stories have been we finding? The last week we have looked at a story about solar. We found some great articles from their SPIEGEL and ClimateBiz. Mainstream sources. Independent sources. We have looked at nuclear power with stories like these, the case for and against nuclear power from the Wall Street Journal and great insights from other publications like Spiked. As far as wind power again interesting stories from UPI and many more. The topic of today's talk "fusion energy" again covers ranges from the BBC to the new scientists. It is diversity of all these sources that is what makes it interesting. You can see how the different sources cover the same topics. And we have reviewed hundreds of stories already. Next week we will share the best and worse coverage on both the NewsTrust and the LongNow blocks. And we'll keep adding stories on our site. So we hope you will join us. The best way for you to do that is go to NewsTrust.longnow.org and we hope to see you online. Thank you very much.STEWART BRAND: Thanks, Fabrice; I'm Stewart Brand.A little continuity here, Fabrice Florin was at the Hacker's conference in 1983 and made a video of it that is still available online. This is an event that Kevin Kelly, my wife Ryan Phelan and I organized back age of computers. What is interesting, you'll see people there who were young pioneers at the time are all still very active. What is going on across the bay and over the hill at liver more is a serve inside of star power. Stars are powered by fusion and we have been looking for productive ways to bring that power here. And Alexandria Rose and I went to the National Leadership facility a couple months ago and it knocked our socks off. Basically, everybody who sees it goes, "Oh, my God." One, this is amazing, any how to do that massive kind of with lasers. It might mean pretty good things. We can't all go to the National Leadership facility so what Alexander and I decided may be we would bring the national facility here and here it is. ED MOSES: Thank you so much to invite me. And all of you for coming out. I'm going to be talking about laser fusion, energy and the future of it. It is going to be at the story of the National Ignition facility. That is a picture of it transported to San Francisco. Now when I go around the world I transport it Tokyo, or Paris or wherever I have to be and that's ag or happen to be. And that is sort of the point. My purpose is to show you, by the end of the day, by the end of this evening that it is possible in the fairly near future, what we are doing at the NIF can be a part of your future of clean energy future. We want to demonstrate the route to fusion energy. Fusion energy is so cool because as Stewart said not only does it power the stars, but we use the hydrogen in water, lots of it. And it has an energy density about 7 million times that of normal chemical bonds. That's nice. And also, no carbon. You are burning hydrogen. We'll be talking about that. Not all of you can come out. But we do have public affairs towers. And Linda Sziber is here from the lab and it is possible to come out to the lab if you make arrangement to see it. This is an interesting picture. I'll show you how it used to look 40 years ago in a second. This is where the NIF is; it is 60 kilometers aware. It is out in Livermore. It used to out in Ranchland. But slowly but surely we have been swallowed by San Francisco.So since I'm at the Long Now Foundation I've been thinking about, recasting history. This is the history of the universe and the future of the universe. The history goes back 14 billion years which is a long time if we look back in time on the slog scale, of 10 years ago, 100 years ago, a on the years ago, 10,000, etc., you can see it work our way back to 10 billion, 14 billion, years ago, the time of the big bang. And we can look for the Long Now Foundation view of the world but we can look forward 10,000 years? There's another way to date these things which is 2020, 2110, 3110, 12,110. When you think about this or go back 10,000 years to minus 8,000 which is a little bit before BC, you can see it is an important point, we are looking forward is 10,000 years. Can we imagine that? Think about what our ancestors who were coming into agriculture and forming the first villages and cities could possibly think about us today. That's, I think, the dynamic of the challenge that we think about when we think about our responsibility for the future. So here are the four stages of the universe from the human centric point of view. This was this 10 billion years of preearth. And about 5 billion years ago, there was a supernova around this part of the Milky Way blew up and put star dust everywhere, which we are now made of and the earth was made out and then we had earth. Almost immediately there was life on earth. then we had the life on earth which is still going on but before us we sort of had 4 billion years of life without us. Then we have this 100 thousand years or so of human civilization. Human civilization, I define as when we came out of Africa. Homosapiens were established we started roaming the earth. And now we are looking at the what happened during these times? We had this very nice period of around 4 billion years where there was hydrocarbon and oxygen production. So all the oxygen that came before us were hard at work you think, making hydrocarbon, CH bonds, which we are now thinking about very carefully and making oxygen so we could breathe. At times there was a lot of oxygen, and at that time, there were explosions of carbon making. Then when there was not it wasn't so much. That was that period. What is this period about? Human civilization. It is hydrocarbon and oxygen burning. So we did that for a few billion years recollect, we came around. Now we started to harvest that. What that leads to now, the situation we are on, environmental disaster because of this burning or do we a way to find a way to have a clean energy future? So that's the history of the universe in four steps. It wasn't the earth. It was. We made hydrocarbons and oxygen. Then we started burning. Now we are here today. What are we going to do? This is the problem. If you look only