Nuclear Fusion: Learning From Failure Term Paper by Nicky

A look at the failures in past research on nuclear fusion and their implications for research today.
# 151542 | 1,073 words | 6 sources | APA | 2012 | US
Published on Jun 25, 2012 in Physics (Matter and Energy) , Physics (Nuclear)

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The paper describes the many experiments and fifty years of research regarding cold fusion and discusses the lessons learned by fusion research. The paper notes all the failures of past research but points out that past failures have brought the world the possibility of nuclear fusion as an energy source during the first half of the 21st century.

From the Paper:

"It has been a long road with many failures, but many successes as well as we discover the practical applications and necessary test conditions to produce pure fusion. In over fifty years of experiments, not one attempt at igniting nuclear fusion has been successful. Probably the most infamous, but not so certain, failure was the 1989 announcement by Martin Fleischmann and Stanley Pons, chemists at the University of Utah, that they had discovered "cold fusion" -- a simple, inexpensive way to produce nuclear fusion. With "tabletop" equipment, they proudly proclaimed, the mystery had been solved. After millions of research dollars and countless nuclear scientists becoming involved in recreating their spectacular, world-changing discovery, it was determined, in a controversial decision, that cold fusion was impossible (Kahney, 1999). However, the U.S. Navy continued to research the project under the budget anonymity of "miscellaneous." In 2004, the U.S. Department of Energy announced that there might be something to cold fusion, and suggested that funding agencies should consider requests for research dollars (Brooks, 2009, p. 64). Research continues to this day, and limited indications of possible success have been achieved on a small scale. Fleischmann and Pons may have been correct, after all."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Brooks, M. (2009). 13 things that don't make sense: The most baffling scientific mysteries of our time. New York: Random House.
  • Buhl, G. (2005, November 8). Nuclear fusion. Retrieved November 12, 2009, from
  • Doyle, J. (2009, April 1). Scientists take another stab at nuclear fusion. Retrieved November 11, 2009, from San Francisco Chronicle:
  • Kahney, L. (1999, December 12). A century of spectacular failure. Retrieved November 12, 2009, from
  • McCracken, G., & Stott, P. (2005). Fusion: The energy of the universe. New York: Academic Press.

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

Nuclear Fusion: Learning From Failure (2012, June 25) Retrieved September 17, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Nuclear Fusion: Learning From Failure" 25 June 2012. Web. 17 September. 2019. <>