“If the density and temperature are high enough, it ignites the nuclear fusion reaction and produces much more energy, 100 times more than the laser took to do all of this,” Andrew Schmitt, a physicist at NRL, said.
The NRL team wants to develop the science and technologies to a much higher energy scale between 500,000 to million joules to drive a higher performance fusion implosion.
To produce a higher energy laser it will require a facility specifically designed for argon fluoride.
NRL researchers already leverage the laser fusion technologies they developed for krypton fluoride on their argon fluoride experiments. They hope a new laser facility specifically designed for argon fluoride will further prove the viability of this gas as a cost-effective alternative to current laser fusion approaches.