back 10,000 years, you know, everything seemed fine. Until the last couple of hundred years. The population made this incredible change in slope. And it made this change in slope because of carbon; right? The industrial revolution happened. So you can think about it, a few great men and a few great women who did great things. But they led to us learning procreate, the green revolution and go from 1 husband of million to billions in couple of hundred years. This has changed things dramatically. In fact if you just look at the United States. These are quadtrillion if you don't know what they are, it's okay. It's just a measure of how much energy we use. From the 1850s until today, we have gone from barely using energy to 3 trillion watts. Now go over 3 trillion watts that's three times 10 to the 12th watts. and 3 times 10 to the eighth of us, that's 10,000 watts each. So all of us are using 100 watt lightbulbs all the time. That's not including heating. That's the energy we are consuming as Americans right now. How do we do this? Again go back 150 years, remember, we are the carbon burners. So 150 years ago, we were basically a wood society. After a while we would chop down the forest. We went over to coal. And then we went to oil. And then we went to gas. And then we finally did a little dam building and collecting hydroenergy and then we did nuclear and then you see this incredible little renewals. I think this is a really interesting chart. I want to show you some things about it that will be useful to understand our future. Because if the past is prolonged, this tells you something. It takes a long time to change energy modalities. Takes about 50 years for coal to displace wood. And it's sort of took that amount of time for oil to displace coal. But you see it didn't displace all of it and then it took another 40 years for natural gas to displace some of the oil. It didn't displace any of the coal though. And then we had nuclear sort of displace some of the gas but none of the oil or the coal; right? So what happens is you have these modalities last for a long time, and they increasingly get harder and harder to displace previous types of energy burning. The reason that is, you spend all that money to build that and they generally last 50 to 70 years. And once you have done that you don't want to throw it out. And in fact, you are rate payers, whoever you were during that time say no I'm happy with this. I spent my money; let's use it. This is really the amazing part. We were in 98 percent carbon burning society and today 100 years later we have gone all the way to 90 percent. So if anyone thinks we are not a carbon burning society, and sort of really entrenched in it, look at this. We know that our energy supplies. This is what we are doing, this is gas flame out; right? What we have here is the following thing that we have to look at. What is the problem with fossil fuels? Well, going back billon or two billion years we are burning up about 10 million years of hydrocarbons every year. Some people say 20 million so it is sort of hard to measure. And that means it is not going to last forever. So we might have 100 years to go of coal. 40 years to go of oil. These things are argued but it is not 200 or 300. This is sort of where we are. So it is not going to last forever. May be that is good. Fossil fuel can affect the quality of our life, this is a famous picture of the bird's nest in Beijing on a clear day; right? This is the oil pollution. And fossil fuel can lead to environmental disaster. Everyone knows this picture. What I think is amazing about this picture, what is going on in the bustle of Mexico, there's a 30inch oil about a mile down in the gulf that has putting about something like 50,000barrels a day, which is a million barrels every three weeks or so. Sounds like a huge number. But just remember, the United States is burning a million barrels of oil an hour. So you figure that; right. And then you think about what is really going in our world, this focuses our attention has taken President Obama's whole agenda off the table. This is where he is at right now. That shows the instability of the system we are living in. The other thing that fossil fuel can do, it can affect the climate. This is argued by some that it isn't exactly affecting the climate yet or has some smaller or unknown effect or how it will development over the next 50 years. But I think the preponderance of scientists sort of have taking the point of view that is very likely this is an effect that is real and over the next 10 years it will be sorted out. Scientists are slow in coming to conclusions usually and it is deliberate. I think the beta has been going on for a while. But I think it is obvious what is happening. I don't mean Katrina was caused by global climate warming but there are many things that are. The way I think about it, and I know many of you have had these thoughts many of time. For the first time human kind is acting as a force of nature. I don't mean we are doing agriculture or things like that, or dragging species around the globes in ways that are unnatural, right now we are acting like a force of nature globally. This is I think something that is kind of a first. We've always been a local, locally driven species. One group of people, and what another group of people were doing was not affecting everyone. Now we are, I'd like to say we are not in a global society, we are in a nonlocal society. Which is has slight subtle difference to me. We can think we are acting locally and remember old politics as local, but we having effects on each other. When you look at this picture, some people look at green land. They say that is a big ice sheet. Seems to be melting faster than people thought. The ocean seems to be rising, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is going up. What the temperature is doing or not doing is really hard to tell on short time periods. But over long time periods it is going up and how is this going to affect us? Well, let's go back to the U.S. The way it is going to affect us is really hard to get out of this carbon habit because in 1970 or so you can see everything frozen. We were