IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis

China turns on ‘artificial sun’

8th December, 2020 Science and Technology

Context: China successfully powered up its “artificial sun” nuclear fusion reactor for the first time, marking a great advance in the country’s nuclear power research capabilities.

HL-2M Tokamak reactor

  • The HL-2M Tokamak reactor is China’s largest and most advanced nuclear fusion experimental research device, and scientists hope that the device can potentially unlock a powerful clean energy source.
  • It uses a powerful magnetic field to fuse hot plasma and can reach temperatures of over 150 million degrees Celsius, approximately ten times hotter than the core of the sun.
  • Located in Sichuan province, the reactor is often called an “artificial sun” on account of the enormous heat and power it produces.
  • Chinese scientists have been working on developing smaller versions of the nuclear fusion reactor since 2006.