sort of 9590 percent carbon then. And that is where we are now. Those month modalities take forever to change. So what do you think were going to do? This is the finger print of human kind, and how it is dealing with us. This is the Earth at night. I think what is interesting about the earth at night is that how interesting you can see where we live but it is also interesting it doesn't quantitively tell you what is out there. China looks bright, India looks bright. But remember they are using around 10 percent per capita energy that we are. And they don't like that and why should they? They want to live in our standard of living. And they are rising they are raising their levels of energies rapidly and there's going to be about 3 billion more people sailing on this earth with us and the amount of energy we need is going to go up. Now whether it is 2 billion or 4 billion which is also arguable, we are 6.5 billion right now, some people go to 8.5 people times 10. I don't know what it is. It is a lot. In China is sort of a billion. It is 2 and half billion. 2 Chinas. 3.5 billion, three Chinas. It is a lot of people and they are happening to us pretty quickly. So we are at tipping point on where we are going. The climate is changing. We are running out of carbon. It is affecting the way we live. What are we going to do? This is something else that is happening? If you look at the United States only we're now we stopped building in the '70 and '80s we are going to have we have 70 year infrastructure. It is going to turn off or run out by 2060. Why it is going off, the electricity demand is going to go up. It is going up for two reasons. Even with conservation and even with efficiency. We are becoming a more legible society. And we are using more electricity. So that combination shows that the demand is growing for electricity. And our electrical infrastructure is going away. So there's this big gap that's forming. This gap is kind of interesting. If you look at this you can see that we need around 250 gigawatts by 2050. Does everybody's know what a gig watt is? It is a nuclear reactor is a gigawatt. Everyone knows on the way down the aquarium, 500 megawatts. The United States needs something like 200 or so (inaudible) or some other source of green source of energy. And it gets worse and worse after that. So 2030, 2050, is where things happen and that is our challenge. If you look at the earth, worldwide, not to beat this to death, it sort of gets worth. Now I show this in billions of barrels of oil equivalent. I show you these units so you, when you are working or you are walking around and you see this here is where we are today. It is a fossil fuel society. This is what we think we have to do. Most models agree. Not exactly, in order to stay at two degrees Centigrade, which people forget is four degrees Fahrenheit, on average above where we are today. As a scientist, I have to say, or a social scientists if I were one, turning that around, based on our history is an incredibly difficult path. In fact, if you look at this, this says by 2050, 2060 should be go back to preindustrial revolution carbon admissions. How do you do it? It is real hard. Not only that, we have to make a huge amount of low carbon energy at the end of the century. This is all going to happen in 2030, to 2050, only 20 years from now. And the problem is we talked about that lag time if we decide good ideas today, it is going to be hard to pull this off. One more thing that makes this even more difficult, we are concentrating in the city. Right now this is the mega city in 2000. Mega cities are cities above the population of 10 million. This is how people think it is going to look in 25. You can see these exploding cities. Why do people go to cities? That's where the jobs are. That's where culture is. That's where centers of power are. By the way, they are more energy efficient. Cities are the most energy efficient parts of your society. This is where people are going. Because they are in cities, they need base low power. We don't want to have power that goes on and off. Based on whether the wind is blowing or the sun is out. We live in a 24 society. We need energy that is affordable, clean, nongeopolitical that's a big deal we don't like depending on other people. No one likes depending on other people for where they get their energy. We'd like it to be inexhaustible. We'd like it to be nonproliferate. To fit in a physical infrastructure that we have; right? That means you want to be able to plug into where you are. Compact and acceptable for all cultures and deliverable and timely. That's a quite a list. And most people when they look at that list say well I don't know what to do. Everyone has their own idea what to do China worked on population control, it sort of helped on some levels. Some people say people shouldn't develop, they should live in a less developed society. Other people say we should renewable, like wind or sun or saw grass. Or we have nuclear or we have carbon secretion take the carbon out of our carbon producing plants or we could be more energy efficient. All of these are clearly a part of our infrastructure, of our future. But none of them is the panacea, at least most people don't think so.Then I ask you is there another idea? One that could be really exciting? And the answer is, and I love this picture, it is a picture of the sun. What I love more about it, is the picture of the U.S. space station flying across the sun. And because I think it sort of says man's capabilities for good or may be if you think it is a little bit too much, but it shows we are not limited in our vision if we choose to. And I think the answer is right in front of us. Just look at where we are. Look at the sun. In fact, look anywhere in the universe and you come too this is this beautiful picture out of the Hubble and we are looking from hundreds of thousands away in this picture, billions of light years away. And you say that fusion powers the cosmost. So every bit of light that you see in the day sky or the night sky, every bit, is coming from burning plasmas. Or fusion systems. And the question is where did that come from? And that's old Albert. Albert in 1905 which was an important year for many things besides this, the airplane appeared. The Wright Brothers were there. Henry Ford was there. This was an incredibly productive time for human kind. Told us the way this all works, he didn't actually tell us, but he pointed the way, is that the reason that these things, this energy is happening is you can take mass, stuff and turn it into energy. The fact is he even said more. He said they are the same thing. Just how can you convert them from one to the other. They are measured the same. What is great about this is C, the speed of light. It is such a big number. So when you multiply C by C. You get a really big number as we say scientifically, and so a very small amount of mass can be a very large amount of energy f you can pull it off. Now it is hard. And we asked could we build a miniature sun on the earth. And when I talk about miniature, you'll see I'm talking about the diameter of a hair. I'm not talking about a big sun. One of the reasons we like the sun is because it is far away. If it if we were as close as Venus is to the sun it is a sort of a warm day. If it is where Mars is, it is sort of cold. We are in that Goldy Lox planet, not too hot, and not too cold. Just right. Then that is actually true. So could we do this. Could we build a miniature sun on the earth. What is the recipe in the cook book? For fusion on earth? We have to take hydrogen from water, and you filter out the heavy water. So the time of the big bang, actually about one minute after the big bang hydrogen appeared in the universe. And there was two types of hydrogen. Regular hydrogen which we call hydrogen the other kind which is deuterium. And then there's about 1 and 7,000 water molecules when you go out to the bay that is heavy water. If we filter water and we place it in the oven and we heat it to around 200 million degrees Fahrenheit, for a few billionths of a second you can turn mass into copious amounts of energy. And it has no carbon and no waste. So that is the recipe. So where do you get one of those ovens? So there it is. That's what the unusually ignition facility is. It holds an oven inside and to display how we got here, we only have to go back 50 years. This is again a California bay area story which is kind of interesting to me. Charlie Towns who is still at Cal Berkeley, he's 94 and still active in the field, invented or pointed the way theoretically to the idea of lasers. He did that in around '58. It is a famous paper. What I think is more interesting is Ted Maimen. Ted Maimen down in Malibu was working at used aircraft where I worked at one time, and he showed the first laser. I have actually held this laser within the last two weeks. It is the 50th anniversary of the invention of the laser. It is so eloquent you can't believe it. If you look at that sucker, it is so small and so it was so revolutionary. It is revolutionary at the scale of the transistor. People still have it understood that. In the next 20 or 30 years. It will be clear that manipulating light using lasers will have more power or at least as much power as manipulating electrons using semiconductors. This is a powerful device and there's where it started. And what is really amazing, this was on May 16th, 1968 at around 3:00 in the afternoon, at the lab, Livermore lab, three days later, look at Livermore then. Remember that picture. We used to be a naval base during World War II. You can still see the runway. That time John Knuckles who was working in the nuclear weapons program at the time realized that that laser was the way to get fusion energy. And it started off a 50 year journey that we are coming to conclusion of right now. So this is what he told us to do. He's the oven. I'm going to tell you how big it is in a second. We have this gold can, and we have this little ball. This little ball has a little hydrogen in it. And it has a capsule wall that is about I will keep using this a little thicker than your hair that is made out of plastic, that is rocket fuel. What happens is let's pray. Okay. What we do, put laser light into this oven. You can see the billionths of a second going on. And this oven gets really hot. Instead of baking it red hot like your oven does, it bake with Xrays and it absorbed on this little cake here. And it explodes and dries the hydrogen together so it is hotter and denser than the center of the sun and it burns. When it burns you actually, if you went there and weighed that after words when you can't, but if you did, compared to beforehand, you would see it was a little mass missing. And that mass is turned into energy for us to harvest. So, how big do you think that is? Anyone want to take a guess? That big. So that is the oven. In fact I have one. I don't know if you can see it. So that's it. That little gold splash there. That is the full size and that little red ball, unless you have superman eyes, you can't see, is the size of the burning capsule. That is a remarkable idea. That is the oven. Of course, we have to build the laser. So we went off in the search of lasers. From the '70s to the '80s we built lasers that went from hundreds of jewels of measure to a kilojoule up by a factor of 10. To another factor of 10 want to another factor of 10. Now we up another factor of 100. And we are at the national admissions facility. That together to everything we know should be possible to get this burn to happen for the first time. First time in the course of human history we will have control from a nuclear burn, changing mass to energy at a scale that's just right for making energy for our future. Now it does other things too and I'll talk about those in a second. Takes a long time get everyone together on doing this. Because it is very expensive facility. And politicians show up and there was the ground breaking. And then that afternoon the real people came by. That's the real ground breaking. And then you know, we had the barn raising. So that's when the NIF was coming together. This is how it looked inside before we put the lasers in. And you can see these normal size liver morons up here. So you can get the scale of this? It looks like that today. It is kind of a great place to be. Stewart talked to you about it. When you are in it, and I've been in it a few thousand times, I'm still amazed by it. It is a masterpiece of American innovation ingenuity, the engineering and everything that goes with it besides physics. And this allows us to do what we want to do, and if you look from a above, again you can see the humans, that's the scale of it right now. Okay. Each one of those pipes has laser light in it. Every single one of them has the highest energy laser in the world. So every one of them has higher energy than any other laser and there are 192 of them. That's why it is so cool. By the way, this is the target shaver that we have that little target in. This is when it was being put in place. It is 10meters in diameter or 35 or so for of the English persuasion and it is pure aluminum and this is how the building looked before we put it in. Then we slid it carefully. And that's how it looks today. Almost. So I want to just show you this without going out of my light, these are humans, again, and down here. So you can see the scale of it. So we had that little target. We have this big ball that's because it puts out a lot of energy. And we want it collected nicely. And we want some optical elements in there that take care of this. But it is big on one scale but I'll show you on another scale it is kind of small compared to what it does. So that's how it looks. It actually doesn't look this way. This is photoshop. There are floors here. Those people are floating. We just took them out so you could see the whole thing at once. That is how it looks like on the inside. So there's two things I like about this picture. First of all, how interesting the picture is giving you the scale of this. More important this is why people work for national geographic. If you notice this whole picture sin focus. When the photographer of national geographic, it was the lens you could not believe. It was kind of interesting in its own right. That is the target. Remember the target? So that's kind of interesting. That big thing, keep this in your mind's eye. That is how big the target is. So we have to hit that target within, again, half the diameter of your hair. And we do it all the time. So we can point at that target. So now when you look, come to the NIF, this is what you see. It is a nice building. It is on 5 hectors or 12acres. It took 10 years to build it. And it should run for the next 30 years. And it should do great things for our country. If you are take off the roof, I love this picture. Look at the drawing, you can see, remember, we talked about that laser bay that we were looking at or I can't see it. So I'll just stay up here. That's how it looks. So what are we going to do with this thing. This is the real control room. This is where it all starts out. It goes out into the laser bays that you saw. It goes up in these preamplifiers. It goes up to a billion times. You have this chunk of light that is about 20 feet long. Just remember, (inaudible). if you took a movie of it, this is actually what it would look like. The thing that was so hard Okay so this is the LEGO block of NIF. Now watch what happens. Now 48 beans. That's its cousins coming along. Now we'll see 96 beans. This is a 10 story high building. All these bean have to get to the target at the same time. And you can see they don't look like it. But watch! And now we turn them from red to ultimate violet. And they go on to the target. You know the drill now. That little target gets real hot. And this happens in billons of a second. And when it is getting hot, it is making an Xray of it. And it drives that target to rest in the diameter of your hair. Hotter than the sun. Higher pressures. When it does, Albert Einstein appears and says will you turn that mass into energy. And you got it. Can you use it. And we do. I would take full credit for this if I had anything to do with it but Let me just tell you this is the real picture. Except this is a tenth of an inch, that is how big that peppercorn is when it starts. I want to show you what happens, graphically, 10 billionths of a second later. So that's actually a picture, again, it is the diameter of your hair smashing this thing together. So, we've done experiments and we are getting pretty far on this. When you do stuff like this you'll publish. You'll have scientific journals. And then we got the Rolling stone of your life is the American fiscal society. So we got on the cover of the Rolling stone. And there is a lot of attention being paid to where we going right now. So this is kind of exciting. So NIF fusion is in the news as you heard a little bit before. And I have to say, this is not a single laboratory activity. It is not a single discipline activity. It is multidiscipline activity. It's multilaboratories. Academia, industry. And international community are playing a big role. In fact, 49 out of the 50 states I'm really sorry North Dakota didn't play, the reason is the company in North Dakota is a woman owned company and she moved to South Dakota. We had North Dakota lost it. We ended up with South Dakota but not North. Okay. So this 3,000 vendor partners. And we have international partners all over the world. This is an international effort. And it has been flying under the radar screen. Most people don't know about it for a long time. Then we had dedication. I got to say this, when you are doing big projects, and the NIF cost around $3.5 billion put together and it took 12 years to do it, you don't do that on your own either technically or industrially but it is a political and a social event. And our California representative, the Senator, the governor, the whole crowd played a huge role in making this happen. It is a really California event. But it was also a national event. This is the kind of dedication that we had to making this happening. And this dedication showed how people were proud of it. Then something really important happened. Secretary Chu, formally known to us as Steve, by the way he got his Noble Prize in laser research, has been on a journey with us through the NIF. He started out kind of skeptical. Because he is a brilliant scientists who is used to table top work. Very high precision work. And he didn't relate to the NIF in the beginning. But over the last 5 years. He has understood where it is. And it is important. He came to the lab. And he said, the NIF is a--. And believes the NIF will achieve ignition. Ignition is getting that burn to happen. And we should think about what we should do. And he said we should start planning for the success of what comes after it. What he is talking about is the energy mission. So the question is, is fusion energy a part of the solution to this problem? The global challenge? Which I think is the fundamental challenge that we face. Remember we have to build the equivalent, to do this, as a species in the 30s, 40s, and 50s, 20 gigawatts a week. 20 gigawatts is a big number. That means you do the United States as we understand it in six months. And we have to keep doing that. This is a tremendous technical challenge, fiscal challenge and social challenge. So, let me talk about what are our idea called laser inertial fusion energy which is builds the laser inertial fusion engine. What does the NIF do? The NIF turns laser light into Xrays which drives that target and that fusion happens and then we get more energy out than we put in. That is kind of a nice idea. You have gain. Doesn't break any rules of physics because you are changing mass to energy. Then you get energy out and now you collect that energy and you turn it into heat. And you take that heat and run it pass a heat exchanger and boil water or something like that and make steam and turn the turbine and get a generator and get electricity, then you plug into the wall. So you started with the highest technology but you always end up back with James Watt. It is the steam engine, this very fancy steam engine. What we have to do, if we are going to do this. We have to add something that converts thermal energy, fusion energy thermal energy to electricity. So you can see this concept if you just use the NIF and put that inside the system. You could do that. What we do is turn laser light into electrons. The electrons go through the wires. Everybody's normal wires. Nothing different about the infrastructure. When you do that, you could change the world if you could pull that off. There's one problem. We have to do it not once every few hours but 10 times a second. That's the issue. It's a little bit different from an engineering point of view from NIF is which is an RND facility. 10 time as second sounds like a big number but if you multiply it by 60, that is 600 RPM so your car is going idles at 600 RPMs so it probably drives as 2 million RPMs. Not a big number. But some people are a little bit put off by that thought but if you go to your high speed copy machine and stuff like that. They do that. That is not really our issue. This is how it would work. This is superslow motion. We fire in a target. Literally on an airgun or something like that. And the laser light hits it. We get ignition and now we get out our fusion energy and we have this salts blanket. Salts are good. Not if you have high blood pressure but salts are good generally because neutrons have no charge. So they sort of tend to go through things. They don't interact with atoms too much. With certain salts, they have these absorptions and they really slow them down quickly. If we have about two feet thick of salt, it will collect the neutrons and they will get hot. Salt will be molten and temperatures like 200 degrees Centigrade. So 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit or so. And now you have this perfect heat exchange medium. So it's a great medium for collecting them, for collecting but now it's great medium for heat exchange so you could run a generator. That's what we do. That's how it works. It sort of looks like this in real life. You can see the salt flowing by. It actually flows pretty slowly. I want you to know that a gigawatt engine. It looks like big on one scale but this is the scale of the NIF, and it is one .4millionth. Just to say a gigawatt is 1.4million horse power, except it has no carbon. You are not burning carbon. And there is no CO2. And what are you using? Water. Hydrogen from water. In fact one liter of every water, so that it is equivalent to two million gallons of gasoline. It is a phenomenal thought. That's why we love hydrogen. Now this isn't like hydrogen in your car. Hydrogen cars, this is very different. That is a chemical hydrogen process. In fact, when I first briefed the governor about this, he said what is the difference between your hydrogen and my hydrogen? And I said will governor, you can take your hydrogen powered hummer and drive it from San Francisco to LA. I can take 7 million of them and drive them at that distance. So it is a really different scale. In fact, think about the alternative. It is hard to think of a 1.4million horse power engine. But life avoids around 77 million tons of CO2 gigawatt year. Thousand megawatt year. So how big is San Francisco since we live here? It is a thousand megawatt city sort of. It is a little bit smaller. That is watt we are burning that is what we are burning. 7 milliontons of CO2, per year. So this is a very large number. So what is nice about this? Laser inertial fusion energy is a separate system. That means that the laser that targets the fusion engine and the (inaudible) Which is where we make electricity and chip it out can sort of all be development pretty much independently of each other. What is really nice about that is. That the (inaudible) plant already sort of exists. We don't have to reinvent that. It is everywhere you go. The fusion chamber has some material issues but they seem manageable. The laser people always bring up. And the targets have to be cheap. So that's the challenge. I'll talk about that in a second.That's a 50 kilowatts running through a half inch of steel. That whole is this big. So when people say you can't make a laser do this, that is not exactly right we just showed that. The question is can you economically make it happen. This is this will be a semiconductor driven laser. I'm going to show you something. Which you are going to have a hard time seeing, this is can anyone see this? This is a laser bar that would be used to drive this. If you looked at it carefully, you'd say you know how to make that. This is the kind of technologies we'll be able to use. What is good about that, we get to ride on the backs of other technologies and make this happen. This is a target. That's a kind of fancy looking target. That is a centimeter, question is, that is an RND target. Could you make those cheap? We want to make them from under 50 cents. So we think we can. Heres our goal. Our goal is 25 cents. For California we would need about 5 billion a year. Sounds like a big number. The tolerance on them is about 50 microns, remember your hair is about a 100 microns or so. There's a lot of things that humans make in billions a year. In fact, there's more than this list. Lego blocks, everyone uses those. Two billion a year. They are the most precision thing that you'll ever use in your normal life. The reason that you can your kids can play with your LEGO blocks is because they are so precise they don't wear. It is kind of an amazing thought. And they are free. People say, what what you spend for LEGO blocks is to market them and chip them. To make them is essentially free, except you have to use oil to do it. Mill speck bullets, about 10 billion made every year, almost two for every one of us, and they have specks that are around, similar to what we are looking at. They are bigger and heavier and have more material and they are made for about 20 cents. I also think if you look at soda cans. Which is big. They are made for a penny or so. The whole idea of making billions of things at these costs is very possible. And there's all kind of developments in nano technologies and the like that are going to drive this down. So heres our road map for life. We want to get ignition and quote/unquote in 2010. We say 2010 to 2012. I'm rounding. This is when we think we'll be in a situation that we show we can get more energy out than we put in. It is going to be an exciting day when that happens. We think, in the 2020 time period, and if there's will, and I'm going to talk about that we have the way to build an engineering demo. So that people and the utilities and others could judge whether this is a part of our collective energy future. A carbon free energy future, we think economical one. That's based on technologies that will inevitable get better over time. Because their technology, were are doing. If that were true, we think in the 2030, to 2050 period, we could become a part a major part of the global energy society which is the time that you saw that challenge arises. Can we get into it. Can we get to a be a part of a the low carbon future? So, where are we? We've talked to serious people. We are a bunch of brainaics at the lab. We are trying to reach out to people who can judge these things better than we can. So we've talked to the CEOs, vice president levels of many utilities. PG&E, Pennacle West, MidAmerica, Nuclear Management, Constellation, Dominion, these have about 65 percent of the rate payers in the country. They are kind of excited. If you can get a CEO to come out for a day a couple of them have come out for more than a day to hear about this and talk about it, it is a sign that serious people with serious money and serious ideas in this, are interested. There's a lot of other people who have come out too. From people like Bill Gates and many other politicians and business people. And people like Stewart who are environmentally driven who are thinking about our future and how to make it play out. This is a challenge for all of us. One of the things these people ask is can you do it economically? Can you have market penetration at the time they need? Is it operable and maintainable? Is there a supply chain? Does it fit into the licensing structure and energy policy? We have a story for all of these. Not for together. What I want to talk about is the economics. There's an interesting view graft. It is blank. But it sort of tells the story of how the world looks. If you are a rate payer, this is what you care about. This is per kilowatt hour. This is a dime per kilowatt hour. You like that. A nickel you love. Up here, you are not so sure. But this is what banks and utilities like to understand. This is the capital insensitivities. The dollars per kilowatt of capacity. I could put this dollars per gigawatt of capacity, which is the kind of plants people would. Then you would say this is $20 billion, $25 billion. We are talking about per gigawatt. That is what people are thinking about. So I want to go put some numbers up. I think these are important things to consider. People are a little bit surprise would I show these. That's what it will take solar, for usable capacity. Kind of an amazing number. A gigawatt sort of cost $25 billions right now. Most people don't know that. This is a heavily subsidized safety that's why people can buy it. If they didn't have that, it would be very hard. Remember, it is only on during the day not at the night. And the reason it works at all is because all that base power that you are adding it into when you can and subtracting from when you can't to do this. Offshore wind is an interesting idea. It is supposed to be on most of the time. But it is pretty expensive, it is really the reliability and maintainability issues of wind mills that are 500 feet high and 500 feet of water. Pretty hard problem. From an engineering point of view.The other ones are light water reactors; that's nuclear. Which is from the point of view of cost. It is really good. And from the point of view it is great. The trouble is. It keeps inching up. It inches to the right in terms of capital cost. That is why President Obama has the long guarantee program for utilities to build new nuclear. It is a real hard problem. Fossil fuels, the way you do it. Carbon capture insecretion. If you can drag the carbon out the flews as it was coming out and put it back under out of ground, you could do something. But it is volatile and it's not a welldeveloped issue and it uses lots of water. So a lot of places cannot use it right now. But all of these can be part of our energy mix. The question is what about life. We have done a lot of studies about life. And it is kind of interesting, sort of looks between fossil fuels and light water reactors and capital cost and also in the cost of the electricity. You can say to me, you never built anything, how do you know how much it costs. Well we built the NIF. We know how much that cost. And we know what these are going to cost because there's a lot of models for semiconductors. We think we understand targets. The building stuff we think we get. This is probably reasonably accurate. The thing that is interesting about it, it is not a carbon producer at all. It avoids all carbon. And that's really an important issue. If you look at what would happen if the United States deployed 700 of them like we talked about in filling that wedge which is not a hard to do. You are talking about in starting 2030 doing like one a year going up to 2040 one a month, you could sort of displace 140 gigatons of carbon dioxide compared to coal. By the way, those are Coal wedges if any of you are in this world. That is a lot of wedges. There are 30 wedges on earth. If this were more displaced, if this was a part of our world wide community, and again, putting this in fits mottles for how plants are coming offline and how we could put them online. You could have a big story here. And remember, the cost of carbon is expected to be $100 a ton mitigating or buying off carbon so just to go over it: A 140 billion tons is $14 trillion. So you could start paying for this on its own. It could pay its way, the future. That would change also a lot of stuff about how to do this. If you think that's what the cost of carbon will be which I think a lot of people do. In fact, if you look at how much of the cost to develop it. If you assume $20 billion in R & B and development funding through 2030 so the build the first two plants; right? And develop them and build them, and you discounted the value of that carbon dioxide you are talking about a dollar per ton. So this is an insurance policy that you would like to have. You spend $1 to avoid $100 forever. It is a really interesting idea. So the RDD cost over time are essentially 0. Let me just finish my talk. Laser inertial fusion energy, it's sustainable. It's carbon free. It's not geopolitical. It's safe. It's molecular. It's compact. You could do a relatively rapid development path. It uses our infrastructure. What's really cool about it, it will always accept evolutionary improvements and seme conductor technology performance of targets. And we don't have to invent our own industry to do it. We use other industries that already exist. This is sort of too good to be true. All these things coming together. We are about to if I happened out good it is to be true. We think we have a story. We think it is well analyzed. We have a lot to do to make this all happen. But you know, look what the choice is. We are at a knothole in the energy environmental challenge. I think this sweep of history from 100 years ago to 100 years from now is kind of an interesting thought. I have to thank the Long Now Foundation for getting me to rethink how I think. And what I thought about this. What was 100 years ago. We had Einstein show up. This was really the beginning of modern science as we know it. Everything we know about our postindustrial revolution age was changing. Literarily my grandparents were using horse and buggy; right? It's a fact when they were born. This is when this period was changing. In 19501960, the quantum revolution was on. Integrated circuits were happening. The laser was developed and here we are in 2010 on the verge of proving that we can get ignition gain using hydrogen as the fuel with lasers. And what do we have to do? Do we have a future that's bright and clean a 100 years from now? Or not? How do we get through here? This is sort of this knothole that we efficient. It looks like it is 2030 but it's really right this second. This is our challenge and this is our responsibility. So what's your role? I didn't just come here just to talk. I'm here recruiting, signing up. We have a clear societal need. When I talk about societal need I'm talking about our responsibility as stewards of our own planet. There's several solutions. I don't want to come across that there's only one. But they have to be worked on. We have to look at the options. And scientists and technologists can give you a lot of choices. I hope this is one you can go home and talk about. But it won't get done because we did this. There are issues of policy, funding, industrial commitment, communication, personal commitment to our own future and our children's future. And our grandchildren's future. But the problem is we live in a world that let me tell you. There's brick wall here. And everyone knows it. Which is shortterm vision. Unwillingness to invest in what are obvious problems. Vested interest that have different points of view. Preconceptions about what can and can't work. Sometimes cold skepticism, and apathy, I think the amazing part of the gulf of Mexico is so far, nothing has happened. It's sort of scratching the back of your head. But it hasn't we haven't woken up to it. I remember, that's going at a very small rate compared to the amount of oil we are burning in the United States. I think that life, if we have a lot of friends in life, if they were talking to their politicians, talking to each other, if they wanted to learn more about it, come to our Web site lasers.llnl.gov, they made a story, could make this happen. We can't do it on our own. We need your help. And we if we do that, I think we can jump that wall or if we are quantumally mechanically thinking, tunnel through that wall. And not even touch it. So when I look at this is there fusion in our future? I love this picture because that's 4 billionbarrels of oil coming out of the gulf; right? When I show this to kids, I say where do you see your energy future of course, they see the tanker. I say look real carefully. It takes them a long time to see the sun. And then I say what's burning in the sun? Water!So fusion is in our future. Can we make it happen? Let's invent the future together. Thank you for your time.